The Walking Dead‘s Glenn Mazzara, who is leaving the series at the end of season 3, has spoken about his vision, the season 3 finale and the upcoming fourth season. Who will be next to leave The Walking Dead?

Glenn Mazzara recently sat down with Dread Central and gave his verdict on his time on The Walking Dead, working alongside the creatives and how various decisions have made the show what it is today.

In the episode “Home,” fans saw the tragic death of Axel, and Mazzara has revealed the decision making behind Axel’s removal from The Walking Dead. Mazzara said, “To be very honest, I didn’t want to kill off any of the major characters. Carol was on the chopping block, but I didn’t want to kill Carol because we have a story coming up with her. We looked at the possibility of killing Beth. I don’t think that actor knows that.”

It appears inevitable that the creative influences within The Walking Dead would be completely ruthless when it comes to axing characters off the series, and as Norman Reedus said, all the actors do race to the back page of the scripts just to see if their characters have made it. A close shave indeed for Emily Kinney and Melissa McBride.

Mazzara continues, “I felt that would have had too big an impact on the group. It would have just devastated poor Herschel. It would have taken him down a path I didn’t want for the rest of the season.”

And for the Greene family, including the torture Maggie has seen from the wrath of The Governor, it would be fair to say the storyline would have been over-complicated and certainly over-emotional.

But, it was Axel’s turn to be eliminated and, unfortunately, Lew Temple’s time came to an end.

Mazzara also spoke about his role as the showrunner on The Walking Dead, and  potentially underlined where his and Robert Kirkman’s visionary differences were. Mazzara says that the showrunner “provides the vision for show” and that they “deserve it,” as they are the creative vision. Mazzara also commented, “we’re involved in all aspects of the show, both creative and production-wise. We’re responsible for budgets, schedules, wardrobe, casting… there’s no aspect of the show that I’m not involved in, that I don’t approach from a position of authority.”

It’s a little cryptic, but “deserving it” may have conflicted with Kirkman’s best interests of The Walking Dead. Mazzara certainly gave his dedication to the show and with his creative visionary taking over the show, this may have lead to a similar departure to that of Frank Darabont.

Mazzara doesn’t finish quite yet, as he then goes on to speak about Scott Gimple, who will be replacing Mazzara for season 4, as well as what we might be expecting for the finale of season 3. Mazzara says, “Well, the next guy, Scott Gimple, has been involved for a while. And Robert Kirkman and Gale Anne Hurd and Greg Nicotero, the creative team, were all producers on Season 3. There’s no material there that is surprising to them. That being said, the season finale will be a bombshell. We wouldn’t be The Walking Dead if we didn’t push the storytelling every week.”

A bombshell is on its way for the finale of season 3, and we have already reported that Dallas Roberts has said the season 3 finale, “will be stronger, crazier and you won’t see it coming.” As the season 3 finale approaches, we expect more and more leaks to be coming from the cast, but what do you think will happen? What will Mazzara do as a send-off for The Walking Dead? And, how do you think Scott Gimple will perform with season 4?

The Walking Dead returns to AMC this Sunday at 9pm ET/PT for the episode, “Clear.

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