Steven Ogg joined the cast of ‘The Walking Dead’ last season (the show’s seventh) as Negan’s right hand, Simon and has been promoted to series regular for the upcoming eighth. Unlike, Dwight (Austin Amelio), whose loyalties seem to shift from one scene to the next, Simon takes to Negan’s brutal methods like a duck to water.
While Simon is obviously a bad guy on the show, that doesn’t mean he’s treated that way off-camera. If you watch ‘Talking Dead’, you realize that the actors leave their characters on the set and off-set, they’re one big happy family.
Ogg discussed joining the team, saying:
“Everyone is so welcoming and so wonderful. They’re all ridiculously close off the set that they just make you feel completely welcome and it was such a safe environment that you immediately feel like, all right, you’re excited. Let’s get down to it, like ‘What do we get to play today?’
“They make it feel, and this extends throughout, really, everyone — production, and cast — there’s no feeling like you’re lesser than. Andrew [Lincoln] is number one on the call sheet, and he is number one and he sets the tone, and it just bleeds over to everyone. That everyone is just so great and there’s no, you’re just this person, or your number 300 on the call sheet, it doesn’t matter. Everyone is in this together, and you feel it. You feel the team, you feel the love, you feel the support and the trust, and I think it’s what really makes it special. I think it reflects on the show, too.”
Unfortunately, this is ‘The Walking Dead’, he’s talking about and team is about to shrink… a lot.
Season Eight is based on the comic book storyline ‘All Out War’ and you can’t have a war without casualties. The walkers may have decimated most of humanity, but most of the really significant deaths on the show were human-inflicted.
Does the ‘All Out War’ result in the deaths of some of the core cast?
“Yeah, I mean s—, it’s like whenever people say, ‘Are you going to die? Or do you know yet?’ Yeah, everyone’s going to die at some point, right? They all die… Yeah, let’s thin the herd, man, let’s thin the herd.”
For a show built around death, particularly the deaths of focal characters, the viewers seem awful squeamish about that. It’s nice to see a cast member level with us and state that “everyone’s going to die at some point.”
The question is, will Simon’s death come sooner or later? Will Ogg enjoy the status of being a series regular for just this one? Unfortunately, there’s no way to tell. His character was created especially for the show. He doesn’t exist in the comics, so there’s no telling what the creative team will do with him. In fact, the show more times than not, alters the events from the comics, particularly the deaths, making it almost impossible to predict even if you have read the books.
What do you think about Simon? Would you like to see more of him in the coming 16 episodes?
‘The Walking Dead’ S8 premieres on October 22, 2017. In the meantime, S7 is available on DVD and Blu-Ray now.