Fear the Walking Dead returns for an explosive third season on June 5th, premiering with an action-packed double-bill at 9pm on AMC – exclusive to BT customers.
Alycia Debnam-Carey, one of the show’s original cast members, spoke to BT.com exclusively about the politics, romance and tone of season 3.
We also spoke to the popular Aussie star about her huge social media following and incredible diehard fans.
How similar is Alicia to Alycia?
"Well, we have the same name. We are both determined. I like to think I am pretty optimistic. I think Alycia is going through a whole lot of changes though this season. I think she was quite idealistic and optimistic.
"We start out this season really with her changing and having a bit of an existential crisis of what really matters now. I think there’s a quite a deep sadness that she has, that permeates through a lot of her character – I think that might be the difference between us.
Were you a fan of The Walking Dead before you starred in Fear?
"I watched it after I got the role. And then I’ve watched like four seasons in two weeks. [Laughs] I just did a whole binge.
"I’m not watching it now, because it got – it started getting way too intense. I’m working on a show that’s like that and then I was watching one and it was too much. I was inside a dreaming Zombieland. I just thought, ‘this is too much’."
The opening episodes of Fear season 3 are quite dramatically different to what we’ve seen before aren’t they?
"Yeah! Absolutely. I think they definitely upped the pace and they upped the action. They added some great new characters as well. It adds a whole new element of power dynamics and power struggles which is really cool. We are in a bigger environment and world together that is really exciting for us to explore. It’s made everything a lot more energised."
Is there any chance of a new romance for Alycia in season 3?
"Maybe! If there is it wouldn’t be a romance in the pure, current sense of the word. It would be more of an apocalyptic relationship – but I really can’t reveal anymore!"
The show feels like it has a real political edge this season. How did you feel about that?
"I think it’s absolutely amazing how current and topical the issues on our show are. In terms of the political climate it seemed like the more shooting and filming we did the more relatable and relevant the themes became. The things that are coming out from the show and in this season I was like, ‘wow this could not be more politically relevant!’
"And the issues we cover are the border problems like territory disagreements – these are all happening and being discussed right now in America. Our current political climate is suddenly becoming very primal and primitive and suddenly a lot of people are afraid of and don’t trust various different types of immigrants and are fighting over territory. I really thought in 2016/2017 we were so far beyond that, yet it seems like the current climate is bringing everyone back to that primal, alpha level and it’s really interesting to see how that coincides so well with the themes of the show.
"Hopefully people will see our show and see how it magnifies what is going on in the current world."
You had a six month social media blackout and now you’ve returned. What prompted that?
"I needed to just have a break from it, I always had a funny relationship with social media. I really needed a break to think about why I use it and what it means to me, as I don’t inherently trust it.
"I think it not an informed way to present any human being and I found it really hard to grapple with why have it in the first place. I think it has many contradictory elements to it and so I just decided to move myself very much away from it and avoid the stress and anxiety that it can cause. And once I did get rid of it, I was amazed at just how quickly that anxiety disappeared.
"But I have also noticed how valuable it is and how important it is to honour the people that are really supporting you and sharing what you are doing, which is such an incredible and humbling thing. It is an overwhelming feeling but in a really magical way and I guess I just really think, ‘OK you just have to be part of this’. I guess I should stop now or I could end up writing a novel about it!"
What are your favourite encounters you've had with fans?
"I have seen a lot of tattoos. When I first saw that I was a bit surprised! I remember when I was at Copenhagen Comic Con I had people saying, ‘just write your name on my arm and I will get a tattoo of it!’ Or ‘Can you do a drawing and I will get a tattoo of it!’ I was like, ‘I can’t draw, so here’s the worst picture in the world - do you really want to get this tattooed on you?!’
"But yeah fans have done the most incredible things for me both on and off social media. I had two groups of people buy me two stars and named them after me. That just knocked me to my core. That was just so generous and beautiful and I think it’s hard because the fans are so generous and I really want to thank every single one of them. That was such an incredibly beautiful gesture."
Fear the Walking Dead returns on Monday, June 5 at 9pm on AMC – exclusive to BT customers.
Watch AMC on BT TV channel 332/381 HD and BT Sport pack subscribers on Sky Guide channel 192.
The double-bill premiere will also be simulcast with the US at 2am on Sunday, June 5.
The premiere episode will also be shown on BT Sport Showcase on Freeview channel 115.
Photo Credit: Carlos Tischler/REX/Shutterstock/AMC