Walker Stalker Atlanta: Jon Bernthal, IronE Singletone, & Scott Wilson Panel Recap

The "OG Crew" Panel consists of Scott Wilson (Hershel) and Jon Bernthal (Shane). The duo are brought onto the stage. Bernthal is introduced as "Judith's Dad."

The moderator asks Bernthal about he reacted to the news that Rick believes Judith is Shane's kid. "Just telling me something I always knew, ya know?"

Bernthal is then asked about the reaction he gets to being Shane. "People always tell me that they hate him, but The Walking Dead has the greatest fans on Earth. The people I've worked with, the people I've gotten closest with, are the ones I was on The Walking Dead with. I'm just real grateful for it."

Wilson is asked about working against Shane in Season 2. "I saw these guys in the first season and said, 'Yeah, I'd like to play with them.' Jon's character, when he opened the barn, he opened the door for Hershel to realize there was no coming back once you were a walker. It was fun but I knew it was going to be from the beginning. Anyone that came in, these guys treated them right."

The host opens the floor up to fan questions.

For Jon: Did you receive any criticism from fans when you were cast as The Punisher?

"In anything, not just with superheroes, people are going to criticize what you do. When we were first introduced for The Walking Dead at NYCC, I was booed by everybody."

The answer is interrupted for the final panelist to come on the stage, IronE Singleton (T-Dog). He apologizes for being late, he was in the bathroom.

How would Shane handle Negan if he would have survived?

"From what I here, he would've killed his ass. If there was someone who was a danger to Rick and his family, Shane would've done something about it."

An audience member asks if The Punisher could teach Rick how to shoot. "That's cold-blooded, man."

If you could go back and play any character in any movie, what would it be?

Singleton says Rocky. "When I was a kid, Rocky inspired me." Bernthal: "The first thing that popped in my head, I'm just gonna say it. I'd love to play Tootsie." Wilson says, "It's all about looking forward, not back."

For Wilson: What's coming up next for you?

"I have a little cameo coming where I'm a real bad-ass. I'm gonna be a mean guy. It's called 'Hostiles' and I play a bad guy. But not for long, so don't blink (Laughs)."

For Jon: What's your process for getting into a character?

"I think with that, everybody is different. The best thing about people and the best thing about things you love is that everything is different for everyone. For me, you just gotta pour every bit of yourself into it. I was a messed up kid, and this job really saved me. I know have a wife and kids and a home, and I'm grateful for it. You gotta walk the walk. Your heart knows how much you give and how much you pour in."

If you had to pick between Shane or Punisher, who's hell-hole would you rather live in?

"I don't think I could play Frank Castle without knowing what it's like to be a father and a husband and know what it's like to love something more than yourself. For Frank, it's a never-ending darkness. With Shane, it's something different. He's scored and jealous but he's also loyal and loving. I think Frank's darkness is a little darker."

For Jon: Do you think if Lori and Shane didn't have a relationship there still would've been a power struggle with Rick?

"I think they made really good partners, and there was always a dynamic between Rick and Shane. Rick was always the leader and Shane was kind of like the pitbull. Shane was always more suited for the apocalypse than Rick was, and that would've rubbed him the wrong way when Rick tried to lead in kindness. So, I think eventually they would've come to odds. I think Shane was a better leader for that role than Rick and he knew it."

How would the storyline have changed if each of your characters were still alive?

Singleton: "I would've gone into business with Carl in Alexandria." Wilson: "I don't know. You don't want a one legged guy in an ass-kicking contest."

What would be different if Shane would have killed Rick instead of the other way around?

Bernthal: "There was never a chance of that. I think Shane went out in the woods that day to make Rick kill him. That's what it always was for him, that was the endgame. I really pushed for Shane's gun to be unloaded in that scene. I wanted the gun to be empty because Shane knew he had to go when he went."

Shane clearly has Rick's taste in women. If he would've survived, would he have tried to hook up with Michonne, too?

"You know, it's the zombie apocalypse. I think he'd be down for whatever. I mean, probably, she's beautiful so why not? I'm trying not get myself in trouble here. That's what I loved about him and Andrea getting together. They were there. In disasters, that's what people will do."

How would Shane have handled Lori's death?

"I really don't know. It would've been major. It's a crappy answer and I'm sorry but that's all I got."

What was your reaction when you found out your character was going to die?

Singleton: "It was bittersweet. I was only supposed to last a couple of episodes but I got the privilege to last until Season 3."

Wilson: "I knew I was going. I read the script and knew 'Yeah, they're gonna kill me off.' Once Hershel started being proactive, I knew he wasn't gonna last."

Bernthal "I knew I was going from the beginning. It was nice because I could plot out a beginning, a middle and an end. And they really killed me. They killed my ass twice. I came back after I was killed and I went to say goodbye and I was this incredible family working. I couldn't say goodbye, I had to just watch from a distance. I shed a little tear, and just watched it go on without me from the distance. It was cool to switch and watch from the perspective of a fan."

Panel Ends.