Despite the fact that so many characters were killed in The Walking Dead, The disappearance of Glenn Rhee will always be a sensitive topic. The character was well loved by the fanbase who appreciated the way he retained his compassion and integrity at a time when the world was in the zombie apocalypse.
There have been fans who have wondered if killing Glenn was the right choice, as viewers weren’t tired of his character and would have preferred that he be saved. While that’s a valid argument, there are also several reasons why Glenn’s disappearance was the right way to go, and it’s worth delving into the benefits and drawbacks of his fate.
10 Lived: The group would have had its moral compass
There is always a need for at least one character who can enlighten the group and ensure that they remain the good guys. Unfortunately, no one has been able to fill that spot since Glenn’s disappearance, after which the leads didn’t seem much better than the villains.
Glenn was easily the moral compass who never wavered, as best demonstrated when he was the only one to defend the prisoners at Terminus, as he argued that being good is what his group was supposed to be – Rick then agreed and did the same. Glenn asked. If Glenn had remained alive, the most dubious decisions made by the group would not have happened.
9 Stay Gone: Negan needed an impactful debut
Negan has had a huge impact on the series as a whole. However, this would not have been possible if he hadn’t had a shocking debut, so there had to be a huge sacrifice to ensure that viewers saw him as a legitimate threat.
By eliminating the character everyone loved and agreed to be the nicest guy in the bunch, Negan’s villainy was instantly established. He wouldn’t have had half the impact if he had killed someone like Eugene or Aaron, who fans didn’t have the same connection to.
8 Lived: could have filled the void after Maggie’s departure
For the most part, Glenn has been one of the best romantic partners in The Walking Deadbut after connecting with Maggie, that was the main thrust of her character arc. Since Maggie left the series for about two seasons, the gap from such an important character has been felt and could have been filled by Glenn.
The series tried to use characters like Tara, Enid, and Jesus to replace Maggie’s role and failed, but Glenn would have had no problem as she was a nice character who hadn’t gone through a solo arc, meaning her role would have he felt cool and mitigated Maggie’s absence.
7 Stay Gone: Her disappearance allowed Maggie to become a leader
It was after Maggie agreed to be a widow and had to watch her husband get killed in front of her eyes that she transitioned into a leadership role. It was the stepping stone her character needed, as the will to beat Negan and shape her son’s future was what drove her to keep going.
Before that, Maggie relied almost entirely on Glenn for her characterization, which faded once she became independent and made her own decisions to become a genuine leader. Glenn’s death allowed this to happen, which means that his death was not in vain.
6 Lived: Glenn’s death lessened the impact of Abraham’s disappearance
The season six finale remains one of the biggest television hurdles in history, and the next season’s premiere reveals that Negan chose to kill Abraham. After months of waiting, fans finally got the answer to that massive question and endured Abraham’s death.
However, with Glenn doing the same moments later, the impact of Abraham’s disappearance was tainted, as Glenn had been on the show longer and had more emotional connections. Abraham’s death was cheapened because it became unnecessary, while it also made the suspense lose value as there was one more death than promised.
5 Stay Gone – Most of your close connections have also left the show
When a character does not have strong relationships in The Walking Dead, they are more than likely to be bitten. Otherwise they just lose relevance, as seen with characters like Tara and Sasha, whose roles failed before they were killed.
Glenn would have found himself in a similar position by now had he lived, since all characters other than Daryl didn’t have much to do with him. With Daryl also having his own stories, Glenn just wouldn’t have had enough characters to connect with, and he’s likely been relegated to a supporting character.
4 Live: The show lost fan interest after Glenn’s departure
The season 7 premiere saw up to 17 million viewers, representing a peak audience for the series. Yet many felt The Walking Dead It had gone too far in terms of violence and deaths of beloved characters, and Glenn’s disappearance certainly showed its impact, as the series suffered a gradual decline in viewership ratings in season seven.
By contrast, season 10’s midseason finale was the lowest-rated episode in the show’s history, highlighting the steep decline. Somehow, Glenn’s departure represented many fans losing interest as well, and had he lived, there’s a strong chance that viewership ratings would have held up better.
3 Stay Gone: participating in the Saviors and Whisperers War does not fit his character
After Glenn’s disappearance, the show went on to focus on the number of communities in the zombie apocalypse, and each season since season seven brought in groups of villains. Glenn simply wasn’t the type of character who would have gotten involved in such battles.
He was out of his element against the governor and even then asked for peace. He also didn’t kill anyone alive until the end of season six, and broke down in tears when he had to. Glenn’s character was inherently pacifist, so getting him to participate in community wars would have been an unusual move on his part.
two Lived: it was one of the few links that remained with the origin of the program
The only characters left from the first season are Daryl and Carol, and even they were in a recurring capacity at the time, and Glenn was initially a regular. Anyone who watches the first season and jumps to the tenth will find it unrecognizable, as almost everyone has died.
Glenn, if he remained alive, would have created a connection between the beginning of the series and the end, as his character development showed how a meek and immature person became a badass survivor.
1 Stay Gone: the moment of his death was the same as in the comics
The sad fact is that Glenn never became a father in the zombie world, as he died before his son was born. Still, that’s the way it was in the source material as well, with Glenn facing his disappearance at the hands of Negan in exactly the same circumstances.
Letting him live would have been too big of a change in terms of storytelling, as there was nothing to derive from the comics for his stories, meaning the plots of other characters would have to be handed to him. To this end, it is better for him to have found his destiny, as he completely closed his character arc.
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