The Walking Dead drops its first F-bomb in years
The Walking Dead seems to have some censorship leeway from AMC in Season 11, as the show uses its first F-word in a long time.
WARNING: The following contains spoilers for The Walking Dead Season 11, Episode 15, “Trust,” which airs Sunday, April 3 on AMC.
All along The Walking Dead, many viewers have expressed their desire for at least a few F-bombs on the show — but with AMC being a cable TV network, they’re pretty strict about profanity. However, this week’s episode of The Walking Dead finally makes a loud and clear aggressive F-bomb.
While most networks allow most of the “seven dirty words” George Carlin listed in his 1972 monologue “Seven Words You Can Never Say on Television,” a line has always been drawn at the F-word. breaking Bad was limited to a limited number of swear words per season, but it was fine without the F-word. So there’s The Walking Dead, which suffered a little from its censorship. The comics detail a much more graphic world where the F-word is commonly used, most notably by the recently returned Negan making it one of his trademarks. It made sense at the start of the show that there would be a lack of lewdness, but as time passed and many survivors became hardened by the harsh environment, it seemed doubtful that each character’s language was angelic.
Back in season 9, episode 4, The Walking Dead seemed to have dropped his first F-bomb, but fans weren’t quite sure. It was spoken by Daryl (played by the recently injured Norman Reedus), who grunts and mumbles so much it was hard to confirm if he actually said it. But thanks to the power of the captions, viewers confirmed he said it, ranting to Rick, “…and you sure f**k wouldn’t have found any of us.” This was the first time the show had aired a character using the expletive, but behind the scenes and DVD-exclusive scenes showed Rick using it in the final scene of season 4 and again in season 6. There exists also an uncensored version of Negan’s introduction which makes his character more appealing to comic book readers.
Now, in season 11, there’s an F-bomb that’s even clearer and more satisfying. In “Trust”, Lance Hornsby and a team of Commowealth soldiers are under the impression that Maggie stole his arms cartel and participated in the Riverbend Massacre. He interrogates his son Hershel Jr. for information and is greeted with hostility by Elijah, Maggie, and Daryl. Of course, the Commonwealth soldiers are already ready to attack, so Daryl responds to Lance with a “Tell ’em lay down their guns or something really f*****g happens.”
Daryl’s F-bomb was enthusiastically received by fans, especially those disappointed by The Walking Deadwatered down dialogue. The show is known for its blood, gore, and raw imagery when it comes to death, but that’s not reflected in its language. According to FanFest, AMC had a policy that was dropped before Season 8 where The Walking Dead was allowed two F-words per season, which was used in Season 3 of Fear the living dead and partially in The Walking Dead: World Beyond. So it seems like the main series was a little scared to step out of their comfort zone.
It could also be that the show is in its final season and has little to lose. Dropping an F-bomb here and there won’t hurt in the long run because there’s no longer a long run. But her use of profanity in ‘Trust’ has so much more impact because of its rarity. Daryl swearing at Lance shows the anger he gets when someone threatens the people he cares about most, and maybe that realization makes The Walking DeadThe lack of casual swearing is worth it.
To see Daryl drop the F-bomb, watch The Walking Dead Season 11, Episode 15 on AMC+. The Season 11B finale of The Walking Dead airs next Sunday at 9 p.m. ET and is available to stream a week early on AMC+.
KEEP READING: The Walking Dead’s Maggie Faces Moral Dilemma Over Negan
The Walking Dead Season 11, Episode 15, “Trust”, recap and spoilers
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