The Walking Dead: Michael Rooker Explains Why He Won't Play Merle Dixon Again

Michael Rooker is finished with The Walking Dead. The actor who portrayed Merle Dixon in the show's early seasons is not enticed to reprise the role for any sort of flashback or one-off episodic arc in the upcoming Tales of the Walking Dead anthology series. As his Love and Monsters film recently became available for on demand viewing, Rooker caught up with ComicBook.com to field an array of questions about his recent work. He bluntly and gracefully explained why a brief return to Merle Dixon would not be something of any interest to him as he continues to grow with other new roles.

"Actually, I'm not interested in doing a one off, you know?" Rooker said, as seen in the video above. "I wouldn't be interested in that. I'm being honest, I would not."

The reason behind it is simple. Rooker wants to play characters with potential for growth. Merle can't go anywhere as his final destination was revealed in earlier seasons of The Walking Dead.

"I wish them all the luck in the world and I love the story," Rooker says/ "That's why I wanted to do it in the beginning, you know? But I think Merle had a great send off as well as comparing Merle sendoff with Yondu sendoff. They both had really amazing, I don't know what we could have done to make it even more, to make it better, you know? And so I'm the kind of actor that sort of, unless it's obvious that the characters gonna move on, I'm not interested in revisiting, you know? I like to move on with my career. I like to move on with my work and I like to do different things. So, you know, hopefully, hopefully that'll happen."

Although Love and Monsters is set in a world where people have to either live underground or risk being eaten by gigantic monsters, Rooker contests that it is much less an end of the world setting than that of The Walking Dead's zombie apocalypse.

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"It's not the end of the world. It's the beginning of the world," Rooker said of Love and Monsters. "Monsters are all about replenishing and redoing the world, you know? what the humans have Dylan's character, Joel is like just the first to come out. Maybe he's the first ever to come out of his hiding place, you know? So there's bunker and I think other people came out."

Love and Monsters is available on demand now.