The mid-season premiere of AMC's "The Walking Dead" is just around the corner! Zap2It had a chance to speak with Danai Gurira about what to expect from Michonne and the remaining survivors as a clash with The Governor looms on the horizon.
The reaction to Gurira's character, the enigmatic and tough to read Michonne, has been for the most part positive, as viewers naturally gravitated to her. "A lot of people just love that she's a badass. A lot of female friends keep asking my brother, 'Was she always tough like that? How did she get like that? What should we do to be like that?' -- in terms of having the strength that the character has," Gurira said. "That was surprising to me. I've been encountering little girls, like 12-year-old girls, who really love the character, which I didn't expect but I think is really special."
Gurira sees the midseason finale as a sort of turning point not only in the series but for her character in particular, moving away from the solitary don't-trust-anybody attitude and embracing Rick and his group of survivors. "It was very deliberate to make her unreadable and an enigma. She's not going to be the sort of character you get to know quickly. That's who she is. The desire people have to see her unravel in a way, it's not going to be what they get. However, the last episode [showed] the way the tides are shifting for her. She had the showdown with Andrea, and Andrea was really clearly -- with a gun in her hand -- choosing the other side," the actress said. "The next time you see [Michonne] she's not running off by herself saying, 'Screw everybody.' She's going back to Rick and offering her services to him. That's her saying, 'I need a community and I need to be with people.' It's not conventionally done, because she's not conventional but that's a break for her. That's an obvious turning point."
She continued, "That end of episode 8 was the set-up for the fact that she knows she needs to be with people and figure out how to become a person again. I think she shut down in lots of ways. It was her response to PTSD. I think everybody has a type of PTSD. With Michonne, you don't see her journeying into it, you just see her manifestation of it and how she has adapted."
As for the departing showrunner Glen Mazzara, who was key to bringing Gurira and her blade-wielding character into the series this season, the actress has nothing but good things to say. "He was a lovely and wonderful man to me. I think the show, you know, they do what they need to do as a whole. I think he did what he needed to do," she said. "I don't know the details of any of [Mazzara's exit], really. The people [behind the scenes] reach from within and take care of the show continually, and it's really allowed the show to remain a very strong product. So I'm not scared for the show in any way, and I'm not scared for Glen because he's very talented. I know he has a lot of great stuff ahead of him."
Don't miss the new episode of "The Walking Dead," Sunday night on AMC!