It’s a good time to be a fan of The Walking Dead. There’s a highly anticipated spin off on the way, the comic book is flourishing with no end in sight, there’s a The Walking Dead beer now, and of course the new season of the hit series premieres October 11th. There’s also the release of The Walking Dead Season Five on DVD and Blu-Ray on August 25th. In celebration, we thought we’d list our five favorite bad ass Daryl Dixon moments so far. Like everyone, we’re big fans of Dixon, and consider his character arc brutally compelling and complex. Norman Reedus has helped to create a modern pop culture icon who will likely be celebrated by fans for decades. So here’s a top five for one of our favorite characters of “The Walking Dead” Universe.
5. Daryl Looks for Sophia (Season 2, Chupacabra)
Daryl literally put his life on the line to look for some trace of Sophia in season two. He is thrown off of a horse, he’s knocked down a hillside, stabbing himself with an arrow, he ruins his crossbow, and is nearly gnawed on by two walkers, et al. Daryl puts himself through the wringer to look for some hope for his group and give them something to look forward to. In “Chupacabra” Daryl goes to the end of the Earth and relies on his primitive habits to conquer himself while attempting to find some trace of Carol’s daughter. He fails, but deep down he wins the battle against his own fears.
4. Daryl Bashes Heads with Bob (Season 4, Isolation)
With the prison hanging on the line and a bunch of its residents dying from the super flu, Daryl and co head out to find medicine from the local lab. While looking for the necessary medications, Bob sneaks away for a moment. While running from a herd of the dead, Bob nearly loses his bag and his life, only for the group to learn Bob was trying to save a bottle of liquor. The ex alcoholic enrages the group prompting Daryl to try to toss the bottle away. When Bob reaches for his gun, Daryl challenges his stance, bashing heads with him, and gives him a stern warning about not drinking until the mission is through.
3. Daryl vs. Tank (Season 4, Too Far Gone)
When the governor invaded Rick’s camp in the prison, he brought with him hell. He convinced an entire group of armed soldiers to go against others in an attempt to seize the prison, and he had with him a functional war tank, along with a pilot willing to do whatever it took to follow the rules. Daryl was on the front line of the war, battling everyone he came across, and is the only one capable of bringing down the war tank by shoving a live grenade down its cannon. With one swift motion he destroys the tank and kills the pilot.
2. Saving T Dogg from a Herd (Season 2, What Lies Ahead)
It’s T Dogg’s fault that Merle was left to die on the roof in Atlanta. It’s T Dogg’s fault that he had to cut his own hand off to survive. So Daryl had no justification to save T Dogg’s life other than, he’s one of the group. During the season premiere of The Walking Dead season two, a massive herd comes barreling down on the highway prompting the group to find cover. T Dogg gashes his arm and is left vulnerable. Until Daryl steps in and saves his life, as well as his own. It’s one of the many steps forward in to Daryl becoming a reliable enforcer for Rick’s group.
1. Li’l Asskicker (Season 3, Say the Word)
As Lincoln said, no man is taller than when he bends down to pick up a child. During season three, Rick is rendered catatonic, and has a newborn baby to take care of. Little Judith. Who leads the charge to find her food and care for her? Why Daryl of course. He inspires everyone to get off their asses, wipe their tears, and fight for the life of a new born baby that hadn’t been in the world for more than a few hours. With Maggie, the pair venture out in to the wilderness to find baby formula. When they return, Daryl cradles Judith nicknaming her “Li’l Asskicker,” and feeds her before the eyes of the group of survivors. And women everywhere melted in their seats and found a new reason to root for a man who was once the group pariah.