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The following post contains spoilers for The Walking Dead Season 7 finale. You've been warned!
The Walking Dead Season 7 finale was certainly something amazing. With so many twists and turns in the 90 minutes, I'm not sure anyone could predict all the things we saw happen. One twist, in particular, was even a surprise to Andrew Lincoln who swears up and down that he had no idea until the day they filmed it. Here's Lincoln talking about how he avoids spoilers, and how he learned of Jadis and The Scavengers betrayal of Alexandria for the Saviors:
Nope. Nope. Nope. No clue. I'm serious when I say that I don't ask for any information. I don't want to know. Obviously, if there are things like his relationship with Michonne I would prefer to know that there are seeds being sown, but with big reveals like this, I love learning on the day. I think it's much, much stronger. Because no matter how good you are, there's an inherent sense that you might play something that may signal. I read it, and I went, 'Ooooooh, it's so smart!' Because you know what the writers did is they put that really good joke in before and it diffuses, and it's such a smart way of going, 'Oh, they're never do that,' because you just think, 'Oh, they're funny.' It's so good because it deflects and then it reveals. All the EPs asked me, 'Did you see it coming?' And I went, 'I didn't see it.'
No word as to whether anyone else in The Walking Dead crew knew about that moment, but hats off to Andrew Lincoln being able to elicit such an emotional response, having learned those plot points the day of. I guess the fear is knowing big twists might affect Andrew Lincoln's performance in previous episodes. But its delightful to learn that the betrayal was as much a surprise for Rick as it was for the audience watching. It's a shame the finale ratings didn't reflect how truly great of an episode this was.
Reading this interview with EW, you really have to give it up for Andrew Lincoln as an actor. Besides the fact that he walked onto the set mentally blind to some of the biggest twists for Season 7 of The Walking Dead, he also was able to keep a straight face while a man in a blue unitard pretended to be a lion. It takes some mental fortitude to block that out while filming one of the most intense scenes we've seen between Negan and Rick. I guess I personally would probably feel more comfortable with that as opposed to an actual man-eating tiger, but I would probably need a couple takes to get the chuckles out.
Sadly, the soonest we'll be seeing any zombies on AMC will be when Fear The Walking Dead returns June 4th. As for Season 8 of The Walking Dead, that wait will be much longer, but we've reported the showrunners are already banging out the details of the season even as we speak. Be sure to keep up with us for all the updates, and keep track of all television via our midseason premiere guide and summer premiere schedule.