‘The Walking Dead’s Scott Gimple on “Very Special” Richonne Relationship

The Walking Dead Season Nine deepens the loving relationship between Alexandria leaders Rick (Andrew Lincoln) and Michonne (Danai Gurira), a coupling executive producer and former showrunner Scott Gimple calls “very special.”

Following the turmoil brought on by the extended conflict with former enemies the Saviors, “[their connection is deeper now,” Gimple told TV Line. “They went through a remarkably intense thing together. She was there for him in so many different ways, and the things she ultimately led him to do were so important.”

Season Nine finds ‘Richonne,’ as the fan-favorite couple is affectionately named, in relative peacetime following an 18-month time skip since the pair imprisoned Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan). The pretty-much-married couple are happily raising daughter Judith (Chloe and Sophia Garcia-Frizzi) and are taking the charge in shepherding in a better world.

“They didn’t have a great deal of time in their relationship where things were not full-throttle intense,” Gimple said. “And these 18 months, while they haven’t been a picnic, the war has been over. It’s sort of remarkable to see… the way it’s written and the way Andy and Danai play it, Rick and Michonne just feel like a very tight couple.”

“It’s something to see,” he added. “Their scenes together are very special.”

This season sees Rick overseeing a major project that will symbolically and literally link the five communities he’s trying to lead towards a brighter and peaceful future where “every life counts,” while Michonne — having already taken on even more responsibilities at Alexandria — has made it her mission to develop and establish a charter to lawfully bind the survivors as enemies-turned-allies must now work and co-exist together.

Lincoln teased a potential Richonne baby down the line, telling ComicBook.com in April Rick “without a doubt” has an eye turned such major forward-thinking.

“I think the whole point is to start again and to restart and it’s about the future, and it’s obviously the next generation and, as far as we can tell, we’re outnumbered undead to human a lot. It is about repopulating the world. I think that they make a terrific couple and I don’t think he would hesitate,” Lincoln said.

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“Also, maybe in a couple of episodes time, there may be a jump ahead in the curve and maybe setting themselves to that job at hand.”

The Walking Dead returns with its ninth season Sunday, October 7 on AMC.