Fear The Walking Dead keeps us guessing on AMC. Meanwhile, actors from the show answered many fan questions in the Fear The Walking Dead panel at Walker Stalker Nashville.
Panels are some of my favorite offerings at Walker Stalker conventions. First of all, a panel is a great time to rest your feet and sit down for a spell. You can also capture some great photos of celebrity guests on stage. Cast members usually offer some funny stories and cool insights into their characters as well as stories from behind the scenes of our favorite shows.
The Fear The Walking Dead panel in Nashville most definitely did not disappoint. The show was very well represented with six different cast members past and present. Kim Dickens (Madison Clark), Colman Domingo (Victor Strand), Danay Garcia (Luciana), Jenna Elfman (Naomi/Laura), Daniel Sharman (Troy Otto) and Kevin Zegers (Mel, leader of the Vultures) were all on hand to answer fan questions. The panel was moderated by Jason Cabassi of The Walking Dead ‘Cast.
Here are some of the highlights from a great panel.
Keeping an ‘eye’ on Daniel and Kim
Kim Dickens and Daniel Sharman had some interesting stories to share about the scene where Madison digs a spoon underneath Troy’s eyeball. It is a gruesome scene and the prosthetic eye surely added to the effect.
When asked if it was uncomfortable, Kim Dickens joked that it was “completely comfortable for me”. Daniel told the audience that “Kim Dickens just enjoyed [that scene] way too much”. Dickens even added that the prosthetic eyeball moved around.
Later, when asked if anyone had saved items from the set, Daniel said he kept the spoon from the eyeball scene. I am not sure if he was joking about taking it, but I do hope he was joking when he says to Kim Dickens, “I have breakfast with it every morning, Kim”.
P.S. Colman Domingo really does have a piece of The Abigail (the yacht from season 2).
Getting into Troy’s head
Everyone has theories about the status of Troy Otto’s mental health during the series. Jason Cabassi took the opportunity to ask the actor himself how he would describe Troy.
First, Kim chimes in “He’s in love with Madison.” Daniel begrudgingly agrees. Then he goes on to share some very interesting thoughts about Troy.
Daniel described how Troy had never really experienced much “human contact” in the world prior to the zombie apocalypse. I suspect his life on the ranch was a bit isolating. Daniel explained that when faced with all the human interactions in the new world, Troy was not very well-equipped. All of these interactions were new to him and he did not really know how to respond.
Daniel described Troy as “someone who had not been integrated into society learning how those things work”. He says “his brain is just taking on so much information”.
It is certainly an interesting explanation for Troy’s lack of social skills.
A new page
Clearly, Fear The Walking Dead has undergone many changes this year with a time jump, new characters, new showrunner, and even new threats. Fans inquired about some of these changes.
Colman and Danay talked about welcoming new cast members by going out to dinner. They talked about helping them settle in to life in Austin while filming.
In regard to Lennie James joining the show, Colman described him as “a pro”, “good to work with” and “a good add for the show”. He also made a point to remind us that the viewers know more about Morgan than the other characters do on Fear The Walking Dead.
Colman also described the nuances of adjusting to new writers and directors. He gave an example of how at one point the script seemed to have Strand being a little too “obvious” about his feelings. So he talked to the writers to clarify what they were going for. Colman shared, “It’s a dance with the writers’ room and the director as well.”
Jenna Elfman confirmed that she was given Naomi’s whole back story when she was offered the role. She values that prior knowledge saying, “As an actor I was able to choose where I revealed certain emotions, certain looks to certain characters at certain times, to just subliminally tell the story.”
When asked which name we should use to refer to her character, she was a bit coy and told fans to “keep watching”. Spoiler alert: If you have watched the most recent episode of Fear The Walking Dead, you know that mystery continues to surround her character.
Jenna also had a funny story to share about her mom inquiring about the water park scene. Her mother talked about the mildew on the slides and how slippery it must have been for her. Jenna peeled back the curtain of TV magic telling her, “Mom, it was green paint. I had to act slippery.”
The panelists had so many stories to share. Now I have so many more questions having seen two more episodes of Fear The Walking Dead since the Nashville discussion. If only we could have a panel each week!
The audio for the full panel can be found here on The Walking Dead ‘Cast.
Thank you to Walker Stalker Con for coordinating such a great event and bringing so many cast members together for an insightful discussion.