Sunday’s episode of “The Walking Dead” may have lacked some of the game-changing/head-bashing moments of previous installments, but Xander Berkeley, who plays Hilltop Colony leader Gregory, and Tom Payne, who plays Hilltop Colony’s Jesus, still had plenty to talk about.
This was the first we’d seen of Maggie (Lauren Cohan) since the season premiere, and while she did suffer from a separated placenta, her and Glenn’s baby is still alive. And after monster tractor-ing a walker-drawing car sent into Hilltop by the Saviors, she seems to be the front runner to displace Gregory. If Gregory doesn’t end up doing the right thing, Cohan said in an interview that aired during “Talking Dead,” “They’ll have Hilltop, and he won’t.”
Loner Jesus, who until Maggie and Sasha (Soneque Martin-Green) showed up at Hilltop was a bit disengaged from the colony. “With the arrival of Maggie and Sasha he realizes things could maybe work a bit better,” Payne told “Talking Dead” host Chris Hardwick. “Gregory is actually quite dangerous in his way.”
How dangerous? “Anyone who fears for their life more than they care for others’ lives is a bomb waiting to go off,” said Martin-Green. “And they are going to get you in trouble. And if you leave it unattended, they will get you killed.”
He almost did, attempting to hand over Maggie and Sasha to the visiting Saviors. “That’s a big turning point for [Jesus],” Payne said. “He’s not a coward, he needed a bit of help. He can’t sort of Hilltop on his own. This could be a new dawn for Hilltop.”
And now Jesus and Carl (Chandler Riggs) are on their way to Negan’s fortress. What lies ahead for the two? “He’s like, ‘This is fun,'” Payne said. “Jesus is Hilltop’s trump card.”