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Danai Gurira on That Walking Dead Episode’s ‘Uncanny’ Parallels to Real Life

2016 Theatre Communications Group Gala
Photo: Rob Kim/Getty Images

If you caught The Walking Dead’s latest episode, you may have felt a little more queasy than usual, given the current state of the country. The Alexandrians are now being mercilessly led by a leader who makes crass comments about women, is in with the gun lobby, and generally isn’t the nicest guy. In one scene, Rick and Father Gabe talk about how to get through the day and forge on. “Then we’ll find a way to go forward,” Father Gabe says. “To beat this.” To which Rick responds, “There is no beating this.”

Sound familiar? At the Theatre Communications Group annual gala at the Edison Ballroom last night, one of the honorees, Danai Gurira, who plays Michonne on the show, talked about how the scene evoked the current mood in America.

“I don’t think about things I don’t seek to experience,” she said, meaning that she wasn’t expecting the scene to resonate with her on a personal level when they filmed it in early June. “But there was a deep parallel. We weren’t thinking about November then, but the fact that it aired yesterday — it’s uncanny.”

As for the rest of the season, “It’s going to continue to be a very, very visceral and heartfelt ride with all of these various people dealing with transformation and change and figuring out how to get through it,” Gurira said. “We never had any idea it would be, but it’s something powerfully timely about what story we’re telling and the moment the country’s in.”

Danai Gurira on TWD Parallels to Real Life