The Walking Dead‘s latest episode “Worth” is what bridges are made of. That is to say, providing the set up for next week’s finale which will undoubtedly be a showdown between Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) and Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln). This is a face-off that has been two seasons in the making.

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And it couldn’t come soon enough. While Negan’s arch-nemesis status and bat wielding reign of terror, initially injected a fresh new angle to proceedings, the show has drawn out this storyline as much as humanly possible two seasons on. There are only so many near-death experiences one can survive, even with the considerable skills and resources Negan possesses.

The likes of Glenn and Abraham have fallen victim to Negan, meeting their maker, and in “Worth,” the reckoning comes for Simon (Steven Ogg), a one-time top lieutenant to Negan who is choked to death by his former boss after double-crossing him by getting rid of the Scavengers. It was a less than satisfying exit for one of the show’s best bad guys.

Negan is out for blood and that’s the bottom line. No more messing around. If you are at the Hilltop, Negan will be coming for you. It’s put up or shut up time…and there will be blood. And not even Carl’s pleadings from beyond the grave for peace can forestall the inevitable.

It is debatable whether the whole Negan plotline has been a net plus for The Walking Dead or not. Set ups have felt repetitive at times, and something of a long lead-up to the Negan-Rick clash. And with ratings down, The Walking Dead seems in need of a serious reset.


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