‘The Walking Dead’ boss says show will not tone down violence

Second half of Season Seven will resume next month

The Walking Dead‘s executive producer Greg Nicotero has denied that violence in the show will be toned down.

Last week, executive producer Gale Anne Hurd said that the show toned down its violent content following criticism over its Season Seven premiere.

“We were able to look at the feedback on the level of violence,” Hurd said. “We did tone it down for episodes we were still filming for later on in the season.”

But Nicotero said although there has been less violence since the first episode, they have no intention of sticking to that pattern.

“As brutal as that Episode One was, it’s still part of our storytelling bible, which is what the world is about,” he told Entertainment Weekly.

“I don’t think we would ever edit ourselves, and I think – even after looking at that episode One again – as tough as it was for people to watch, I don’t think we would have done it any differently. I don’t think we’ll ever pull ourselves back. There is definitely a difference between violence against walkers and human on human violence, but truthfully, we’re serving our story.”

Showrunner Scott M. Gimple also clarified Hurd’s comments.

“The violence in the premiere was pronounced for a reason. The awfulness of what happened to the characters was very specific to that episode and the beginning of this whole new story,” he said

“I don’t think like that’s the base level of violence that necessarily should be on the show. It should be specific to a story and a purpose, and there was a purpose of traumatising these characters to a point where maybe they would have been docile for the rest of their lives, which was Negan’s point.

“But I will say again, the violence in the premiere was for a specific narrative purpose and I would never say that that’s the baseline amount of violence that we would show on the show. If we’re ever going to see something that pronounced, there needs to be a specific narrative purpose for it.”

The first half of The Walking Dead’s seventh season was blighted by falling ratings and criticism from fans, with a 7 million drop in viewers in the US by the time the eighth episode, ‘Hearts Still Beating’, aired in December.

The season broke off for its traditional mid-season break on December 11. The final eight episodes of season seven will start to air weekly next month. The Walking Dead will return to screens in the US on February 12.