The Walking Dead left things at an interesting place last season, with Maggie Rhee appearing to plot against Rick Grimes.
Based on the season 9 trailer, it’s not just Rick’s controversial decision to spare Negan that leads to Maggie feeling disillusioned about his leadership, despite efforts from everybody to move into a peaceful era following Negan’s defeat.
Lauren Cohan plays the Hilltop leader, and at San Diego Comic-Con, she teased the “conflict” that we’ll be seeing a lot of when the show returns this autumn.
“We left on a pretty sharp note, a little tense,” she said at the Comic-Con panel. “There’s a lot of conflict, but it’s conflict between people who love each other that are all working towards what should be a bigger, brighter, stronger future.”
Cohan added that the future “looks different for everybody, and that’s what we get to go into”.
When asked if Maggie could ever forgive Negan, she said: “I think it’s going to be interesting, because we all have ideas about what we would do in certain situations and who we want to be and the legacy we want to leave. And when it really comes down to it, what do you do? That’s what the season’s about.”
And director Greg Nicotero told media including Digital Spy at a Comic-Con press conference that not everybody will necessarily be on the same side.
“They’re not at each other’s throats, but they’re still not really down with the decisions that their friends made,” he said.
New showrunner Angela Kang added: “This season, there were some really exciting opportunities to feature this core cast that have such deep relationships that we’ve seen develop over years and years, that audiences really invested in, that we’re invested in as storytellers.
“You will see a lot more screen time for some of these relationships, with Daryl and Carol, Rick and Maggie, Michonne and Rick – you just want to dive deep into these relationships because there’s a lot of emotional weight to them.”
Norman Reedus also said at the same press conference that one scene between Daryl and Rick was the most challenging for him to film on the show ever, calling it “f**king epic”.
This new season will see Andrew Lincoln exit from his role as Rick Grimes midway through. Cohan’s future on the show is also unclear, but she will at least be appearing in six of the first eight episodes of season 9.
Oscar nominee and BAFTA winner Samantha Morton is joining to play Alpha, leader of new threat The Whisperers, with the new season set to premiere on October 7 on AMC in the US and shortly afterwards on FOX and NOW TV in the UK.
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