At the end of the mid-season finale of ‘The Walking Dead’ Season 6, Alexandria leader Deanna goes out with a warriors yell. There are some people that are still on the fence about whether she actually dies right then or could be hiding in a closet. In any case she had been bitten by a zombie, so there wasn’t much time left anyway. Deanna went out as a hero, protecting her Alexandria, by taking as many zombies as she could with her, and she wouldn’t want it any other way. (With the exception of having not getting bitten in the first place!) Actress Tovah Feldshuh who plays Deanna on the show is a smart and feisty lady in person, who has a lot of great insight into our favorite zombie TV show.
Tovah was a guest at Walker Stalker Con NY/NJ and at her panel gave us a real look at Deanna and what her character meant to the show, and what the show meant to Tovah. At one point she laughed and mimicked asking the producers “Who do I have to sleep with to get a flashback?” Her stories were funny and on point, and the audience at Walker Stalker Con loved her. Different versions of the question were asked, but the main thing most people were wondering was whether Rick is going to have what it takes to run Alexandria without Deanna. “Deanna offered Rick respite, a nap, she offered him babysitting, schools for Carl, peace for Judith, she offered him a shower for God’s sake!” Tovah stated. “Rick is going to have to have what it takes or flank himself with Michonne who hopefully will help him, now that Maggie, who was originally to be my legacy, is pregnant.”
Deanna being gone, the apocalypse catching up with them and the walls crashing down will make Alexandria a very different and unsafe place. Deanna’s task was being the far-reaching visionary brains of the organization. Her dream was to get civilization back on track. Why was civilization so important to her character as opposed to survival skills? “Remember that we had two years of no walkers, through the synchronicity of luck, time and circumstance we ended up in Alexandria. The name which is for the great Alexandria in Egypt, where the greatest library existed in the Ancient World.” she shared. “We went there because it was evacuated, the walkers thought there was no live blood in it for them. We had no one in the watch tower, we were busy reading Dostoevsky, babysitting, gardening, and building a wall, just in case anything bad would happen. Deanna didn’t have the the experience that it had to be survival above all, because she was able to have culture, due process of law, orderliness, clean clothes. Maybe they would have eventually run out of supplies, but they were able to survive without any problems for two full years and then she quickly had a completely different learning curve as survival skills became important when the fate of Alexandria unraveled around them.”
Being originally from a stage background, this was not the first time Tovah has been in a TV show. You may remember her on ‘Law and Order’. But being on ‘The Walking Dead’ has been an extra special time for this seasoned actress. She has never experienced anything like it and believes that every actor involved in ‘The Walking Dead’ feels it is the best and luckiest job they’ve ever gotten in their lives on a TV series. “I’m recognized in foreign countries,” she laughed. “I was just in Thailand and I was walking to the sea and I hear ‘Deanna, Deanna!’ In northern Thailand, I couldn’t believe it, they recognized me from my ass! I was so thrilled! I love this, and I don’t take one day of this for-granted, it’s such a wonderful experience.”
When asked what her favorite part of her time on ‘The Walking Dead’ was, her answer was being on the set. “There’s a lot of love on the set. I lived in a hotel, had room service, rode my bike, swam a 1/2 mile a day and did my push-ups before each take. I never knew that would be such a thing, who knew, I do it to quiet my mind.” she said. Tovah showed off her famous push-ups originally on ‘The Talking Dead’ and had a competition (which she won) with the audience members at the Walker Stalker Con panel. “I loved my life on set in Georgia and that’s because of Andy Lincoln and Scott Gimple, the love trickled down the whole community.”
Deanna was loved and will be missed. But what is in store for the second half of Season 6? We saw the trailer where the dreaded character Negan is unveiled. But trailers don’t always show us the whole story. Will Alexandria survive? Who will we lose right off the bat? Who will win the battle between Carol and Morgan? Executive Producer Scott Gimple has always been honest about trailers. “We sometimes play with the truth in trailers, but it’s just to maintain the experience for everybody.” Scott revealed at Comic Con. “Rick faces challenges with the way he does things and including the people in how he does things. Rick has to deal with the fact that things went down with Pete, and all the people that followed him into the bowels of hell are looking at him differently.” Well Rick isn’t the only one with problems at the end of the last episode. If you didn’t see the trailer at the end of the mid-season finale check out the “Prologue to the Next Chapter of The Walking Dead” on AMC.com.
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