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  • Writer's pictureAaron Fonseca

'An Emotional Decision': TWD: The Ones Who Live Stars Address Series Premiere Shocker

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Sunday night marked the premiere of The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live, and it came with a major comic book moment finally getting brought to life on-screen.

In the original Walking Dead comic books, Andrew Lincoln's Rick Grimes character gets his hand chopped off by the Governor (played in the show by David Morrissey) fairly early into the story. The TV series adaptation came with many significant changes from the comics, however, and among them was Rick keeping his hand. With the character's return in The Ones Who Live, Rick finally lost his hand in the live-action TWD universe, though it needed to be done in a different way, given how the Governor has long been dead.

In The Ones Who Live, Rick is revealed to have been forced into serving as a soldier for the Civic Republic Military. He has a tracking device on his hand to prevent his escape, but desperate to flee and get back to Michonne, Rick winds up severing his own hand himself, cauterizing the wound with the help of a flaming zombie. Like the comic books, Rick has also been given a prosthetic hand. Speaking about finally realizing the scene in live-action, Rick Grimes actor Andrew Lincoln said how thrilled he was about it, as it was something he wante to make happen back in the original series.

“I’ve been banging on about this for years... I’ve been trying to get my hand chopped off!” Lincoln told THR. "This is more than just a nod. It’s honoring the story. It’s what Kirkman did. It’s the nature of the world that we’re inhabiting in this. These people are not superheroes. They are people in extreme situations, doing horrendous things — sometimes brilliant but sometimes horrific things — in order to stay alive and keep those around them alive. So I was very keen to do this, and to hopefully have a very shocking first act that makes people sit back and think, ‘Oh, we’re in for a bit of a ride here. This is different. There’s real jeopardy here.'”

Danai Gurira Was All For Rick Losing His Hand 

Andrew Lincoln was happy to do the scene, though he also admitted that he was concerned that it might not turn out well on-screen. However, co-star Danai Gurira had assuaged all doubts he'd had when he spoke with her about the scene. Gurira pointed out how Rick has spent years away from Michonne at this point, and this was a way of demonstrating just how much he is eager to reunite with his family.

“This is Rick Grimes,” Gurira said. “He’s been gone for eight or nine years. We know him to be a man who would do anything, everything, to get back to his family. This is actually the most clear, character-specific justification for why he hasn’t done it yet. It really connects the audience back to Rick. This is what he would do to get back to Michonne. This is what he would do to get back to his family.”

Lincoln added, "It’s so character-driven. It justifies the time apart. It’s an emotional decision. It’s not about [shock], it’s about heart and trying to return.”

"Forgive me, Mr. Kirkman,” Gurira would also chime in. “But I actually think this was better than the comic books!

The series premiere of The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live is streaming on AMC+.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter

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