AMC has officially released the talked about scene from Sunday’s The Walking Dead 914, ‘Scars,’ which finds a pregnant Michonne (Danai Gurira) forced to slaughter a group of feral children to rescue her kidnapped daughter. The clip takes place just moments after Michonne is forced to kill Jocelyn (Rutina Wesley), an old friend revealed to be a twisted pied piper who infiltrates communities before raiding their supplies and stealing away with their children.
Michonne attempts to ward off the feral children without killing them, but she’s quickly forced to turn lethal when her pregnant belly is sliced and the other children, each wielding weapons, prove overwhelming and relentless. The horrific act happens just minutes after the children are instructed to brand Michonne and Daryl (Norman Reedus), who become prey in their sick game: “Mark to kill, kill our mark.”
Because of its depiction of child death and violent acts committed by young actors, AMC tapped psychologist Dr. Jeff Weber to oversee filming with Dr. Kris Mohandie acting as psychological consultant.
“We actually had the kids all meet once we cast them. In casting, we let the parents and the kids know exactly what the roles were going to entail,” director Millicent Shelton explained to INSIDER. “Then we had them meet with a psychologist I believe that met with all the children and talked to them about it.”
Shelton also participated in conversations with her assistant director and episode writers Corey Reed and Vivian Tse, engaging with the children and their parents to better help the young actors process the scene some viewers called traumatizing.
“So there was three levels of conversation that happened with the kids. The teacher who overlooks the kids is on set every single time the kids were there. If there was any issue, we talked to them,” Shelton said.
“Honestly, we didn’t have an issue with our main kids because we had gone through everything, step by step. We did so much before we got on set, that when we were actually there they all knew there were rubber knives and we had choreographed all their movements so they knew what was going to happen. So it wasn’t like anybody was surprised.”
The Walking Dead next airs its penultimate of Season Nine, ‘The Calm Before,’ Sunday, March 24 at 9/8c on AMC.