11:00am PT by Lesley Goldberg
'Walking Dead': Is Morgan Returning? Can the Governor Survive the Season? The Cast Teases What's to Come
It's almost crunch time on AMC's The Walking Dead. With five episodes remaining in its third season, there's a hint of war in the air on the zombie drama as the click is ticking down to what will likely be an epic confrontation between Rick and the Governor.
In Robert Kirkman's Image comics, on which the series is based, only one will survive the battle (which in print claimed the lives of both Lori and her newborn daughter, Judith). So can both men make it out of the season alive?
"We know that they're bound to butt heads at some point and what happens after that you'll have to watch and see," executive producer Gale Anne Hurd previews of the impending battle.
Elsewhere, Andrea will struggle with her inability to take a human life and seek peace with the assistance of another like-minded individual in Woodbury, while Glenn and Maggie's rift may grow as the former is dead-set on exacting his revenge on the leader of the prison's rival community. And in the meantime, Rick, Michonne and Carl hit the road and discover a mysterious community that features an incredible arsenal -- but whose is it?
The Hollywood Reporter caught up with the cast to get the scoop on what's to come in the remainder of the season.
Will Andrea regret not killing the Governor in his sleep?
"She may come to regret it; she is not a cold-blooded killer and has never killed a human in her life. That is not who Andrea is," co-star Laurie Holden says, noting Andrea will use the fact that the Governor has lost both his wife and daughter. "Just as Dale was fighting for humanity and people, Andrea is on the same trajectory. As we move forward, Andrea is going to try to reach the Governor's humanity, his soul, the man that he once was and attempt to make peace that way."
Can the peace-loving Andrea survive the season?
With the body count expected to rise in the remaining episodes, Holden says the losses will be "people that you've come to know and love." "Do I think the writing is on the wall for Andrea? No. Anything is possible. She' s fighting for greater good. Wouldn't it be a great story if goodness and humanity prevailed?"
Will Tyreese and Michonne take a page from the comics and hook up?
With the former now setting up shop in Woodbury and the latter fighting alongside Rick against the Governor, Danai Gurira hinted that the series would likely go a different route than the prison romance depicted in the comics. "The thing that's really exciting is how there's so much to discover and unravel with these characters and do it in a whole new fresh way," she says, noting Michonne has a "good shot" at surviving the season. "We're not going to do it the same way and you wouldn't want us to do it the same way that things happen in the comic book. It's a long game and it's fun to see how it all comes together."
Who's the Governor's biggest target?
Michonne killed the Governor's zombie daughter, Penny, and took his eye; Rick took out some of his core group during their attack to rescue Glenn and Maggie; Merle barely escaped being pitted against his brother, Daryl. But the Governor has his eye (zing!) on one person in particular. "It's Michonne, it's always Michonne," David Morrissey says. "The way that she brutally killed his daughter, she's the focus. He knows that he might have to through Rick to get her but it's definitely her. She's his target."
Can the Governor make it to season four?
In the comics, one of the Governor's soldiers turned her gun on her leader after realizing she'd taken the life of a mother and her newborn daughter. Morrissey, for one, hopes his days on the series aren't numbered. "We'll have to wait and see if he survives but I sure as hell hope so. He's going to fight tooth and nail with everything he's got to survive. He is a survivor." Kirkman, meanwhile, noted that both Rick and the Governor's lives are in jeopardy. "It's entirely possible [that the Governor could make it to season four]," he says. "It's a very dangerous world and things are just getting more dangerous as Rick and the Governor seem to both be kind of losing their minds in different ways and are on this huge collision course. Something bad is going to happen to one of them. We'll see where things go."
So could The Walking Dead continue without Rick?
"I'll admit that Rick is definitely the thematic core, the character we met first, and the character whose journey we've been following. It's an unexpected series, so who really knows. Maybe, I dunno!" Kirkman says with a laugh. Andrew Lincoln, meanwhile, says Rick's odds of survival were cut down after Lori's death. "After they took Rick's wife away, I think Rick lost about 20 percent. I'd say 50-50 [on him surviving the season]!"
What's with the talk of character additions?
Outgoing showrunner Glen Mazzara has hinted that "most of the characters" for the season had been introduced heading into the final eight episodes of the season. So who is it? "It would be pretty cool if Morgan came back but I haven't heard anything!" Kirkman says with a laugh. We'd bet our katana sword on his return, especially when you check out this teaser at the 22-second mark. What kind of shape whomever that masked gunman is in, however, is unclear when you check out the booby-trapped compound he's apparently living in as seen by the exclusive photos above and below.
Will there be a softer side of … Merle?
Merle and Daryl are reunited but it doesn't feel so fine for everyone at the prison, with Michonne, Glenn and Maggie all considering him persona non grata. Norman Reedus says there's hope for his on-screen brother to become an essential member of the prison's forces. "You could only hope he softens up," Reedus says of Merle. "That's the one thing about him -- he's always looking for his brother so he does have a soft side. He'll do anything to find his brother and Rick saw Daryl do anything to find Merle. There is a part of him that cares somewhere down there."
Will Glenn's vendetta destroy his relationship with Maggie?
Steven Yeun says Glenn's decision making is clouded by his need to destroy the Governor for sexually assaulting Maggie (Lauren Cohan). "Glenn wants the Governor's head. He wants to kill him. He wants to bring as much pain as he feels and he thinks Maggie has felt, tenfold, back on the Governor and that's all he's thinking about," he says. "It's dangerous territory especially coming from a young man. He doesn't know everything about life and he hasn't been in that situation before. He's acting off of pure, young emotion. That is never good and he might make some foolish choices and decisions. He might push people away for a goal he thinks he should be getting rather than focusing on the things that are around him."
What are you looking forward to seeing in the final five episodes of the season? Hit the comments with your thoughts. The Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9 p.m. on AMC. Check out two exclusive images from Sunday's episode, titled "Clear" and penned by new showrunner Scott Gimple, above and below.