Merle Dixon, the older brother of Daryl Dixon, is one of the Atlanta camp survivors. We are first introduced to him in the second episode of season one, titled Guts. It is clear he views himself as the alpha male dictator who believes he is in firm control at the department store, that is until he meets Rick Grimes.
Rick knocks him down and cuffs him to the pipes on the roof, leaving the key with T-Dog, thus putting Merle’s freedom in his hands. Upon the panic when the group go to leave the department store, T-Dog rushes back to save Merle, however he trips and drops the key down the drainpipe, leaving Merle stuck on the rooftop. The next day when the survivors return with Daryl, they find Merle’s severed right hand which he cut off to get free. He has not been seen since, other than the hallucination witnessed by his brother Daryl in Chupacabra.
Merle Dixon is played by American actor Michael Rooker, best known for his roles in Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer, Days Of Thunder, Cliffhanger, The Bone Collector, The 6th Day and of course his role as Merle in The Walking Dead. He has also appeared on a variety of TV Shows including Tremors, Stargate, Numb3rs, Law & Order and Chuck. He is currently working on a few other projects such as Pennhurst and Bolden!
- Studied Japanese martial art of Akido with Fumio Toyoda Shihan prior to establishing himself in Chicago theatre.
- Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer was Michael Rooker’s first movie which was filmed in 1986 but was not released until years later.
- He is a graduate of Chicago’s Goodman School of Drama
- Ranked #17 on Tropopkin’s Top 25 Most Intriguing People [Issue #100]
- He unofficially reprised his Henry: Portrait Of A Serial Killer role for the music video “All Wrapped Up” by heavy metal band American Head Charge.
- Lives in Los Angeles, California.
- Michael Rooker and Brian Thompson are the only actors to have acted alongside all 3 of the major action heroes of the 1980′s. Michael Rooker appeared with Sylvester Stallone in “Cliffhanger” (1993), Arnold Schwarzenegger in “The 6th Day” (2000) and Jean Claude Van Damme in “Replicant” (2001). Brian Thompson appeared with Sylvester Stallone in Cobra(1986), Arnold Schwarzenegger in Terminator(1984) and Jean Claude Van Damme in Lionheart(1990).