According to a new TV Guide interview with The Walking Dead actor David Morrissey (embedded below), his character–the villainous Governor–will come to the TV series at an earlier point in his journey than he did in the comic books, leaving him a little bit less unambiguously evil than he was when Rick Grimes’s band of survivors first encountered him in the Image Comics/Skybound series from Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard.
“In the comics, he has arrived at his psychological limit, is quite sadistic and is fully formed,” said Morrissey. “In the show, we’re meeting him much earlier in his journey, so there are more colors for me to play with.”
In a major shift from the comic book source material, Morrissey also told TV Guide that his character will connect with one of Rick’s band of survivors and may even pursue her romantically.
“They have an attraction for each other, but whether that attraction is manifested into anything else is very much a wait-and-see,” said Morrissey. “She’s an intelligent, strong woman and could be a very valuable member of this community.”
That could created an interesting side-story, given that most comic book fans have gone into this season thinking that they had a pretty clear road map of where certain major events would occur.
Of course, The Governor’s backstory has turned out to be fertile ground for Kirkman in recent years; along with co-writer Jay Bonansinga, he’s written two novels and announced a third based on the journey that a relatively decent man took to becoming the brutal, unstable Governor of Woodbury. The second, The Road to Woodbury, was just released earlier this month.