'Walking Dead' Season 4 spoilers: Andrew Lincoln, Norman Reedus and more cast and crew talk what's next

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walking-dead-season-4-cast-comic-con.jpgAs they do every year, AMC's hit zombie drama "The Walking Dead" took Comic-Con 2013 by storm -- even if they were down a few key cast members for the return (R.I.P. Andrea, Lori, T-Dog and Merle).

Inside the show's press room, discussion topics spanned their fallen comrades, a new direction under showrunner Scott Gimple and what sounds like a highly intense (duh) season ahead. 10 highlights from those discussions follow:

Andrew Lincoln on what's different in Season 4...
"In these scripts that I've read so far you really understand the impact the world is making on these people's psyches. So much of the show has been kinetic and very much in the moment. I feel like now there's breathing space and you really feel the full impact of how it really is psychologically changing a lot of these people. Which for me is a very, very interesting area to explore."

Gale Anne Hurd on establishing a more dangerous world in Season 4...
"Those of you who saw the four-minute promo have a good idea that once again, there are threats from within. There are human threats. It's a world in which the walkers predominate more than ever, and they're pressing in upon them. It's not just one walker in a field somewhere. They're omnipresent, and they're pretty ravenous. And boy, does Greg Nicotero have some new tricks up his sleeve."

Greg Nicotero on ramping up the walker threat...
"Our group's been on the road for a long time and they've become very proficient at killing walkers. We wanted to make sure that the threat was still there. [The writers are] crafting these moments where our group could potentially find themselves in the middle of a little nest of walkers without being prepared. It doesn't matter how great and how efficient they are as killers; if they're caught off guard they're caught off guard.

"This season we've probably surpassed Season 1 and Season 2 completely in terms of numbers of walkers. You can see in the trailer, there are shots of 100 to 200 walkers coming up to the fence of the prison, and that was for the most part done all practically. We're always trying to push it."

David Morrissey on Season 4 surprises...
"What they're coming up with is very surprising. That's the main thing: you'll be very surprised by many of the characters' developments. And other characters that may be less at the forefront of the stories in the past -- they step up, and they're just great. You're in for a great treat."

Robert Kirkman on Season 4 plans for The Governor...
"The fact that we're able to keep [The Governor] on the show and do more cool stuff with him, I think keeps people guessing and keeps us doing new and interesting and crazy things. When you see what we do with him in season 4, you'll be like, 'Oh yeah, that is a great reason to keep that guy around.' It's gonna be some really cool stuff."

Norman Reedus on whether Merle's death last season will lead to any conflict with Rick...
"The thing with Rick and Merle -- you don't tell Merle what to do; if Merle decides he's going to go do something he's gonna go do it, and I don't know that that blame would be passed around. [Daryl] knows [his] brother and if he's got his mind set to something he's gonna go do it. There's lots of internal things going on, but at the heart of it people in the camp try to have each other's back until they don't. Rick's like the brother that Daryl doesn't have in a lot of ways. And then there's a lot of weird resentment as brothers have. There's all sorts of things going on there."

Danai Gurira on Michonne joining the group and whether she'd ever take a leadership role...
"Michonne [is] such a loner, for her it's about [choosing] to be a part of a group. She chooses to be amongst these people and she chooses to contribute. Her belief in them is that there's something about this group of people that in some ways could save her soul. But there is an aspect of her lonership that could come into play. For her it's never about, 'Oh, there are all these men' -- Tyreese or whoever, it's not how her mind works. What she takes comfort in is when she can just be alone sometimes."

Chad L. Coleman on Tyreese getting his chance to shine...
"It's been jaw-dropping, their commitment to Tyreese. Each and every script's just 'Wow, wow, wow.' So what was intimated last year as we moved towards the end -- the commitment to the development of this guy, the audience opening him up and getting an opportunity to see who he is -- they've been spot-on with that."

Andrew Lincoln on how Rick has been impacted by Andrea's death...
"Certainly for Rick it was one of the turning points along with [Carl] becoming a murderer. [Those] were two very, very important beats that made him rethink not only his responsibilities as a father but rethink maybe his whole attitude to surviving in this world. That's where you arrive in episode one ... [Bringing the Woodbury survivors to the prison] is a huge call for someone who's been pushing people away and not trusting and leaving their bags by the roadside for the whole season. Andrea's death must have had a profound impact. She was trying to do what Rick probably would have tried to do two seasons ago. She was trying to unify two groups of warring people."

Lauren Cohan and Steven Yeun on Maggie and Glenn's apocalypse romance and possibly expanding their family...

"Now Glenn is so much more a part of that family, it is a pretty solidified thing. We're a couple, it's official. We do try to live to live this season, not just survive."

SY: "I think without spoiling anything, it's like being at the precipice of deciding what survival and what society is at this point. It's kind of the mantra for everyone, 'What is the point of life at this point?'

LC: "You can be a couple in Manhattan and think you don't have financial security enough to have a baby, and you have it anyway. You can be a couple in the apocalypse who doesn't have enough physical security to have a baby, and I'm not saying which way it's going to go, but it does mirror life in that respect -- When is it safe enough? When do we know?"
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