Walking Dead fans rejoice; the long wait to find out who Negan put on the chopping block will finally be answered! In just a few short weeks, the premiere episode of Season 7 will answer one of the most talked about cliffhangers in television history. Audiences have been wracking their brains trying to figure out whose brains got wacked at the end of last season, and if cast members’ reports are anything to go by, it’s going to be a doozy of a kill.
To help prepare for a beloved character’s death, we thought it would be therapeutic to reminisce about the deaths of some not-so-beloved characters. Below you will find twenty characters that made viewers breathe a sigh of relief when they finally met their demise. They can either be characters who are so rotten we find it satisfying to see them killed, or characters that are so irritating, we just can’t help ourselves but get giddy at the sight of them being torn apart by walkers. Whatever the case, the names on this list surely won’t be missed.
Here are the 20 Most Satisfying Deaths In The Walking Dead.
Lori is one probably one of the more controversial characters that has graced The Walking Dead. For one, she’s Rick’s wife, who secretly shacked up with his best friend Shane. She was doing it under the presumption that Rick was dead of course, but still, all that sneaking around was a bit sketchy. Then, when Rick miraculously comes walking back into her life, she tries to sever the tie to Shane and pretend like the affair never happened.
Lori seems to flip-flop between her loyalties to Rick and Shane. At one moment, she’ll say that she stands by her hubby no matter what, and then the next moment she’ll be pouring her heart out to his best friend. Her life gets even more complicated when its revealed that she’s pregnant, and admits she doesn’t know who the father is.
Lori is a character that walks that thin line between sympathetic and irritating. In the end, she dies during childbirth, and while Lori wasn’t the most hated character on the series (see the entries below) she was far from beloved. At least we got those awesome Rick and Carl memes as a result of her death. “Do you feel like an ice cream Carl? Cause you don’t look like an ice cream!”
19. The Saviors Blown Up by Daryl
As history has shown in The Walking Dead, there are certain characters you don’t mess with. One of those characters is Daryl, who may appear to be a softy at times, but you shouldn’t let that fool you. He’s still a rough n’ tough bad boy who will do anything to protect his loved ones, and that includes wiping out an entire biker gang with a rocket launcher.
Our first real scene with Negan’s Saviors from the series is a rather short one. When Abraham, Sasha and Daryl are cornered on the road back to Alexandria, they’re confronted by a group of Saviors on bikes. One of them takes Daryl to the back of the truck to beat him for information, which turns out to be a big mistake. Just as the leader of the group goes to shoot Abraham and Sasha point blank, his entire squad is engulfed in flames and burst into a million Savior pieces. Daryl then reveals himself from behind the truck, showing that he managed to subdue his captor and light up the Saviors with a well-aimed rocket launcher. Rick’s group: 10, Saviors: 0.
18. Dave and Tony
Fans of the show might be surprised to remember that it was a while before there was human on human killing going on. The first taste that we got was Shane killing poor ol’ Otis in the beginning of Season 2, but our hero Rick finally gets his hands dirty later on in that season in the episode “Nebraska.”
When Hershel decides to drown his sorrows in the local bar, Glenn and Rick follow to convince him to come back to the farm. While they’re at the bar trying to lift Hershel’s spirits, two men enter by the names of Dave and Tony, and right off the bat you can tell these guys are up to no good. They start pressing Rick and the others for information, and when push comes to shove, they make the stupid decision to draw their weapons on Rick.
As per usual, crossing Rick proves to be a mistake. Our series’ hero quickly pulls out his sidearm and shoots Dave in the head, and then fires a round in Tony from behind before finishing him off with a second. Dave and Tony might be minor characters, but they have the honor of serving as Rick’s first human kills pre-apocalypse. And oh, what kills they were.
17. Ron and Sam
For this list, we’re really breaking it into two different categories: the first being villains that were hated because of how evil they were, with the other section comprised of characters that are so annoying they we couldn’t wait to see them get eaten. Ron and Sam fall into the latter category as two of the most irritating characters on the program.
After Pete dies in the Season 5 finale, his eldest son Ron just can’t seem to let it go that it was by Rick’s hand, despite the fact that his dear old dad was a complete jerk who beat him and his mother. When Alexandria is eventually overrun by walkers, Ron and his anxiety riddled brother Sam accompany Rick and the rest of the group while covered in zombie guts to try to escape. As foreshadowed in a previous episode by cowering in his room when things hit the fan, Sam begins to panic, and gets himself eaten by the horde of walkers. His understandably horrified mother quickly follows suit, and Ron finally snaps.
