After the SHOCKING events of this week’s episode of The Walking Dead, we are now gearing up for the season finale with much anticipation.
It is no secret that fans have voiced their frustrations with the show but it does appear with the introduction of the Whisperers that the tide is turning.
We wade through the mountain of dismembered Walkers and catch up with show veteran Seth Gilliam, who plays Father Gabriel, to talk about the current season, spin-off movies and the possibility of a revival or reboot of The Wire.
This week’s episode is heart breaking. How can the season finale follow that?
Yes! I am not sure it can top it because it was pretty epic. It does take another turn or two so I think it will be just as interesting and entertaining.
But not as bloody.
Norman Reedus mentioned on The Tonight Show that we’ll need a tissue or two…
Yeah, I think that’s kind of been the case for all the finales [laughs]
With the Whisperers now very much in the mix does this signal the beginning of the end for Father Gabriel given his story in the comics…?
It would seem to be a bad sign of what is to come for Father Gabriel. We’ll see what the writers have in store for that…
If/when you do leave the show do you want it to be a complete gore-fest?
I would hope it’s heroic, whatever it may be. Gore is fine, it’s a gory show.
But, yeah, Father Gabriel saving 15 or so sick babies from an onslaught of Walkers would be a pretty epic way to go out.
For a long time your character got a lot of heat from fans, so was it a relief for things to change and how did fans first react to you on the streets?
I don’t know if it was a relief that fans were starting to warm to him because I was enjoying playing a character unlike everybody else in the show.
I think quite frankly he is a character that most people would be like if there was a zombie apocalypse.
People like to fancy themselves as Rick or Michonne but think they’d be a lot closer to Father Gabriel and Eugene.
Yeah, I got a lot of “I don’t trust you” and “what are you up to?” For the longest time they thought Father Gabriel took Beth so I would get people yell at me in the street “where’s BETH!?”.
When Tom Payne left he mentioned how frustrated he was with where Jesus was going. How much input or collaboration do you have with the writers on where Father Gabriel’s going?
I don’t have much in terms of collaboration with the writers. Angela Kang, the new showrunner, did ask for some ideas I have about Father Gabriel and other things that might wind up in the text.
At least the conversation was open.
King Eziekel and others from The Kingdom risked their lives for a projector bulb in one episode – what one thing would you risk your life for in a zombie apocalypse to have again?
Chocolate! I’d go through a herd of Walkers for some chocolate. I don’t know if I want to give any shout outs to brands who are not paying me to do so but [laughs]…
I like M&Ms.
So next season we’ll be seeing Father Gabriel eating some M&M’s…
I would love to see that! I’d be all over that. I’d be covered in all this gore and blood so you’d wonder what he had to do to get them.
What are you able to tell us about season 10?
Filming for the next season begins in May and I have no idea what will be happening…It’s under lock and key, in a box under a floor. Under a herd of Walkers [laughs].
There’s been talk from AMC about spin-off movies where we could see the return of Rick Grimes – what is your involvement in this project?
I would like to be in the spin-off movies but no one has come to me specifically about them.
I’ve been trying to work out how Father Gabriel would fit into that. Does he know something about where Rick is and he’s not sharing it with the rest of the community?
I don’t know what Scott Gimple has in mind, I am sure it will be tricky.
We are in a weird time where a lot of shows are being revived or rebooted in some way. What are your thoughts on anything like that happening with The Wire?
I don’t think it’s something that could happen. Only because I remember reading something David Simon said where he didn’t want to repeat himself. And it’s one of the reasons why the show went off air when it did.
He didn’t want to tell the same story again. And he figured it got right to the point where the story started to repeat itself when a new line of characters doing the same thing. I think that’s where he wanted it to end.
I do see the influence of The Wire on many different TV shows today.
Do you have anything as a memento from the show?
I do! Yes. I have the certificate that Sgt Carver got when he became a lieutenant. I have that framed hanging up on my wall in my bedroom at home.
The Walking Dead concludes on Monday 1st April at 9pm on FOX