Q: After last season’s finale, what were you hoping for your character this season?
A: I was mostly just hoping to see how all the characters fared from that and came out on the other side. How we were coping with whether or not the Governor was still a threat. What I was most looking forward to, which has really materialized, is a lot more character study, and we’ve definitely come into that this season.
Q: What did you know about Maggie’s story arc going into this season?
A: I knew that we would have the possibility of a pregnancy and I knew that Maggie’s M.O. this year would be, “Live, don’t just survive.” There’s apprehension about whether or not she could have a baby, but I think she definitely would. Even in today’s society, I don’t think anybody is ever ready for a baby — but that doesn’t make it the wrong choice when you have it.
Q: We you pleased that Maggie and Glenn’s relationship is back to a better place this season?
A: Yeah, definitely. I think it’s important to see people crack and then see which way they go. If something goes bad and you come back from it, then it’s like OK, you really mean it. And it’s been good to portray that kind of relationship and explore that kind of hope in this world.
Q: I’m told you have a habit of bringing your dog on-set a lot. How does he react to the sight of walkers?
A: He actually doesn’t mind the walkers too much. It’s funny, if you have any alcohol or spray on your clothes, it’s kind of salty and he likes to lick it. So he actually likes the walkers because they are covered in a bunch of different stuff. I brought him down to the set one day, and on the other side of the stage they were doing an explosion. He ran all the way through the set, through the offices, and pushed the doors open — and he’s small, like 35 lbs — and ran straight back to our trailer. That’s like a half-mile! I felt so bad — I was like I’m never bringing him near here again. So now, I always bring him to one side of the camp, and I leave classical music on in the trailer and I put happy doggy cartoons on the TV and I hire a lady to sing to him… I’m kidding.
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Q: After three seasons of playing Maggie, have you taken on any aspects of your character?
A: She’s kind of chilled me out. Maggie’s Southern influence, being here and I think being a little easier on myself. She goes through a lot of strife, and I think that she comes from a really brave, earnest place. But it’s really been the show overall that’s kind of made me a lot more present. Partly because we can’t know what’s coming in the future. And then, of course, picking up some weapons skills and horse riding skills. I can run with two machine guns now.
Q: Maggie and Glenn have the best room at the prison — the guard tower. What’s the best place you’ve ever spent the night?
A: That’s a good question! When I was a teenager, we used to go to North Carolina with my family, and we’d all pile into like a beach house. We’d rent like two or three next to each other, because I have a humungous family. There would be like thirty of us and you’d just sleep wherever. I always think family get-togethers when everybody just sort of crashes out are pretty much the best. If it’s more than a few days it gets hard, but for just a few days, it’s the most amazing thing ever.