Blaming Rick for his family’s demise, Roy sets his sights to kill. As Ron raises his gun to Rick, he’s quickly cut down by Michonne with a katana in the back, but not before he can squeeze a round off, shooting Carl through is eye. All in all, it’s a small price to pay for having such irritating characters meet their end.
16. Paula from the Saviors
The Walking Dead is filled with all sorts of characters that are smug beyond all reason, and one of the smuggest of them all was Paula. After Rick and his group’s assault on the unsuspecting Saviors (which we admit, was a little messed up), Carol and Maggie are ambushed and taken hostage by Paula and her cohorts.
During their time in the Savior safe house, Paula tells Carol about her tragic backstory, which involves losing her husband and children to the zombie epidemic. Certain parallels are drawn between Carol and Paula, who have both lost their families and started their journey as rather passive, mild-mannered women. Paula, however, seems to boast that she knows everything about everything, with a certain arrogance that broadcasts to the viewer it’s only a matter of time before she’s given the axe.
When walkers inevitably overrun the safe house, Carol begs Paula to “just run,” as she’s tired of killing people. Paula stubbornly refuses, and taunts Carol to shoot her, which she then does. Out of options, Paula starts laughing like she still has something hidden up her sleeve. She doesn’t of course, and is then impaled and gnawed on by the surrounding walkers, resulting in one of the most satisfying deaths the show has seen yet.
15. Mary (and Everyone Else Carol Killed) from Terminus
In the short time she was on the series, Mary quickly proved to be a character viewers loathed, so it was fitting that Carol, a character viewers loved, would be the one to kill her. Carol has proven time and again why she’s a fan-favorite of the zombie apocalypse program. She arguably has the best character arc in the entire series, starting off as a passive wife abused by her husband and transforming into a fighter that will kill without blinking an eye. After Rick and co. are captured by Mary and the rest of the cannibals at Terminus, Carol springs into action in the premiere of Season 5, laying waste to almost everyone inside in epic fashion.
Going full-on beast mode and armed with a high powered rifle, Carol blows a huge wall in Terminus’ line of defense, allowing her to sneak in and start picking off her victims one by one. She eventually finds herself in Terminus’ creepy room of death, in which she spots Mary, the queen bee of Terminus, and shoots her in the leg. Wallowing in pain, Mary is left alone to die by a horrible walker death, a fitting fate for a person who served up human meat with a smile.
14. Officer Gorman
During Beth’s brief stint at the Grady Memorial Hospital, she met a lot of skeevy people, but none of them quite reached the creeper levels of Officer Gorman. A true jerk, Gorman would make frequent attempts to hit on Beth in between his bouts of arrogance.
Like any good jerk, Officer Gorman finally received his comeuppance when he, once again, tried to use his position of authority to seduce Beth. This time, however, Beth was having none of it, and in an act of self-defense, she smashes a glass jar of lollipops across the side of Gorman’s face. Better yet, a recently deceased orderly/new walker springs to life and proceeds to chomp down on Gorman’s neck. After all the pervy hijinks he pulled, Gorman was a character that certainly won’t be missed, and his death was one that fans could gleefully cheer for in a completely guilt-free way. It was also a shining moment for Beth, who was just starting to become a well-rounded character by this point. Her impressive arc was cut short, of course, but we’ll get to that later.
You can’t expect everyone to get along with each other for too long in The Walking Dead. So when Rick and company moved into the safe recesses of Alexandria, it makes sense that we’d be introduced to a few rotten apples in the bunch. One of the most rotten by far was a surgeon by the name of Pete, who had anger issues that would rival those of Ike Turner.
Pete saw it fit to frequently beat his wife Jessie and his two children, Ron and Sam. Even though the kids weren’t the most beloved characters (see entry #17), no one deserves to get beaten by a parent, especially to the point where they can’t lift their arms. Rick saw that, and eventually confronted Pete, much to the chagrin of the other citizens in Alexandria.
