The Walking Dead is back on screen with a special bonus of six episodes and star Melissa McBride says they are very different.
Dubbed 10C (for Covid), these episodes are the conclusion to the zombie dramas 10th season, which has screened in three parts between October 2019 and now.
Melissa McBride as Carol in The Walking Dead.
McBride has played Carol Peletier since the shows debut in 2010.
Its an extension of season 10 that will take us into season 11, she says.
These are episodes that were written with the Covid protocols in mind so theyre smaller in scale and smaller in the cast size.
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The Walking Dead, which is based on a comic-book series of the same name, follows survivors of a zombie apocalypse trying to stay alive under near-constant threat of attacks from the undead.
They also repeatedly come under threat from other living survivors who have formed groups and communities with their own sets of laws and morals.
The bonus episodes pick up from just after Daryl Dixon (Norman Reedus), Carol and the rest of the Hilltop survivors faced off against the formidable Whisperers.
Were going to find out where everybody is and how they are dealing with that aftermath, McBride reveals.
Maggie (Lauren Cohan) is back so we will be finding out what shes been up to, what brought her back and then, for Carol, shes wanting to mend her relationship with Daryl and tie up some loose ends.
In a flashback this season, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, who plays Negan (pictured with Melissa McBride, above), will be screening with his real-life wife Hilarie Burton Morgan who debuts as Negans dead wife Lucille.
Casting announcements last year also confirmed the extended season will reveal the hidden back story behind one of The Walking Deads most notable villains, Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan).
Morgans actress wife, Hilarie Burton Morgan (One Tree Hill, Lethal Weapon), will make her debut as the ruthless characters dead wife Lucille.
Meanwhile, the cast is filming the series 11th and final season. The producers have announced the show will end after the coming 24-episode season that will begin screening this year and conclude in 2022.
While it is the end of The Walking Dead, it is not the end of the road for Carol Peletier.
McBride and co-star Reedus are set to reprise their characters in an as-yet-unnamed spin-off.
McBride says it is a bittersweet time for the ensemble cast which has bonded as a family.
This is all weve known for the last 10 years. We lose people but its always been this big ensemble of wonderful people and to say goodbye to that is hard and, personally, I dont want to think about it at the moment, she says.
I want to get through the next 24 episodes or however many and just be present in that and enjoy the company of these people while they are here.
Norman Reedus (Daryl) and Melissa McBride (Carol) are set to reprise their characters in an as-yet-unnamed spin-off.
I dont really know what to look forward to with the spin-off other than that Im excited that Im going to be working with Norman.
This has been such a massive part of my life for the last 10, 11 years. Its very difficult but theres so much to be proud of and so much to be grateful for.
A regular on television in the 90s, McBride was working as a casting director when she was offered the part of Carol, a housewife who was broken by years of domestic abuse.
As the show has progressed, she has become a skilled, resourceful fighter capable of making difficult and sometimes wrong decisions. She and Reedus are the only two cast members who have appeared in all 115 episodes.
The zombie drama at times one of the most-watched television series in the world has far exceeded any expectations McBride had when she was cast.
Its been really amazing, she says. I think the thing that I love most about playing this character is that the fans understand her in a bittersweet way.
I think she is an inspiration to a lot of people and she certainly is to me and Im really grateful that the writers took her in such an inspiring direction.
I certainly never would have thought at that time that I would be here 10 years later seeing it all the way to a spin-off series. Never.
The Walking Dead, TVNZ 2, Monday, March 2
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