‘The Walking Dead’s Lauren Cohan: This Is ‘the ‘Mission: Impossible’ of Seasons’
It’s been a particular rough apocalypse for The Walking Dead‘s Maggie Greene (Lauren Cohan). In Season 4, she lost her father Hershel (Scott Wilson) during The Governor’s (David Morrissey) assault on the prison. And last year, her younger half-sister Beth (Emily Kinney) was murdered in Grady Memorial Hospital just minutes before Maggie arrived.
Now, as her group finds sanctuary thanks to the Alexandria Safe Zone, Maggie is determined to settle down and start fresh in her new home. She jumped headfirst into her role as assistant to community leader Deanna Monroe (Tovah Feldshuh), and her relationship with husband Glenn (Steven Yeun) is stronger than ever. But as Maggie and the rest of the survivors will soon discover, there are threats lurking just outside the walls that could jeopardize this newfound safety.
We spoke to Cohan about the “different energy” surrounding Season 6 and what’s ahead for Maggie.
Does Season 6 feel different to you?
Yeah, it’s a different energy. It’s just been a much bigger season. It’s the Mission: Impossible of seasons, actually. I don’t know where people’s stamina is coming from. Everyone has huge story lines. In previous seasons, there have been characters who have taken a bit of a back foot during the season, but this year we definitely get these crazy action stories thrust onto every character. I’ve had my most fun this year. There are days where I’m exhausted and disgusting, but I don’t want the stunts to end. What always amazes me about the show is that there are these little escalations in stake and in story. The only place we had left to go was that heightening of action.
Where do we pick up with Maggie?
We pick up right after the audience left us with the execution. So Maggie is trying to rejoin these disparate characters and forces. She is just trying to be there in support of Deanna.
She’s really bought into Alexandria and Deanna…
Yes, one million percent. Her gut just tells her that it’s good, it’s right and it’s the structure that we need. We can’t keep roaming. We’ve found safe holes, but we’ve never stopped to create a philosophy or follow our hearts. As a group, what do we want to create that’s something that we will really fight to preserve that goes beyond just projecting the people that we love? You can’t only keep fighting for the people around you because there has to be a grander purpose. Deanna has this very firm, solid philosophy that is bigger than any of them, and that’s why I think Maggie feels so strongly about it. If everybody knows their place and everybody’s working towards a greater goal, then you can all coexist. You don’t have to love each other, and there are characters that she might have some reservations about, but you just have to keep finding the common purpose that we can work towards. That’s what Alexandria has represented, even within tragedy. Maggie respects and loves Deanna so much that in Season 6, she helps give some of her own strength back to her.
So what is her reaction when she sees Deanna give Rick (Andrew Lincoln) permission to pull the trigger?
Everything’s possible now. We’ve always known that Rick’s strengths are protection, loyalty and his passion for the people that he loves. Rick does what he knows to be right and that has steered us right so many times. Rick is doing it for the right reason.
How is her relationship with Glenn this year?
Great. You know those two, they’re so in love! [Laughs]
Has Alexandria changed them at all?
Yeah, they just know how to communicate with each other. They know how to make the other one be their best even with their separate roles. They’re each playing to their strengths so much that they don’t get to spend as much time together because they’re both doing the most they can do for the good of the group. I think it’s pretty hot, actually! But their bond is very, very strong. It’s like being at a party and seeing your husband on the other side of the room. You just look at them and you know. Maggie and Glenn are just really coming into their absolute strongest as leaders, partners and as people who are passionate about making this community good for everybody. They have these strengths from being on the road that the rest of Alexandria doesn’t have. They have a duty to use strengths to each and protect people.
The Walking Dead premieres Sunday, October 11 at 9/8c on AMC.