Credit: AMC

Ask The Walking Dead star Andrew Lincoln what sort of character fans should brace themselves for with the arrival of Negan on Sunday’s season 6 finale, and all he can do is laugh.

“You know …” he begins, before laughing again. “Just get ready, man. Just get ready.” Lincoln shares that exec producer Greg Nicotero, who directed the episode, has called it “the best one yet,” and Lincoln seems to agree, especially when it comes to the introduction of his soon-to-be-on-screen nemesis. “I read the script and I went, ‘This is the greatest entrance ever written.’ ”

Of course, that dramatic entrance may have lead to a little jealousy among the cast when it comes to Negan actor Jeffrey Dean Morgan. “All of the guys were going, ‘Aw, man. I wish I had gotten this guy!’ ” says Lincoln with a laugh. “It’s incredible. Although it’s also kind of unbearable. Norman and I were like, ‘Ugh, all the girls on set are gonna love him.’ “

Yes, then more laughing. Followed by a more serious appreciation: “He’s just the coolest guy and everybody loves him,” says Lincoln of Morgan. “Jeffrey’s such a great guy and I’ve been a huge admirer of his since he played the Comedian [in Watchmen] and everything else he’s done. We’re going to have a lot of fun. Honestly, we are so thrilled to have him. We’re lucky people.”

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Lincoln knows that comic book fans have been eagerly awaiting Negan’s arrival and says they will not be disappointed. “We’ve been talking about this guy for a long time. It’s probably the most important casting since Rick, really. Everybody needs a hero, but I think they probably need a really good baddie even more. Negan’s incredibly charismatic. In this deranged society, there is a kind of logic to the way that he is running the place. He runs a tight ship, I’ll tell you that much. I’m actually very impressed. I doff my cap to this man!”

And as for the 90-minute finale itself? “It’s an incredibly brilliant and well constructed and tense final episode,” says Lincoln. “It’s really dark, man. It’s really dark.” Consider yourself warned.

Episode Recaps

The Walking Dead

AMC's zombie thriller, based on the classic comic book serial created by Robert Kirkman.

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