On Friday, Fear the Walking Dead took over Hall H to continue a crowded day in Hall H. The cast and crew assembled on stage to preview the upcoming batch of episodes which will round out the show's third season beginning on September 10.
Moderator Chris Hardwick took the stage to start the panel, paying tribute to The Walking Dead's John Bernecker. "I think it's important to say it's a horrible thing that happened. There's not a silver lining that I can see."
"I'm gonna be moderating Fear and then the cast and producers had talked about the best way..." Hardwick begins. "They wanted to come and be here for the fans and they felt it was necessary to run the panel themselves and I 100% agree..."
Dave Erickson, Robert Kirkman, David Alpert, Gale Anne Hurd, and Greg Nicotero take the stage.
The panel starts with Erickson describing the new arc and opportunities introduced by Michael Greyeyes' Walker character.
"The first season we had to iron out some rough edges," Erickson said before rattling off the exotic new locations. "In terms of story and narrative drive it gave us so many things that were exciting to me."
"As we see in the back half of the season, we get a better sense of this border community."
Hardwick asks Hurd about the cosmonaut in the midseason 3 finale.
"Our group has been isolated," Hurd said. "In the third season, who is going to know what's going on in the world better than someone who is circling the globe to see if life exists somewhere?"
"It's a sobering moment. Not only has Strand lost Abigail and Abigail the boat but now he alos realizes there is no place they can go to where life is normal. I think it means that they've come to the realization that they're gonna have to forge their own community and rebuild in a way that I don't think they ever imagined."
Hardwick calls Daniel Salazar's episode one of the best episodes of television he's ever seen and asks if there is a connection between the two shows.
"The Dixon family is somewhat splintered in my mind, so it's entirely possible that there is a connection out there," Kirkman said. "I'm trying to get as many inaccurate articles on the Internet as possible."
"It's really a question of timeline because Walking Dead Season 8 is so far ahead in the timeline compared to Fear the Walking Dead Season 3 but Daryl Dixon is going to find a magical telephone in Season 8 and call back to Madison...Just think about what the audience is gonna think when Daryl Dixon pulls out that magical telephone!"
"I think it's something that we would love to try and work out," Kirkman said of a crossover, more seriously. "It's something that we would love to try and do at some point eventually."
Nicotero begins talking about the walkers in Fear's world. "You always gotta feel their presence," Nicotero said before paying a "tremendous debt of gratitude" to zombie legend George Romero. He goes on to show concept art of how the crew ripped a character through a wall.
The next eight episodes will be "bolder, bloodier, and more zombie," than ever before according to Erickson.
The Season 3B trailer plays for the first time.
Kim Dickens, Colman Domingo, Frank Dillane, Alycia Debnam Carey, Sam Underwood, Daniel Sharman, Dayton Callie, Mercedes Mason, and Michael Greyeyes take the stage.
Dickens begins by talking about Madison's past the big reveal she made to her kids, saying she has been carrying guilt and has opened a new world going forward.
"We talked a lot about that last moment of Strand, when he's walking off, as the Abigail's in flames and where he's going next. We made a choice to give him a glint and a smile. He's ready to rebuild again," Domingo said. "He's been through devastating circumstances, probably, since a child."
"As you see in the teaser, first of all, he's got a big ole beard now and he's grounded in a different way. Things have a different meaning for him now."
"I don't really know what Nick thinks," Dillane said.
"I think Frank has actually played this beautifully. It's a very challenging position Nick ends up in by the end of the season," Erickson said. "He's getting close to things that are more violent than he's accustomed to and one of those things is his mom, strangely."
Debnam-Carey says that learning the truth about the Trimbol family's death is a "real divider."
"Madison's all about family and it's interesting to see how she's gathered another extended family with the Ottos. Alicia's been with her in taking over the ranch to a certain extent or going along with it but once this happens, it's a real fracture. I think it's nice to see Alicia realize what's too far."
As for the relationship with Jake, "I think this is a nice moment to show this is actually a young person trying to just be normal and fill in some of the gaps that she missed out on through college and her youth and having to grow up too fast in this apocalypse. It doesn't have to be about her falling in love with someone or wanting to be with someone...It doesn't have to be that relationship and I think that's what's nice about it. Alicia goes for it."
Underwood chimes in to say the show reveals that "women don't need men to survive." He goes on to discuss Jake and says he serves as a reminder that the world is "s--- right now" but violence is not always the only option.
"What I think they do a really beautiful job with is make him a human being and therefore his actions and his things, as we'll see later in the season as well, they are based in a real understanding that he has his own upbringing and his own place," Sharman said of Troy.
Callie says he'll miss being a "loving, caring, understanding father," without playing Troy Otto, getting a good laugh from the crowd.
Mercedes Mason promises a more "ballsy" version of Ofelia coming. "She's finally become a bit of a bad-ass. I can't wait for her to meet up with Daniel Salazar and the two of them to go on a killing duo."
Greyeyes talks about Walker. "I love playing Walker. I'm so excited to be on the show. I was a huge fan of TWD and this show before I came on. When I had the chance to audition, I first read the material and thought this guy is so smart," he said. "As somebody who is really interested in represenation...I was delighted to be able to play a character who was vigorous and a leader and intelligent and articulate and brutal and strategic. Within two full episodes, he's turned the entire Ranch inside out."
Daniel Salazar actor Ruben Blades sent a message for fans.
"Hi, friends in Hall H! Hope you clapped. That's the big hal. That's The Walking Dead hall, Game of Thrones hall," "I'm sorry I can't be with you because this is not my day job. I'm a musician. I'm n tour now."
"I'm a comic book collector," Blades said. "I've been going to Comic Con forever...I'm missing you!...Thank you for receiving Salazar. Daniel is back. I'm very happy to be back."
Audience questions begin.
Which is scarier - TWD or FearTWD?
"In some respects, I think Walking Dead is scarier, especially now because they're so much deeper into it," Erickson said. "I think right now, we're into it, and there's a certain raw fear in the fact that it's relatively new...there's something in The Walking Dead that just in terms of pure fear, just hits me more strongly."
Will we see infected Travis?
"No, for a number of reasons," Erickson said. "Cliff's now a little bit busy working with Mr. Cameron."
Do they have zombie nightmares?
"I do, yeah," Dillane said. "Zombies have started to infect my dreams."
"I've had a few. I've definitely had a few. I've had some apocalyptic dreams," Dickens said.
Fear the Walking Dead movie?
"More of Kirkman question," Erickson said.
"I think we're available, though," Dickens joked.
"Never say never," Erickson said.
MORE WALKING DEAD: FTWD/TWD Crossover Theory Finally Addresssed / The Walking Dead Season 8 Premiere Date Revealed / The Walking Dead Season 8 Key Art Released / Mercedes Mason On Ofelia's Big FTWD Twist / The Walking Dead's Musical Score Being Released / Why Morgan Is The Next Season 1 Character To Die
Fear the Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9 pm ET on AMC. The Walking Dead will return for its eighth season in October with a trailer coming in July at San Diego Comic Con. For complete coverage and insider info all season long, follow @BrandonDavisBD on Twitter.