Premiere a series by smashing two of your main characters’ heads with a barbed baseball bat and you might find not all fans are happy. In fact, producers of The Walking Dead have admitted they toned down some of the violence in season seven due to a backlash from viewers.
Speaking at a conference for NATPE (the National Association of Television Program Executives), exec producer Gale Anne Hurd said that episodes that were still in production at the time of the gory season seven premiere were subsequently edited to be less violent.
“We were able to look at the feedback on the level of violence. We did tone it down for episodes we were still filming for later on in the season,” Hurd explained.
She went on to address the criticism that the scenes where crazed villain Negan batted long-time fan favourites Glenn and Abraham to death were verging on unjustified violence. “This is not a show that is torture porn,” she said, saying the showmakers are careful that “we don’t cross that line.”
So, when The Walking Dead returns from its mid-season break we should expect a lot less airtime for barbed-wire violence, right? Well, maybe not. The show’s short promo during the weekend’s Super Bowl saw Negan’s bat take another victim. Look away now if you don’t want to see another merciless Walking Dead casualty…
The Walking Dead returns in the US on Sunday 12th February and will air the following evening in the UK, 9 pm on FOX