The actor's opened up in an incredibly honest interview.
When 'The Walking Dead' debuted its seventh season, many were excited to see exactly how evil the latest Big Bad, Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) could really be. He didn't waste any time in showing his nasty side, wiping out two of the show's main characters with his barbed wire baseball bat Lucille, and quickly proving that he would be the greatest challenge Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and his fellow survivors would ever have to face.
Norman Reedus as Daryl Dixon in 'The Walking Dead' season 6
Despite the major changes to the show, viewers didn't love everything that season 7 had to offer, and some of the episodes in the season were the least-viewed in 'The Walking Dead' history. Don't get us wrong, the show is still one of the most popular on television, but it would have been a little disappointing for everybody working on the show to see the numbers plummet like never before.
Though there have been ups and downs, some of the fan-favourite characters in the series have been its only constant. One of those is Daryl Dixon - a relatable survivor that has resonated with viewers ever since his debut. Introverted in his mannerisms, Reedus has now revealed that his own insecurities are what played into making Daryl such a complex character.
Speaking with EW, the actor explained of his first scenes: "I was super insecure and super nervous. And everyone was like, ‘Oh, who’s this new kid?” I remember the scene where I come up and I yell at Merle. I’m like, ‘Merle, we got squirrels, let’s do ‘em up!’ And they say, ‘We locked your brother on the roof.’ And I remember turning around and seeing all these faces looking at me as the new kid in school."
He went on to add: "[The first day] made me so insecure that I kind of threw everything that way and didn’t look up much and didn’t really look everybody in the eyes. I was kind of like, ‘Don’t look at me.’ And I was like, Oh, that’s who Daryl is. He’s got such a chip on his shoulder. He doesn’t think anybody likes him so he plays everything like he doesn’t look at you — unless he’s screaming at you! So that’s kind of how I found that character day one. And then I just ran with it."
Daryl is without a doubt one of the most popular characters to come from the series, and somebody who has evolved right in front of our eyes. With a strong head on his shoulders, he's done well to traverse the zombie-infested world he's now surviving, but we really saw him broken down in season 7 when captured by Negan and his band of villainous Saviors, stripped, beaten and tortured for days on end.
Popular with his comrades, he's a man who would do anything for those that he loves, but with his rash decisions sometimes come some major consequences, such as when Negan took the life of Glenn due to Daryl lashing out at him following Abraham's death.
What the future may hold for Daryl is anybody's guess, but one thing's for sure; fans will be watching on the edge of their seats, hoping he survives.
'The Walking Dead' returns on Sunday, October 22 in the US on AMC and to FOX UK on Monday, October 23.
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