The Walking Dead’s greatest character death scene that ended up not being one, the day Nicholas said ‘Thank You’ to Glenn Rhee.
Breathing slows to a crawl, the mind wants to act but the body won’t obey as death is fingertips away. Picture The Walking Dead’s Nicholas on top of a garbage dumpster, frozen in place. One wrong step and agony is promised from every corner. Walker arms outstretched, reaching for their dinner like a juicy steak being teased in front of a lion. Nicholas realizes his present company has no answer for his fate, no exit door, no rabbit to pull out of a hat. Glenn attempts to reason with him amidst the chaos but it might is well be white noise. The nihilistic, rapid decay of Nicholas’ mind is in full swing.
An ‘impulsive’ decision has already been pre-made, Glenn just doesn’t know it yet. Still hopeful, Glenn pleads with Nicholas to “Look at me!” but the days of bravado are over. All that stares back are lifeless eyes that have seen their destiny. The journey has come to its final stop as Nicholas is in acceptance of his imminent departure. No end to stay the whole movie, he’s leaving this theater on his own.
He politely whispers “Thank You” to the last person he’ll ever see, then shoots himself point blank. All the while, Glenn is powerless to save Nicholas from himself despite being inches away. A crimson mask of misery paints Glenn’s face, stunning him. Before Glenn can fully process and react to what has happened, a forsaken Nicholas falls directly into him. The two take a spill off the dumpster into the abyss. In that moment, it appears Glenn is about to meet his maker as a ravenous horde tears every limb and organ.
“Thank You” in RetrospectiveWalking Dead episode, as you watch the dead feast from Glenn’s own viewpoint. Michael Slovis [Breaking Bad] directed the chapter with now-showrunner Angela Kang [Terriers] penning the script. It wasn’t the first time the series has dealt with a character feeling the way Nicholas did, as Andrea experienced similar emotions in season 1 episode 6 [“TS-19”].
It is one of the rare times however, that a character went through with the it despite not having a walker bite. If you recall back in season 4’s premiere, Clara, a destitute woman Rick Grimes meets in the woods, stabs herself to be with her undead husband.
Despite viewers being familiar with the possibility of the dire concept on The Walking Dead… “Thank You” was jaw dropping all the same. The scene was exceptionally powerful, definitely above the call of duty of a regular television episode. From Nicholas’ ominous ‘Thank You,’ to pulling the trigger without warning, to the sudden realization for the viewer that a series original had ‘met their end.’ Although Tyreese’ final episode was brilliant with The Governor’s iconic return, this scene would top it in terms of shock value.
Glenn fans were traumatized from the event to such an extent, they seemingly appeared to will him back on the show through massive social media backlash. Of course, it’s probable Glenn surviving the dumpster horde was always planned. Or at least some kind of audience testing ground. As he was not featured during the ‘In Memoriam’ spot on Talking Dead falling the episode. This all lead to obvious, immediate speculation and theories that Glenn had survived under the dumpster.
The ‘Glenn pulls himself under the dumpster’ theory becomes reality
It was amusing to see photoshops of the theory circulate online, until the show actually went with this exact idea verbatim! Which inevitably damaged the scene’s overall credibility a fair bit. A good portion of fans now remember the scene more for Glenn’s escape rather than the spectacle and picturesque horror.
Nowadays, anytime a major character death is teased on The Walking Dead, you’ll find no end of YouTube one-liners and memes that start off, ‘He slipped under the dumpster!’
No cheating fate for Glenn Rhee
If it was indeed a testing ground for future character deaths, bringing Glenn back did not work out the way fans hoped. As Glenn would again be at the receiving end of a shocking moment in season 7’s premiere. Negan unexpectedly took him out as a second victim post-Abraham, seemingly out of nowhere! The show had been promoting just one person would be chosen by Negan for months after season 6’s cliffhanger.
It stayed true to the comic, as Negan’s Lucille picked Glenn there too. Although season 7’s character death for Glenn Rhee after Abraham was an instant jaw-dropping scene on its own… It’s still second to the perceived dumpster end for him. As TWD creator Robert Kirkman once mentioned, the bigger the character, the more grand and impactful the end scene.
Ironically, in terms of television twists and cinematography… The character end scene that never was, still reigns as what would have been the show’s greatest.
