"The Walking Dead" is in the middle of airing its final, 11th season.
Looking back at the show, Insider is sharing alternate posters for "TWD's" seventh season premiere.
The posters are featured in "The Art of AMC's The Walking Dead Universe," out now.
Jeffrey Dean Morgan's entry onto "The Walking Dead" as Negan, the loud, foul-mouthed leader of the Saviors, rattled fans when he killed not one, but two fan favorites across the show's season six finale and season seven premiere.
As "TWD" gears up for its final 16 episodes starting in February, Insider is looking back at AMC's hit series, showcasing six concept posters designed for the series' seventh season.
Other than the show's iconic season one poster, the show's seventh season poster is particularly memorable and worth revisiting for, at least, two reasons.
It was the first time Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) wasn't featured on the show's key art. Instead, the series' new antagonist, Negan, took center stage, an ominous hint at a very different season to come. The season seven premiere also left many fans upset and departing the series for good, citing its brutality.
The following concept art is a sample of more than 40 designs for season seven artwork featured in "The Art of AMC's The Walking Dead Universe" by Matthew K. Manning, out now. Most of the alternate versions utilized some of Negan's alternate catch phrases or dialogue in his lengthy season six finale speech paired with images of him and his barb-wired baseball bat. Others showcased ominous imagery of Rick, Michonne, and the rest of the survivors.
Not seen here, some of our favorites included individual Polaroids of Rick's group attached to Negan's bat and a roulette wheel which showcased the faces in Negan's lineup.
This poster is a more menacing take on the final key art.
This version of the poster uses all of the same colors as the official season seven key art, but uses the "Eeny, Meeny, Miny, Moe" tagline said by Negan.
This one was likely passed on because it's a little more dark with the dripping blood. It's also tough to tell that this is Jeffrey Dean Morgan since he's heavily shadowed here.
The coolest design in this roundup marries a skull inside of Negan's upside-down frame.
"And You Are It" are some of the final words Negan says before delivering his death blows to Abraham.
The decision of this poster is clever. As the reader's eye moves down past the words, it lands on the skull, an ominous reminder of the death to come after those words are uttered. As your eyes move down farther, you see Negan's head, the person responsible for that death.
It's tough to make out whether or not Rick or, perhaps, Abraham (who Negan decides to kill) is the person highlighted underneath the skull's nose. It's a bit tough to tell, but would have been a brilliant way to tease the impending character death. However, it also may have revealed a bit too much.
Again, this design was probably considered a bit too dark and a little scary.
Another design simply focused on Negan's bat, Lucille.
This design may have been too simple and generic. While Lucille means something to fans of the comic and show, if AMC's goal was to draw in other viewers who may have dropped off of the show a few seasons back or new fans, this poster likely wouldn't have done much to push the needle.
Here, we see another Lucille-centric poster.
This one is a little more specific than the last. The cool bit to see here is that this poster design doesn't have a premiere date on it, yet. So you get to see what the key art looks like in its early design stages.
Negan's on top of the Earth, which doubles as a droplet of blood, in this one.
Another early design showed Negan on top of the world, in control of everything. The image of Negan on top of the world doubles for for a spot of blood, teasing the eventual beating the character doled out, taking the lives of both Abraham and Glenn.
You can also notice a reference to Negan's satellite station and his home, the Sanctuary, on the droplet. On the season six finale, and throughout some of season seven, Negan and his Savior group really did feel like they were inescapable.
This design would have used a different version of "The Walking Dead" logo.
This last poster is, perhaps, the most grim.
Though at first glance it just looks like 11 crows sitting on a wire, it's a dark parallel to the season six finale when you consider that each bird represents one of the survivors in Negan's lineup.
The wire they're all sitting on is the barbed wire wrapped around Negan's beloved bat, Lucille. As for that crow flying away? That's likely representing the one life Negan was supposed to take until he wound up killing more than one person.
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