In order to give Rick Grimes the proper sendoff from The Walking Dead, the cast and crew emphasized certain elements of his final episode.
Speaking to members of the press in a press conference at San Diego Comic-on, the cast opened up about Andrew Lincoln’s final moments within the show and how they made sure he was properly honored. “I mean they put us all on a horse, which was quite fun,” Lincoln said. “That was quite exciting.”
The old school feel of Rick riding a horse through a city was only the beginning, though.
“I think we’re just telling a story and trying to tell the best story we possibly can and I’m really, as everybody has said, Angela [Kang] has been extraordinary this season,” Lincoln said. “I’ve loved this season so far and I love working with all of my buddies and as people have mentioned already it’s a big collaboration. It feels free again. It feels like it’s opened up the story and the performances are more nuanced, I think, because of this time jump. It’s been really exciting jumping two years and then having this history, this fractured, sort of fragmented peace. I don’t want to keep talking. I want to head that way, but I love this season. I don’t think there’s any desire to try and make it anything but telling the best story possible and to continue the story. The episode that … I was going to really do a terrible, big spoiler there!”
Michonne actress Danai Gurira expressed a similar sentiment when describing the cast’s approach to Lincoln’s exit.
“I think the best way to honor Rick and Andy is to stay true to telling a really honest story and not to go some big, bold place that’s out of the realm of that tone that we’ve been trying to connect to since, he said, the tone of the pilot,” Gurira said. “So, I think definitely the thing that was so exciting about what Angela brought, as Andy’s mentioned, is the fact that we were able to do that, to find those sort of connections through characters being connected in very different ways this year than we’ve experienced in the past. And go to that very key example that he and Lenny set in that first episode.”