Walking Dead's Governor explains the reason behind that shocking murder

Contributed by
Nov 25, 2013

The last two episodes of The Walking Dead have been a major change of pace, as we caught up with the Governor (David Morrissey) and his post-Woodbury life. Not surprisingly, things got pretty dark. So what led to that shocking murder?

Spoilers ahead for last night’s Walking Dead!

As we saw last night, the Governor took out his old pal Martinez with a golf club to the head — then tossed him into a pit full of zombies. The reason? Well, that’s where it gets complicated. Judging by a recent chat with Entertainment Weekly, Morrissey has gotten deep into the Governor’s psyche — and he’s here to explain why the Governor is back to his old tricks.

We’ve been led to believe the Governor is a changed man in the wake of Woodbury, now serving as a surrogate father to a family that helped keep him from going (back) off the deep end. But it turns out that newfound love is exactly why he had to kill. Basically: After Martinez admitted he wasn't sure he could keep the camp secure, the Governor knew he had to take over and do it himself, to protect those he loves.

Here’s an excerpt:

“Well, the thing about him is I think he’s a man that we see struggling to stay away from that awful responsibility of leadership. He doesn’t want that. He wants to be led. He wants to protect the people he loves. And he’ll do anything he can to protect them, even be subservient if that’s what is needed. He’s in that community with Martinez and I think he just wants to be a quiet civilian, really. But he sees weak leadership around him. He sees the people there who say, ‘We’ll protect you,’ and they’re not able to protect them. They’re not able to protect the people he loves. So he’s forced to take responsibility the only way he knows how and with the thing that has served him in the past, and that is being ruthlessly vigilant when it comes to his duty in leadership and protection.

Nobody else is going to do it. He’s got to step up. He’s got natural leadership qualities so he has to step up and do it. And he doesn’t want to do it, and what we love about him and what we admire about him is his fight before he takes up the reins. He tries to get out. He says to Lilly, ‘This place isn’t going to be safe anymore. It’s not safe. Things are going to be bad here.’ And what he means is things are going to be bad with him. He can feel that dark side rising inside of himself and he’s trying to get away from it. And he can’t get away from it. He tries and he hits this wall of zombies and he knows that he’s got to go back and face that camp and face those people and take the reins of leadership.

I think Martinez makes the mistake of admitting weakness. He says to the Governor, ‘I’m not sure I can keep this place safe.’ Had he turned around to the Governor on that day where he was playing golf and said, ‘There is no way this camp is not going to be safe. I’m going to make it safe. I’m going to do everything I can to make it safe,’ then the Governor is going to say, ‘Great, I’ll follow you.’ But as soon as the man admits weakness, then the Governor is going to take control. And the Governor is killing him and screaming, ‘I don’t want it!’ What he doesn’t want is the responsibility. He doesn’t want the responsibility he is forced to take because of this man’s weakness. That’s very important. He’s putting a crown on his head that he doesn’t want. But nobody else but him is worthy of wearing it.”

In a weird way, it makes sense. Going all the way back to the Woodbury days, he was mostly motivated to protect his family, and it was the death (and subsequent zombie death) of his daughter that drove him to full-on insanity. What do you think? Is this just the same thing all over again for the Governor?

(Via Entertainment Weekly)

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