Spoilers for The Walking Dead Season 7 Episode 4 follow.
Negan continued to assert his dominance over Rick Grimes and Alexandria. On Sunday night, he and his Saviors marched into the Safe-Zone to collect their new stuff from Rick’s group, all the while having Rick hold the Lucille bat which was used to kill two core members of their family.
The Walking Dead executive producer David Alpert weighed in on the deliberate manipulation and humiliation of Rick with such a tactic while on Talking Dead after the episode.
“I think Negan is challenging Caesar Millan a little bit,” Alpert said. “It’s a little bit about asserting dominance, right? He wants that look in his eyes of a subserbiant dog. He kept talking about it.”
“He’s also been doing this from the moment we met him,” Alpert said. “He put the axe in the table of the RV and he’s like, ‘Hey, come and get me!’ knowing, you can’t do anything. I’m gonna leave you with my bat right behind me and you’re not gonna hit me and that’s gonna make you acklowledge that you’re a beta.”
Rick was visibly broken by Negan in Sunday’s episode. His humble carrying of Lucille around Alexandria displayed his obedience to Negan’s rule to everyone. Their fearless leader has officially been crippled into accepting oppression.
However, Rick may be up to something. A new and credible theory claims that Daryl was blinking morse code, possibly spawning the first signs of a plan of attack against the Saviors.