“The Walking Dead” executive producer Angela Kang is ready to answer some questions after Sunday night’s shocking midseason finale.
Fans especially have a lot of questions about Maggie (Lauren Cohan) and Negan’s (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) complicated relationship. Kang recently sat down with Deadline in order to tease a few more details about their long-awaited spin-off series.
Angela Kang Talks Negan’s Desire To ‘Try To Prove Himself’
Now that “The Walking Dead” has finished filming, fans are watching the final episodes of the series that started it all. By the time the episode “Acts of God” rolls around, fans are witnessing the relationship between Maggie and Negan began to change. However, Kang revealed that their story wasn’t set up with a spin-off in mind.
Kang explained that “we were arcing out this story for a long time before there was any spinoff in the works. So, we’ve not been coordinating our story so much with the spinoff. They’re going off of where we end these two, but we definitely felt like there was a desire on Negan’s part to try to prove himself.”
She added, “I’ll say that it’s notable that he has not yet fully apologized, but this is a guy who I think tries to show his sense of, I don’t know, guilt or whatever and that there isn’t completely closure.”
Kang also called Maggie a “very pragmatic leader” and said that she “definitely can look at what [Neegan] has done in the current time and gone, all right, he has done everything he can to help my child, and that doesn’t count for nothing.”
“So, I think, for us, it’s just part of their roller coaster or a journey that they’re on. It still continues,” Kang added. “Not all is completely resolved between them, but we definitely love writing for this pair. As played by Lauren and Jeffrey, they’re just really good together.”
Angela King Opens Up About Negan’s New, Pregnant Wife Annie Smith
Kang also dished on Medina Senghore and her character of Annie Smith, who plays Negan’s new and pregnant wife. Kang says that their interactions might be “softening” Maggie a little bit towards a man she once despised.
“I think a big part of Maggie sort of softening even a little towards Negan is that she meets Annie and has this immediate sense that this person is a good person that she likes and can trust, that she is on the level,” Kang explained. “The fact that she has chosen Negan and vice versa says something, and so, I think that Annie really is key to this entire thing, and I think, even for young Hershel, he has no forgiveness for Negan yet.”
“I mean, this is the guy that killed his father, and he’s just finding this out,” she added. “However, I think even Hershel, like, has a different sense towards Annie. He can tell that her heart is a good heart.”
“You know, Maggie’s a person who, at her core, wants to trust people and have optimism and hope that there can be friendship and you know, that relationships can be formed,” Kang continued. “It’s actually counter to what she wants to be naturally, to push against people hard and to leave them out and to leave them behind. She’s made a lot of choices like that recently, and that’s something that she’s struggling with, and so I think things are turned a little bit upside down when she comes in the presence of Annie.”
Angela Kang Opens Up About The Different ‘Tone’ Of The Midseason Finale
Kang also explained how this midseason finale might have felt different from the ones in the past. “It’s taking different tones,” she explained. “A 24-episode season definitely has a different rhythm for us. We’ve got to amortize the whole season correctly, but we’ve also got these sort of mid-points that are also large.”
She continued, “You know, some of the episodes have to be a little more contained, and in this case, we just decided we’ve done a lot of these big episodes where a ton of people are in them, and we just wanted to mix that up.”
“Sometimes we do that,” she admitted. “Like, this isn’t the only time we’ve done a midseason or a finale or whatever you call it that has a more focused narrative. We thought of episodes 16 and 17 as two sides of the coin. So, we’re kind of really following one part of the storyline here, and then the start of 11C, episode 17 picks up a flip side.”
She admitted, “So, I know that there are some people who are not going to be satisfied that their particular favorites aren’t as featured here, but maybe they’ll get that satisfaction in the next episode, hopefully.”
“I think, in this case, we took the path that the Leah death was our big death, because sometimes our death is a villain death,” she concluded. “I think, there’s a lot of expectations, and we also like to sometimes subvert those expectations.”