“Thank You” took place in The Walking Dead season 6, episode 3. Purchase “Thank You” digitally on Amazon to relive the whole sequence that led up to Nicholas and Glenn Rhee getting trapped in the first place.
Negan fans, be sure to check out the pros and cons of letting Sanctuary’s former head honcho out of his cell in Alexandria!
If Rick Grimes had known Negan would be free to go in his absence, free to play dad to Judith while Michonne replaced him with Ezekiel… Does he still spare Negan?
Had Rick Grimes peeked into a crystal ball and witnessed the dystopian-like future of Alexandria in his absence, would he undo it all? Every day Rick Grimes is not around his daughter is a day she forgot about him a little bit more than yesterday. Rick’s despised rival becoming her adopted father figure and who she looks to for guidance. Memory alone pales to immediate availability, and Negan is available and willing to play dad. Rick’s promise of a life sentence for Negan reduced to parole for good behavior. Negan has accomplished what Shane set out to do minus Lori.
For those who’ve watched The Walking Dead’s Season 10 Comic Con Trailer, it’s clear Negan will go free from his cell to roam Alexandria… Meaning, it’s only a matter of time before he rebuilds his influence like The Governor before him. Sure, he might take a beating from Daryl but nothing he can’t handle. In the end, Rick placing Negan in the cell will be largely meaningless as Sanctuary’s top guy rewrites his own history. Maybe even Rick’s history if he chooses to. For how much longer will Judith keep believing Michonne’s stories about Negan against her own experiences? Especially, once Michonne starts kissing Ezekiel.
Michonne isn’t even Judith’s real mom after all, and she’s just entering that teenage rebellious phase. Remember how difficult Carl was toward Rick at Judith’s age (and even later)? A moment will come when Judith has to choose between the viewpoints of Michonne and Negan, and vote for him… She’s already ignored Michonne’s wishes before. If Rick Grimes knew Michonne had accepted a replacement in his place rather than continue the search, how would he react? He’s already been in the scenario with Lori once before. So again, go back to the epicenter of it all, The Walking Dead’s Season 8 Finale.
Rick Grimes has an opportunity to vanquish his opponent in Roman Gladiator-like fashion. The Saviors have surrendered, the war is over. Yet, Rick relents and spares Negan from his fate. There’s a saying, ‘first thought, best thought’ or ‘always go with your gut.’ If Rick Grimes ignores Carl’s dream right that second, there might have been true unity by those who fought The Saviors. No forced unity between opposing former front lines who balked at the dream.
The idea two sides imprinted with the memory of the war and its casualties could live in harmony was likely a utopian daydream. Daryl tried desperately to make Rick see that as his best friend. Whereas Maggie had already lost faith in Rick Grimes permanently.
If Rick Grimes could see the future of his decision… Would he change it? Would you?
Relive The Walking Dead Season 8 with the Blu-Ray on Amazon! Rewatch the moment that determined The Walking Dead’s entire future timeline with one action on Season 8 Episode 16 (“Wrath”).
The Walking Dead’s Pollyanna McIntosh officially makes her Lodge 49 debut as Clara mid-episode on this Monday’s Season 2 Premiere on AMC.
Calling all Walking Dead Jadis / Anne fans, Pollyanna McIntosh is back on AMC Television this Monday (8/12)! McIntosh plays the posh British emissary Clara who meets Connie Clark on Lodge 49’s Season 2 Premiere. Clara appears high society and clean-cut, a definite contrast when juxtaposed against her junkyard self on TWD. The same when contrasted with her recent reprisal as The Woman in Darlin’, even her real life English accent is intact on Lodge 49. It’s honestly astonishing how a different accent can recharacterize and change perception of an individual instantly… Before you even get to know them! Makes you think.
While The Natural Aristocrat has to be mum on the finer details of this Monday’s Lodge 49 Season 2 Premiere… You can be guaranteed without any spoilers that Pollyanna McIntosh is seen at the half way point in the episode. In the Lodge 49 First-Look Photos for Season 2, McIntosh’s Clara and Connie Clark appear to be fast friends.
