The Walking Dead: Lauren Cohan Discusses Transformation of Maggie, Ramification of Mid-Season Finale

One of the most changed characters in The Walking Dead figures to continue her stunning [...]

One of the most changed characters in The Walking Dead figures to continue her stunning transformation when the second half of season 8 returns, as Maggie -- played by Lauren Cohan -- will use her passion for vengeance to fuel her.

Maggie, when last seen, was an executioner of an imprisoned Savior at the Hilltop -- a far cry from her awe-shucks farm girl introduction in season 2 -- and according to Cohan, the rage she felt after seeing one of her own killed by Simon will only escalate.

"I think that these actions definitely ripple through her, as we saw at the end of episode 8. She is so determined to take some kind of action when they get back from their conversation at the road with Simon, and so shaken up," Cohan told Entertainment Weekly. "This has honestly been like the wave hitting the shore since losing Glenn. I just think there's only so much that a person can take, and in the aftermath of all of this happening, she really does need to put her foot down and show that she's running the f—ing show at the Hilltop, and show that she's going to direct things there. This definitely sends that message.

"She's thinking about Hershel and Glenn and where she's come from and what she now needs to do and how she now needs to suit up. I don't think she regrets doing it, but she does feel it. This is just an armament that is becoming more and more necessary for her. It's just one of the hard decisions that we're going to see her having to make."

Maggie spent the course of the last season cementing herself as the de facto leader of the Hilltop, undermining Gregory — who has shown to only have his best interests in mind. Her, and his, actions in the first half of season 8 has only added to her position of strength within the community.

Now, that she has shown that there is a little more emotion than her usual tactful moves, the ramifications of her actions may come back to haunt her.

Cohan said that Maggie is certainly going to have to shoulder more of a mental load than she has before because of it.

"Oh yeah, I think it was definitely impulsive revenge and reaction, based on how she reacts after it all happens, in cold blood killing somebody. But does she feel that it still has the desired effect? I think that she does. I was believing that Maggie was kind of navigating this world still with compassion and still a really hopeful person, but she's just really pulled in different directions trying to sustain that," she told the magazine. "So I was really surprised, and I think I realized, "Oh, this is kind of what's been brewing for her underneath all along.

"She's dealing with that while trying to maintain some control and give into her compassionate side and her hopeful side, but she obviously had this lurking anger. More than anything, I think she just got to a point where she snaps and she reacts. We can all relate to your patience being tested and your heart being broken and you still try to do the right thing despite just wanting to lash out. I mean, what would be appropriate to what you've gone through? I think that she's just at a point now. You can see everybody's sort of threadbare. She gave into that anger."

The Walking Dead returns to AMC on Feb. 27, at 9pm E.T.