As many of the commenters on the Jezebel article point out, this probably has everything to do with the conflation between Negan and Trump. No joke. The show diverted itself from the challenges of dealing with a threatening epidemic of the undead to dealing with a narcissistic relentless and unscrupulous dictator. The “fear of the powerful exploiting the masses” supplants the “fear of the outsider.” Thank you very much, already got my hands full thinking about that, so the show becomes an utterly unchallenging bore. As the human threats have become more malignant, the zombies have lost their power. In any human encounter with the undead, there is no longer any suspense about surviving. They are easily dispatched one and all with a single spiking to the head.