Lodge 49 Season 1 finale recap for Connie Clark
In Lodge 49’s Season 1 finale, Scott Miller revealed to Ernie that Connie has been suffering from brain seizures following their tussle. Connie confirmed to Ernie over the phone that her medical condition was indeed true but said, ‘not to worry.’ That she knows her clock is ticking but so is everybody else’s. Based on this, it’s likely Connie is growing open with revealing her medical state to others. Will she divulge the fine print to Clara or merely hint at it?
By the looks of their AMC photo, it seems a bond between Clara and Connie develops, whether on the Season 2 Premiere or in the future.
Pollyanna McIntosh’s upcoming films
Pollyanna McIntosh was originally confirmed by Deadline for Lodge 49’s second season back on February 27, 2019. Outside of Lodge 49 and this summer’s Darlin’, McIntosh has been announced for an upcoming, unnamed Walking Dead film with Rick Grimes, horror Western film The Moonshine Gang of Cheyenne (with Steven Ogg), thriller Revenge Ride, and German horror film Deathcember.
Be sure to check out our exclusive Pollyanna McIntosh interview on her film Darlin’ featuring her fellow TWD cast mates.
The Natural Aristocrat spoke with Fear the Walking Dead’s soon to debut Austin Amelio (Dwight) at NYC’s IFC Center during Split Screen Festival.
Austin Amelio is about to make his Fear the Walking Dead official debut and relishing the opportunity to create ‘something deeper’ with Dwight. Amelio was in the Big Apple along with fellow Fear cast mates for the Season 5 Premiere at New York’s IFC Center and living in the moment. The Natural Aristocrat initially asked Austin off-camera how happy he was Dwight got to live on in Fear and didn’t get killed off by Daryl after all… Which Austin replied comedically deadpan, “Careful, Scott Gimple could be around here somewhere,” (shifting eyes from side to side) drawing laughs from Gimple and everyone around close by.
Austin would later comment at Split Screens Festival Fear the Walking Dead panel that when he was told he was riding with Gimple he was worried about having ‘the talk.’ The character end talk to be exact. Fear castmate Colman Domingo remarked, ‘Well you still have to ride in the same car with him back!’ which brought big laughs from the rest of the cast. The Walking Dead star and former Daryl Dixon rival discussed the initial pressure of being on the grand stage in the role, relaxing more now, and if he thinks he’s ever getting that vest back…
Watch the interview video above or read the full transcript below!
Interview with Austin Amelio on Dwight
The Natural Aristocrat [Nir Regev]: Austin, how does it feel to transverse and do your own crossover? The first semi-villain to come over to Fear the Walking Dead!
Austin Amelio: I’m really excited about it because I get to keep playing with this character and create something a little deeper with him. So it’s been nice.
We spoke off-camera about how you’re afraid of Scott M. Gimple over there killing your character off!
(Gimple laughs in the background)
Are you guys always watching your back when he’s around?
Of course, it’s part of the show! (laughs) Whenever you’re turning the script pages, and you see a walker, you think “Oh no! This could be the episode where I go!”
How do you feel your character has changed over this season?
It’s changed a lot, that’s about all I can say. I don’t want to talk about it too much or give it away… But he leaves on a pretty emotional note and the troubles rise up on the show I’m on now.
Do you feel you prepare differently after you’ve gotten experience on The Walking Dead than when you first came on the show, acting wise?
Oh, a little more relaxed now. I was pretty stressed out the first couple of years but after playing the guy for a while… I just sort of sunk into what he’s about. So yeah, I’m not as stressed out anymore.
Why do you feel you were stressed out?
It was just such a big thing for me, it was a big show… It’s not like it’s just your grandma and grandpa watching, it’s millions of people. There’s a little pressure with that. But yeah, I’m just sort of relaxing now.
I’m wondering where you’re going to go forward with your career. Are you getting offers to do movies now in-between or after Fear?
No idea, I just take it day-by-day. This business is pretty unpredictable. So it’s just day by day and if something comes around and I jive with it, then great. Sort of where I’m at, no pressure.
My last question is… You ever going to get that vest from Daryl back?
(smiles)I don’t know. I think he took that for good! (laughs) I think it’s gone.
Absolutely, thank you!
Be sure to follow Austin Amelio (@austin_amelio) on Twitter!
Check out The Natural Aristocrat’s interview with Fear the Walking Dead’s Colman Domingo ahead of Fear the Walking Dead’s Season 5 sophomore episode tonight!