After a fistfight in the middle of the street, things came to a head when Pete showed up wasted to a town meeting and inadvertently killed Reg Monroe, the husband of Alexandria’s leader, Deanna. With tears in her eyes, Deanna asks Rick to do what he should have done long ago, and our hero proceeds to shoot Pete point blank. Ironic enough, the town meeting was being held to discuss whether or not to exile Rick. Pete made that decision quite easy for them.
As one of the Governor’s most trusted confidants, Martinez was never meant to be a well-liked character. He certainly wasn’t as despicable as his boss, of course, but he wasn’t the warmest of people either. He just sat back when the Governor mercilessly shot all of his own citizens, but had enough sense to ditch the man when things got too hairy. As a result, Martinez formed his very own little community, one that wasn’t as stable as Woodbury, but had a respectable number of followers nonetheless.
That community seemed to appeal to the Governor, so when Martinez allowed his former boss to rejoin the ranks as a subordinate, you knew it was just a matter of time before things went south. Things went south rather quickly though, when the Governor decided to take a golf club to the back of Martinez’s head. The half unconscious Martinez is then dragged over to a pit of walkers, and is lowered in head first by his former cohort. It was a death that wasn’t exactly gut-wrenching, but we’d be lying if we said that we didn’t feel a teensy bit sorry for the guy. That’s a pretty awful way to go.
11. Rick’s Shanking Victim (Ethan)
In a post-apocalyptic world ruled by zombies, it’s only natural that violence becomes a way of life. Such is the case when Rick and the gang are invited into the Hilltop Colony in Season 6. A community complete with livestock and an intriguingly medieval vibe, Maggie is tasked with negotiating trade terms with their stubborn leader, Gregory, who Maggie doesn’t find all that charming. Apparently, Savior leader Negan felt the same way, and he tasked several of Hilltop community members with the assassination of their own leader.
Fortunately for Gregory, Rick was there to help out. After the Hilltop leader is stabbed by a man named Ethan, Rick leaps into action (literally) and pounces on the attacker. Things don’t go Rick’s way, and Ethan gains the upper hand, holding a knife to Rick’s neck and telling everyone to back off. Rick doesn’t give Ethan any more time to bark orders however, pulling out a blade of his own and shanking Ethan in the jugular.
As blood pours out of his neck like a busted juice box, Rick tosses his would-be killer aside and stands up a bloodied mess. Noticing that all of the Hilltop community members are staring at him, all the blood soaked Rick can muster up is a very confused, “what?” And thus, a classic Walking Dead moment was born.
Ed is the type of character who is such a jerk, we can’t help but smile thinking about the many times he got what was coming to him. Even though he went overboard, we couldn’t help but crack a smile when Shane mercilessly beat Ed into a pulp. But that was nothing compared to when the oaf met his demise by the hands of a horde of walkers. After refusing to join Carol in group activities, the camp is ambushed by a herd of undead, and one of the first ones to go is Ed. Thinking that Carol has come back into their tent, Ed curses at her and rolls over, only find a walker staring him in the face.
Although he technically dies by the hands of the undead, we just have to mention the coup de grace that Carol delivers to zombie Ed in the following episode. In a fit of rage, she smashes her former husband’s head into oblivion, taking out all the anger that she’s stored up throughout the years. It’s the first milestone that sends Carol down the road towards her brutal transformation, and we couldn’t be happier that it comes from bashing Ed’s rotten brains in.
9. Tomas from the Prison
There are some characters in The Walking Dead that you just get a bad vibe from, and Tomas from Season 3 was definitely one of them. After clearing the front end of their newly found prison, Rick’s group decides to start exterminating the walkers from inside. Loaded up on riot gear, they find more than they bargained for when they come across a gang of prison inmates that had locked themselves in the cafeteria since the beginning of the attacks.
While they initially seemed to want to make peace, viewers just couldn’t shake the weird feeling they got from the alpha male of the group, Tomas (probably because he perpetually looked like he had a rock stuck in his shoe). While attempting to clear a group of walkers together, Tomas finally shows his true colors by making multiple clear-as-day attempts at taking Rick out of the equation. After dispatching of the undead, Tomas chalks his actions up to a heat of the moment miscue, but Rick isn’t buying it, and proceeds to plunge his machete halfway through Tomas’ skull. We didn’t get a lot of time to know Tomas, but from what we did know, we could probably tell he was a character that won’t be missed by many.
