The Walking Dead: Dead City Episode 5 Twist Explained

The Walking Dead: Dead City revealed a massive deception perpetrated by Maggie in the spinoff. Since the beginning of the series, it was understood that Maggie needed Negan’s help because of his knowledge about her son’s captor, the Croat. However, The Walking Dead: Dead City episode 5’s ending twist clarifies that things were never what they seemed.

The Walking Dead: Dead City has been a wild ride so far, and the latest episode, “The Deal,” certainly didn’t disappoint. The episode featured a major twist that revealed that Maggie had been lying to Negan about the circumstances of Hershel’s capture.

This revelation raises several questions. Has Maggie been lying to Negan? What is her real plan? And what will Negan do when he finds out the truth?

Yes, Maggie lied to Negan about the Croat and the circumstances of Hershel’s capture. She told him that the Croat had stolen Hilltop’s grain and was using Herschel as a hostage to force her into procuring more.

There are a few reasons why Maggie might have lied to Negan:

  1. She may have been worried that he would refuse to help her if he knew the truth.
  2. She may have been trying to protect him from the Croat.
  3. She may have simply been trying to keep her options open.

Whatever her reasons, Maggie’s lie has had severe consequences. It has led to Ginny’s distrust of her and put Negan in danger. It remains to be seen how this will all play out, but it is clear that Maggie’s lie has significantly impacted the story.

1. Maggie’s Deal With The Croat: Negan For Hershel

The final minutes of The Walking Dead:Dead City’s penultimate episode justified Ginny’s suspicions of Maggie. As it turns out, she has been lying on more than one count. A flashback revealed that when the Croat took Herschel, he showed her one of Negan’s wanted posters. This sent the message that the Croat would give up Herschel if she traded him for Negan.

That, not Negan’s history with the Croat, was why he was essential to her rescue mission in Dead City. That adds up, given Maggie’s determination to keep him around. After all, Negan’s information may have made him valuable to her efforts but perhaps not indispensable.

Curiously, The Walking Dead: Dead City’s setup for its Maggie reveal has been in place since the second episode. While at the new Hilltop, Ginny was shown watching someone climb up the ladder of the grain silo. And as another flashback confirmed, the scene hinted the Hilltop has plenty of grain.

This is ultimately what made Ginny so sure that Maggie couldn’t be trusted. She knew then that Maggie had lied when she claimed that the Croat took all of it and was using Herschel as a hostage to force her into procuring more. The grain was all part of her elaborate ruse to get Negan to Manhattan.

The Walking Dead: Dead City Episode 5 Maggie Twist Explained
Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Lauren Cohan in The Walking Dead: Dead City (2023) | Source: IMDb

2. Why does the Croat Want Negan?

The Croat wants Negan for two reasons. First, he is a wanted man in Manhattan. The Croat showed Maggie a wanted poster for Negan when he took Hershel, which suggests that he is willing to give up Hershel if Maggie trades him for Negan.

Second, the Croat is a Serb. During the Bosnian War, the Serbs committed genocide against the Croats. The Croat may want to get revenge on Negan for being a member of the Saviors, who were responsible for the deaths of many people in the apocalypse.

It is also possible that the Croat has a more personal reason for wanting Negan. In a flashback, the Croat was shown to be a prisoner of the Saviors. It is possible that he was tortured or even killed by Negan, and he now wants revenge.

Whatever the reason, the Croat’s desire for Negan is a significant obstacle for Maggie and Negan. To get Hershel back, they must find a way to deal with the Croat.

The Walking Dead: Dead City Episode 5 Maggie Twist Explained
Lauren Cohan in The Walking Dead: Dead City (2023) | Source: IMDb

Here are some other possible reasons why the Croats might want Negan:

  • Negan is a skilled leader and fighter. The Croat might want to recruit him to his group.
  • Negan knows a lot about the Saviors. The Croat might want to interrogate him to learn more about their operations.
  • Negan is a symbol of the old world. The Croat might want to kill him to symbolize the end of the ancient world and the beginning of a new one.

Ultimately, the reasons why the Croat wants Negan are unknown. However, he is a dangerous man who will stop at nothing to get what he wants.

3. Will Negan Give Himself Up To Save Hershel?

With The Walking Dead: Dead City season 1 finale approaching, it’s only a matter of time before Negan finds out why Maggie needs him. Any anger he’ll feel toward her aside, it’s worth wondering if he’d consider giving himself up.

Negan saved Herschel before, so making a heroic move isn’t necessarily new territory for him anymore. Even so, Negan said in the series premiere that he felt he had paid for his crimes, which suggests that he doesn’t think he owes it to her to save Herschel. Plus, it’s hard to imagine Negan agreeing to such a trade anyway, he knows the Croat’s reputation and would unlikely trust him.

Chances are, Maggie understands that as well. Before finding out that Negan killed Luthor, Maggie was about to tell Negan something. From the looks of things, she would confess her real intentions. If that’s true, that means Maggie may not intend to trade Negan for Herschel in The Walking Dead: Dead City. She may doubt the Croat will keep his end of the bargain.

If so, she may have decided that she needs Negan to trick the Croat, and then they can work together to get Herschel to safety. This is a plan that Negan could feasibly go along with, as it makes more sense than Negan sacrificing himself under the pretense that the Croat will keep his word.

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4. About The Walking Dead: Dead City

The Walking Dead: Dead City is an upcoming television series in The Walking Dead’s TV universe. Eli Jorné will serve as showrunner, who co-created the series along with Scott Gimple. AMC announced the spinoff in March 2022.

The spinoff will follow Maggie and Negan’s adventures through New York City as they look for Maggie’s lost son, Hershel. 

Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Lauren Cohan will reprise their roles as Negan and Maggie, respectively, along with new and old cast members. The series will premiere on June 18, 2023. 


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