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Can you hear that? It's the sizzle of burning flesh on #TheWalkingDead horizon: but just who could be facing a light steam and press? #DarylDixon may well be in the "ironing" line as everything is looking a little grim for our resident Hell's Angel. Episode 3's "The Cell" was harrowing enough, but we can only imagine that things are going to get worse for the littlest Dixon.
Spoilers for The Walking Dead comics to follow!
Episode 4, "Service" promises an extended outing as we finally catch up with Rick's group from Atlanta. If we follow the #comicbooks, #Negan will be taking Carl Grimes back with him to The Sanctuary, which could explain the longer runtime and Rick's shocked face in the promo. Having Carl and Daryl in the same location also stops the show feeling so divided — just like having Carol and Beth at the hospital, or Morgan and Carol at The Kingdom. As we all know, Daryl is far from out of the woods yet, and a rather important scene from Issue #105 could play out sooner rather than later.
Ironing Out The Problems
Next to Lucille, Negan's iron is his best tool of the trade, and it comes into prominence during Issue #105. If we stay true to form, expect the iron to rear its steam setting around Episode 5. For those who don't know, Negan used the iron for anyone who dared go near one his trophy wives. It worked when Dwight slept with (ex) wife Sherry, and afterwards he neatly fell into line as one of Negan's most loyal followers. Issue #105 introduced the characters of Mark and Amber who had a similar tale to Dwight and Sherry, and Mark soon felt the wrath of the iron. With deviations from the source material, could Scott Gimple give Daryl the same fate as Dwight for an upcoming dalliance with Sherry? We already saw Austin Amelio's Dwight rise to prominence during "The Cell," as well as an awkward meeting with Norman Reedus's Daryl and Christine Evangelista's Sherry. It makes more sense than one-time characters Mark and Amber.
On The Dwight Path
But why burn the handsome chops of Norman Reedus? Well, if Daryl does kiss the iron it would certainly solidify his blossoming bromance with Dwight — "what bromance," I hear you cry? You may spot similarities between Dwight and Daryl, and it isn't just a love for crossbows and motorbikes — it was alluded to in "The Cell" that the pair aren't actually too dissimilar. Austin Amelio has since said:
"Daryl has been around and he’s kind of been in some awkward situations with me and Sherry and, in a weird, twisted, dark way, it’s like we had a moment of connection right there, and we’re kind of getting where each other is coming from."
With two big characters like Dwight and Daryl occupying the same space, I can't see both of them being there too long, but luckily the comics point to Dwight spending a lot less time at The Sanctuary moving forwards. Comic Dwight is eventually captured by Rick's group and defects to the side of good, helping lead the attack against Negan. Something needs to break Daryl, and "The Cell" proved that he doesn't scare easily — a molten hot iron would certainly make me reconsider my next move.
In Dwight's absence, Daryl could take on the de-facto role as Negan's right-hand man — a phrase we keep hearing being branded around. Personally I don't think the show would take fan-favorite Daryl and completely flip his loyalties, but stranger things have happened. The other option is that Dwight has a rare moment of clarity and helps Daryl escape after his new look ironing — again, stranger things have happened. Otherwise, I don't see how Daryl gets out of this one!
So far Daryl has escaped relatively unharmed from his run-ins with danger across the seven seasons, but ask yourself, "how lucky can one guy be?" We have already had the comics throw aside Rick losing his hand (for now), but our bloodlust suggests there could be more violence to come. Sure, Negan's skull-bashing set him up as the next big bad, but we need more of the sadistic comic book Negan to rain down on Rick's group and establish himself as the "new" Governor.
The iron scene HAS to come to television, so why shouldn't Daryl look like everyone's favorite pizza topping thanks to some swift justice from Negan? Secondly, they would never leave out the rest of Dwight's backstory now that Amelio has been bumped to season regular, so at least the mention of an iron will have to come soon. It looks like Sherry will have more of a part to play than just Negan's wife and Dwight's ex, so I say don't waste the scene on Mark. Let's piss off the adoring fans and burn Norman Reedus's beautiful face. Anyone hungry for grilled cheese?