8. Owen from the Wolves
Like a few other characters in the show, Owen is a little tough to pin down. As the apparent leader of the Wolves, he is arrogant, greedy, and reckless, but at times he does seem like he’s about to turn over a new leaf. Sure, he leads a vicious attack against Alexandria in which he and his group kills countless innocent people in cold blood. Afterwards, he’s finally subdued by Morgan, who refuses to kill him, as he firmly believes that even he can change.
Owen thinks otherwise however, and tells him that if he breaks out, he’s just going to start killing people again. Enter Carol, who fights Morgan in order to kill Owen then and there. During their bickering over the matter, Owen escapes, taking Denise as a hostage. While trying to get over Alexandria’s wall, Owen actually risks his life to save Denise, and just when the baddie looks like he might redeem himself, he gets shot by Carol and overrun by walkers. It’s a death that many would have seen coming, and while Owen has a small act of redemption towards the end, there are still cheers to be had when Carol finally delivers on her promise of killing him.
7. Gareth from Terminus
The only thing worse than a walker that eats people is a person that eats people. Gareth and the rest of his cohorts at Terminus made the conscious decision to eat other humans after a group of murderous thugs took over their camp. Gareth and company took their stronghold back, but in the process, became monsters themselves by starting a human slaughterhouse. Thankfully, Rick and the gang managed to avoid being added onto the menu with compliments of Carol, but Gareth wasn’t so quick to give up the hunt, especially after he found out that his mother (Mary) had been killed during the raid.
Unfortunately for Gareth, he’s not all that good at hunting. After successfully nabbing Bob, Gareth and his fellow Terminus survivors precede to barbecue his leg and eat it right in front of the poor guy. Their moment of horrific vengeance is quickly ruined, however, when they find out that Bob has been bitten, making the meat they’d consumed tainted. To make matters worse, Gareth makes the not-so-brilliant decision to sneak into Rick’s camp to exact some more exact revenge. Of course, it isn’t long before Gareth’s group is caught off guard by an ambush and he’s kneeling down and begging Rick for mercy. Rick thankfully decides to put Gareth and his pals down once and for all, and the crowd roared.
There’s a rule in The Walking Dead that says if something seems too good to be true, it’s because it is. When the group’s peaceful life is broken up at the prison by the Governor, Carol and Tyrese are charged with protecting the recently orphaned Mika and Lizzie, as well as Rick’s newborn daughter, Judith. They find familial bliss in the form of a house in the middle of the woods, and for a time, Carol and Tyreese actually consider staying there instead of pushing onward.
Sadly, things take a turn for the worse when the pair find Lizzie after she’s killed her little sister in cold blood. The mentally unstable Lizzie — who’s incapable of differentiating between humans and mindless, walking hunks of dead flesh — explains that she simply wanted to prove to her adoptive mother that walkers are still people. Torn, Carol realizes that the only thing she can do is put Lizzie out of her misery. It’s certainly an emotionally devastating kill for sure; Carol doesn’t seem to be in the happiest of moods after all is said and done. But we’d be fooling ourselves if we didn’t agree that knocking Lizzie off had to be done. She was going to kill baby Judith, for crying out loud!
5. Joe and the “Claimed” Gang
They may not be as well-known as some of the other antagonists, but Joe and his “Claimed” gang are most certainly some of the worst. As soon as Daryl bumps into the ruffians after being separated from Beth, the bad vibes just start flowing. For one, they beat one of their own members to death for stealing half of Daryl’s squirrel and lying about it. We’re not saying that lying is good, but being beaten to death for it is going a tad too far in our book.
Joe and his gang took it even further when they corner Rick, who’d previously killed one of the “Claimed” gang in an earlier episode. In a heinous act of maliciousness, one of Joe’s henchmen grabs Carl and announces to the rest of the group that he’s going to rape him. This understandably pushes Rick over the edge, who bites into Joe’s jugular in a glorious animalistic rage. Joe bleeds out with a confused look on his face that seems to say, “what the hell just happened?” The rest of Joe’s gang are then quickly dispatched, getting exactly what they deserved. Or so we “claim”.
4. Officer Dawn
There seem to be two primary types of villains in The Walking Dead: those who feel like what they’re doing is for the greater good, and those who are just motivated by pure power lust. Season 7’s upcoming big bad, Negan, seems to fall in the latter category, while Officer Dawn definitely fell into the former column.
