The Walking Dead Bosses Dissect Season 2, Look Ahead to "Action-Packed" Season 3
Andrew Lincoln | Photo Credits: AMC
Say goodbye to the farm and hello to the gritty and dangerous prison!
That's where viewers will find the survivors when The Walking Dead returns for Season 3. But don't expect the prison to be a new stronghold for Rick (Andrew Lincoln) & Co. in the post-apocalyptic world in which the AMC series takes place. In fact, showrunner Glen Mazzara likens it to a haunted house. (Move over, American Horror Story!)
The prison isn't the only new setting. In fact, the season will be divided between the prison and the town of Woodbury, where the newly introduced villain The Governor (David Morrissey) holds court. Could that be where the missing Merle Dixon (Michael Rooker) has been camped out all these months?
To get the scoop on Season 3 — and dissect the at-times controversial Season 2 — TVGuide.com turned to Mazzara and executive producer and comic creator Robert Kirkman to find out about the fallout from Shane's death and how this season compares to the last. "The audience will not be ahead of The Walking Dead in Season 3," teases Mazzara.
What lessons have you learned from Season 2?
Mazzara: The lessons I've learned are: 1. Keep it scary; 2. Trust the audience; and 3. Listen. I'm listening to the fans. I'm listening to a fantastic team of producers. I'm listening to one of the most talented room of writers I've ever had the pleasure of working with. I'm just fortunate enough to work with a lot of different talented groups of people who are all adding to the vision of the show.
Is there anything you would have changed or done differently in Season 2?
Kirkman: No, definitely not. There are things that I don't think are perfect, but things are going really well and people like the comics and the show, so I wouldn't want to muck anything up. Mazzara: To be honest, I don't think I would change things about Season 2. I feel that I'm very proud of Season 2. I felt that that story revealed itself in a very surprising, interesting way.
Some people thought that all the time spent on the farm slowed down the season. What do you say to that?
Mazzara: I did not hear that criticism in the second half of the season. After Sophia (Madison Lintz) was found in the barn, I don't think people felt that that was necessarily the case. I felt like we hit our stride as far as the storytelling pace. Sophia coming out of the barn brought everything to a full boil. I don't think that will be an issue with Season 3. I guarantee people will say the show is moving too fast and it's too packed. "There's too much going on, I can't take it, it's too exciting!" Trust me, I know people are going to say that because we are really hitting the ground running and we expect the audience to keep up. The audience will not be ahead of The Walking Dead in Season 3. The audience will have to work hard to keep up because we have a very accelerated pace of storytelling.
This section of the comics is very disturbing, between psychotic killers, zombie fights, rape and the murder of a very prominent character. Will that grittiness stay intact or is there a line you have to draw because it's for TV?
Mazzara: We are a bold show. We do take chances. We are committed to what we want to do and we are not going to pull punches. When you are committed to a strong point of view, not every audience member is going to like that. We're fully aware of that. That's part of being part of a cutting-edge show on cable.
Kirkman: There will definitely need to be tweaks to certain things. There are certain limitations, but I don't think those limitations dictate that we can't tell the exact same stories as the comic book. It just means we have to tell them in a different way.