In their continued efforts to shock and tease us all into absolute hysteria before the next season of “The Walking Dead,” AMC has released a new production photo of Michael Rooker as Merle Dixon. That’s right, zombiephiles: Merle is back, and with a vengeance… literally.
This new photo of Merle comes just after the sneak peeks of both Danai Gurira as Michonne and David Morrissey as the Governor. It depicts Merle, sans hand but sporting a new arm accessory in its place, holding his finger to his lips and looking suitably menacing.
Of course this photo of Michael Rooker as Merle raises almost as many questions as it answers. For one, who is he with? Recently we got our first look at David Morrissey as the infamous Governor, the comic book’s most feared villain. Could Merle be hanging out with the main antagonist of the new season? Could he even be the Governor’s right-hand man (pun intended)?
Also, how will Merle’ reappearance affect his brother Daryl? Arguably one of the most interesting new characters in the series (neither Daryl nor Merle appeared in the comic books), Daryl has displayed a pragmatism and a compassion for his fellow survivors that is in direct contrast to the brief glimpse we got of his brother in season one. Could Merle’s return from the dead (well, not in the literal sense, which is also highly likely on “The Walking Dead”) make Daryl turn to the Dark Side?
Fans will have to wait until the fall to find out what this shocking new photo of Michael Rooker as Merle will mean for the series.