The Walking Dead season 8 episode 3 put another victim on the list tonight, and this was one many saw coming. While Jordan Woods-Robinson had a pretty great journey over the years as Eric, it was clear this season that we were getting near the end of the road. He had a great love story with Aaron, after all, and typically if you’re romantically intertwined with someone on this show it means that either you or your partner are going to die. Just look at Glenn … and by the way, we’re insanely terrified for Michonne at the moment with this in mind. (Judging from those Old Man Rick sequences we’re pretty confident that she at least makes it for a while.)
Eric became a walker in tonight’s episode, and so it’s clear that his journey on the show is over. So, what was it like for him saying goodbye? CarterMatt has always been fascinated with this process given that it’s very different depending on the show. Woods-Robinson did his part to describe what some of the process was like for him in a new postmortem with Entertainment Weekly:
“I was fortunate enough to receive a very heartfelt and intimate call from [showrunner Scott M. Gimple], and we talked for about 45 minutes. He’s like, ‘Unfortunately, we have come to the part of the story where Eric is going to be leaving us. And we put a lot of thought into it and this is how we want to do it.’ He talked to me for a long time and you get the sense when you talk to Scott or anyone else that is a creative on the show that every decision they have is a tough one, and every decision they make is to tell a great story.”
Ultimately, he did have a longer role on the show than some and he had a chance to have a pretty good send-off. He didn’t have scenes with too many other characters, but we know that the entire Walking Dead family is just that. They bond in a way that few other shows do, in part because they spend so much time separate from the remainder of the TV industry. This is what comes from filming in Atlanta under some of those conditions.
One of the good things about the timing of this exit for Woods-Robinson is that he gets to re-enter the TV world at a time where there should be a lot of different roles available for him. Not only are there going to be some guest-starring roles likely available coming up, but there’s also the potential for him to be able to do something in pilot season.
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