There is only one Walking Dead episode left in 2016, and one of the stars says to brace yourself for what is to come this Sunday night. “We certainly end the midseason with a bang,” Josh McDermitt, who plays Eugene, told us when he stopped by EW Morning Live (Entertainment Weekly Radio, SiriusXM, channel 105) to talk zombies and what not.
“The wolf is in the hen house,” says McDermitt of Negan’s return in Alexandria, conveniently forgetting the fact that there actually were Wolves in Alexandria last season. “I think the phrase is ‘fox in the hen house,’ but Negan is very much a wolf. I would not call him a fox. The way the last episode ended, with him holding baby Judith, is pretty disgusting, and we’re gonna pick up shortly after that and see what goes down. You know, Rick right now is not in Alexandria. He’s off on a supply run or something with Aaron, so we’re gonna see more of that and what happens there. And hopefully, he can make it back to Alexandria in time to see Negan basically becoming the adoptive father to baby Judith and Carl. And everything is going to do go down in Alexandria.”
Even without Negan there, it appears some stuff is already going down, especially with Eugene. Last season, the mulleted wonder got into a huge fight at the machine factory with Abraham, telling his partner-in-grime that he didn’t need his help anymore because he could take care of himself. So back to the factory he went this week, and back to another huge fight —this time with Rosita, who called him a coward and weak and said, “The only reason you’re alive is because you lied and people feel sorry for you.” Ouch.
But instead of fighting back this time, Eugene sat there and took the abuse. What changed in him? “He felt like he was a survivor at the end of last season,” explains McDermitt. “And then his perception of the world changed. He’s starting to figure out, oh, maybe I’m not a survivor. Or, if I am, what’s that going to look like? He definitely just wants people to be safe. He doesn’t want anybody to get hurt anymore. We’ve already lost two of his closest friends.… It’s unnerving for him.
“So when she’s yelling at him and basically manipulating him into getting her way, it’s sort of a Pavlov’s dogs sort of thing. I think this isn’t the first time she’s called him out as being a wimp and a coward. She did that in season 6 right before the tower fell and we had the crush of walkers scene where we did weapons training and she yelled at him there too, to get him to step up. Basically, he’s in his own head and he’s losing confidence about being a survivor and so this is so her tough love of getting him to do what she needs him to do for the betterment of the group.”
Seeing as how Eugene keeps getting into big arguments there, shouldn’t he just avoid the factory altogether from now on? No way, says McDermitt. “I hope to keep going back to that machine shop because we certainly need bullets. I guess we need guns. Negan took the guns.”
We’ll see if and when Eugene makes it back there at some point. And we’ll find out exactly what kind of “bang” he’s talking about when The Walking Dead midseason finale airs this Sunday night at 9 p.m. on AMC. Listen to our interview with Jeffrey Dean Morgan (along with T.J. Miller and Courtney B. Vance) in the SoundCloud below, and for more Walking Dead scoop, follow me on Twitter @DaltonRoss.[soundcloud url="https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/296728075" params="auto_play=false&hide_related=false&visual=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&color=ff5500" width="100%" height="166" iframe="true" /]
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