Dawn was abusive, scheming, manipulating, and often times, just a complete jerk. Though she was far from what we would call a good leader (at least compared to others on the show), there are instances where Dawn becomes sympathetic, especially when her fellow officers start to turn on her. Dawn, of course, throws out all that sympathy the audience felt for her when Beth stabs her while trying to save Noah and is greeted with a bullet in the head, courtesy of the Atlanta hospital head honcho.
Dawn is then greeted to her own bullet to the head, compliments of an enraged Daryl. After half of a season of Dawn barking orders and bullying her subordinates into submission, it felt quite good for her reign to come to its violent end, even though Beth (who was just starting to become a worthwhile character) was killed in the process.
Nothing’s worse than a spineless coward, and Nicholas was the most spineless of them all. Not only does he finally admit that he left behind his own men, but he is also directly to blame for what happened to Noah, who received one of the most brutal deaths in the show’s history. Glenn, who witnessed Nicholas’ betrayal, rightfully confronts him back at Alexandria, telling Nicholas to never go on runs again and to stay out of his way. A more than simple punishment, considering Glenn could have just as easily killed Nicholas, or, at the very least, told someone else about his betrayal.
And how does Nicholas repay Glenn for his kindness? By trying to kill him! After leading Glenn to the middle of nowhere, Nicholas attempts to shoot him, but, being the failure that he is, he botches it. Glenn once again finds it in himself to spare Nicholas, but this time the coward attempts to turn over a new leaf and actively tries to redeem himself.
It’s all for naught sadly, as Glenn and Nicholas eventually find themselves standing on top of a dumpster with an entire horde of walkers clamoring below. In a final act of desperation, Nicholas says “sorry” to Glenn (which was much overdue), puts his gun to his temple, and pulls the trigger. Although fans were heartbroken to think thought Glenn had also died from Nicholas’ actions, nobody was mourning the guy who actually pulled the trigger.
2. The Governor
A deviant that had been a thorn in Rick’s side for two seasons, the Governor was cruising for a bruising ever since the audience was introduced to Woodbury. A master manipulator with a deadly ego, the Governor served as a primary antagonist who was both cunning and unstable, and while he might be topped by the upcoming Negan, he arguably still stands as The Walking Dead’s best antagonist to date.
After getting his butt handed to him on a silver platter at the end of Season 3, the Governor runs away from Rick’s prison with his tail between his legs, and decides to punish his loyal followers with a bullet in the back. He’s then subsequently ditched by his remaining compadres and left to fend for himself. Out of sheer determination (and some more back stabbing), the Governor once again assembles a small army to storm Rick’s castle.
But things once again go sour for the tyrant. After making the mistake of beheading Hershel, a massive battle erupts between the two groups of survivors. While fighting Rick, the Governor seems to have the upper hand until he’s cut down by Michonne’s trusty katana. Defeated, bleeding out, and lying on the ground, the Governor is put out of his misery by his current girlfriend, who delivers a swift bullet to his head. His death was a long time coming, and it was every bit as satisfying as it should have been.
If the Governor’s death was simply delightful, then Shane’s death was nothing but pure bliss. Starting off as Rick’s most trusted ally, who turns into Rick’s deadliest foe, Shane is inevitably consumed by his jealousy and rage. Upon Rick’s return at the beginning of the series, who was formerly thought to be dead, Shane’s world comes crashing down before him. His affair with Lori is over, and Carl, who he looked at as his adopted son, now has his father back in his life.
Because of this, Shane only grows to resent Rick more and more as time went on. The two constantly butt heads on how to lead the group, with Shane usually suggesting a more aggressive style of violence to solve their problems. It’s amazing what the human ego allows us to believe, and Shane’s ego was so out of whack, it was telling him that he needed to kill Rick for the safety of Lori and Carl.
After being led by his best friend out to the boonies to die, Rick starts to put the pieces together. Before Shane has time to know what hit him, Rick plunges a knife into Shane’s heart, snuffing out his life. It’s a difficult moment for Rick, but a glorious one for fans. Shane had long worn out his welcome, and many a viewer were probably smiling when they saw the shocked look on Shane’s smug face when he realized he’d met his end.
Which Walking Dead death most satisfied your bloodlust? Let us know in the comments.