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That 'Walking Dead' Couple Is Finally Official!

The Huffington Post The Huffington Post 22/02/2016 Bill Bradley

You can't Danai it anymore!

In the closing moments of "The Walking Dead" on Sunday, something amazing happened: Michonne (Danai Gurira) and Rick (Andrew Lincoln) finally got together. And now all is right in the world.

Well, except for that whole zombie thing. But who really cares?

Richonne is now official!!!

The Huffington Post spoke with Michonne, aka Gurira, who told us the moment was "great for the characters" and just "made a lot of sense." 

(Yeah, you can say that again. Fans have waited for this couple for years!)

It all went down in Sunday's episode, "The Next World." Following a time jump, Rick and Daryl go on a supply run and end up losing a truck full of stuff in a lake and bringing a guy named Jesus back to Alexandria. (Yeah, comic fans. That Jesus!) Michonne has an emotional day where she and Spencer come across a zombified Deanna and finally put her to rest. Rick and Michonne eventually end up on the couch together and he presents her with some mints he scavenged. (She asked him for spearmint toothpaste earlier.)

One thing leads to another, and they start kissing. (Whaaaaattt!) Yada yada yada and the pair wind up naked in bed together, only to be woken later by Jesus, who breaks in the room and tells Rick they need to talk.

Wow. We can't even process this. Thankfully, Gurira was around to break it all down, explaining how things aligned for that big moment, what's going to happen next and even her ideal first date for Richonne.

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Richonne is finally out there. Is this a big weight off your shoulders?

Oh God, yes! Because people come at me. They come at me hard about this. “Why aren’t they together!” And people I don't even expect. With old friends who I didn't think watched the show, and all of a sudden they have me in the corner about Rick and Michonne, and I have to lead them, you know, fan them off with, "Oh, they're just friends. That’s an important connection." Meanwhile, we shot that scene months ago. 

Just saying that is a nice weight off the shoulders to have it out there. Definitely.

Fans were waiting for this forever, and it finally happened after Rick gave her some spearmint. Is spearmint really that good? 

[Laughs] No, it’s the gesture. The fact that--it’s a girl thing. When the guy says something really sweet--and it was really sweet. Like, [Rick] has the day out there with God knows what, talking about this [truck] sinking to the bottom of this [lake] and everything. She doesn't know the details, and all she knows is he made sure he came home with something for her that she asked for--something at least aligned with what she asked for. He made sure not to walk in the door empty handed, which is really, really sweet.

She’s finally in this moment where her heart actually gets to take the wheel. The other day, she could've easily just gotten up and made some cocky comment like, "Don't be here too long," or, "Get your shoes off the couch," and been like, "What was that anyway? Moving on." She would've shut it down the previous day, but I think today is the day where things aligned and her heart actually took control of the situation. She’d shut her heart down in this way since her ex.

How long did you know this was going down?

Well, knowing and knowing are two different things. I definitely had chats about it with [Showrunner Scott Gimple], honestly, since the [Season 3] "Clear" episode. It was sort of something that could possibly -- something that made sense to me. 

Did that moment with Carl on the porch affect Michonne's decision?

The entire day, a long period of time, affected her decision.

[Rick and Michonne] both have this new lease on life, and I think they’re bonded in a whole new way now because they’re both on the same page with Alexandria as well. But also because their joint love for his son, and you know she lives under--[she] moved with them. C'mon, guys [laughs]. And now she’s kind of being mom, totally, to his children. Ultimately, that moment with Carl, definitely, that's why that day instead of any other day. But also that time with Spencer. Seeing this man, who's broken and in pain, and seeing him find his mother who's a woman I promised I was going to figure out what I really wanted. Then seeing her brings it back to memory. I haven't done what she told me to do, and there she is in my face. I think all of that led up to that moment on the couch.

Are you prepared for the fan reaction?

I have no idea what it’s going to be. Do you know?

You should turn off your Twitter notifications. Your phone's going to blow up.

Oh, I don't know how to check that. Why? What do you think is going to happen?

The entire Internet might shut down. That's what I think is going to happen.

[Laughs] That’s hilarious. Yeah, I have no idea. I mean, in the story, it felt very right. It felt like their natural progression to where these characters would be next. From my perspective, as an artist, you always want your character to feel organic and right and true to them, and this did. It totally did. I can’t speak to how other people are going to respond to it, so we’ll have to see. I have no idea. 

After Rick and Michonne are naked in bed, a guy named "Jesus" shows up in their room. Is this a sign that God wanted this to happen?

I don’t know how good a representative of God Jesus is. We’ll have to find out. Michonne’s jury is definitely still out in that regard, very due to the appropriateness of his entry into her private space.

What was shooting that scene like?

It was great. We had a good time. It was funny because I just met Paul [actor Tom Payne] that week, so I was like, "Wow, so ... what? Yeah, I guess we’re gonna ... yeah, get that out of the way," And he was really funny. A lot of times he’s like, "Oh, you’re so fretting about this," and I'm like, "I'm not fretting. It’s just interesting. The first time we’re going to work together is going to be in this way." I was leaving one day, and he’s like, "All right, Danai. See you in bed." So it was fun. We were joking about it.

What's your ideal first date for Rick and Michonne?

That’s a good question. I mean what could they do? I don’t know. I think she might enjoy cooking him a meal. I know she’s probably done that before but in like a whole different way. It’s not like they can go for a walk in the park [laughs]. But I think something very discreet in one of the homes, alone. A candlelit dinner type thing could be very lovely.

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What's next for Rick and Michonne?

We’ll have to see. I think the thing that I do like about it is --I like that it was earned. It was very much an earned realization. They both had the idea of kind of discovering each other in this way. It did not come easy. It did not come quickly. It was really a very specific path of intimacy that they developed that resulted in ultimately their realizing that they were more than friends.

We've seen Carl get shot, and now Richonne is happening ... where does the season go from here?

Probably more crazy. Probably more crazy than what you can imagine. You know, I don’t think it gets less crazy, so we’ll have to see, but it’s a roller coaster. It’s definitely a roller coaster.

Now that we've seen Rick and Michonne. Is there any hope for Daryl and Carol?

[Laughs] You're gonna have to ask my boss about that. Go talk to Gimple. Go talk to Gimple.

Well, at least we got Richonne!

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"The Walking Dead" airs Sundays at 9:00 p.m. ET on AMC.

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