It’s a savage world that the denizens of post-apocalyptic Georgia inhabit. If you’re not fending off zombies, you’ll eventually be forced to turn your weapon against a bloodthirsty gang of robbers, cannibals or cult members who would otherwise have killed you first. Some members of Team Rick take to disposing of these people like a duck to water. Others, like Morgan, are loudly opposed to it on a moral level and absolutely refuse no matter what the circumstances are.
Then there’s Glenn. Glenn has never taken a life in the entire six-season history of the show. He’s dispatched Walkers, but never a human being. Is there a reason for this? Entertainment Weekly asked Steven Yeun.
….Part of that is echoing from the last season, the idea that sometimes we can be out there too long, and that we can completely lose ourselves. And to that extent as well, there’s the fact that Glenn has not killed another human being as of yet, and it’s not from a place of Glenn saying, ‘I can never do that,’ but it’s more along the lines of Glenn has not faced a situation where he’s been forced to. And if he isn’t forced to, he chooses not to, because I think for him, he’s trying to preserve a part of himself to say that anything that I do, I want to be able to look my kid in the eye and say, ‘Hey, I lived this way, and I’m still here. So you can live this way, and you can still be here as well.’ I think everything’s kind of a prep for this kid, and so, yeah, I mean, that’s kind of where they’re at right now with the baby.
It’s not entirely correct that Glenn has never been in a kill-or-be-killed situation. One happened at the end of last season, when Nicholas tried to dispose of him in the woods. Instead of taking the physical way out of the situation, Glenn managed to talk Nicholas out of it.
A bigger question is, once he and Maggie are parents, would he be willing to remain a pacifist if the life of his baby was threatened? Parental protection can be a powerful drive. Might this finally push him over the edge?