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Emily Kinney discusses her guest spot on ABC's 'Forever'

Since leaving her role on AMC’s The Walking Dead in the mid-season-five finale, Emily Kinney has been busy. In this exclusive interview, the EW Community caught up with Emily in between music gigs, TV guest spots, and recording a new album to learn what she’s been up to and get the inside scoop on her upcoming role on ABC’s Forever.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY COMMUNITY: What’s the experience been like, being killed off of a show? The fans were pretty upset about it.

EMILY KINNEY: I would say now, I mean, it’s great. What’s really cool about this show is that even though I’m done working on it, there are conventions and people reaching out. It’s really exciting to see that fanbase, that they’re so interested in what I’m going to work on next. Obviously I miss working on the show. Right now a lot of the cast members are on hiatus anyway, but what’s cool is that working on that show, I made these really amazing friendships. When I do these conventions, I get to see all these friends again. So even though I’m not working on the show anymore, I still feel really connected. It’s also one of those shows that people will watch later—you know, binge-watch. So I constantly have people tweeting at me or contacting me saying, “I just started watching this show” or “I just finished season four.” So even though I’m done working on it, it’s kind of one of those shows that keeps generating more fans, and it’s something that will always be a big part of my life.

So what have you been up to since you left?

I’ve been so busy. I actually was trying to take a couple of weeks in January to just be at home in New York, but that quickly turned into other stuff. I was working on some new music; I have an album coming out in May called This Is War. So I’ve just been finishing mixes for that, but it’s all tracked, so that’s exciting. And then I worked on Forever. I’ve been working on The Flash. Also trying to fit in some music shows when I can, in between the TV stuff. I’ve been traveling a lot.

Let’s talk about your episode of Forever. The episode you’re going to be in is also the return of Hilarie Burton’s Iona Payne, whom we know is a dominatrix. Is your character involved in that world of S&M?

Not so much that—more like this idea of obsession. I mean, she definitely encounters that. Hilarie Burton is more the teacher of this class, and one of the students is murdered and I play that girl’s roommate. I did get to do some scenes with Hilarie, which was awesome. I watched One Tree Hill, and also I was really into MTV when I was younger, so I watched her on TRL. So it was really cool for me to get to meet her. I didn’t tell her at first, and then finally I texted her and I was like, “FYI, I loved you on TRL!” And she’s awesome. She’s such a good actor and I really loved working with her. So it was a really fun experience.

Forever is about an immortal medical examiner. Are you into the supernatural genre in general?

Yeah. I mean, I like stories that feel real and believable. But I think people have a lot of imagination and fantasy, and this idea that someone could be around for so long and live forever … our mortality is such a huge part of being human. So how would that change your experience if that’s not part of who you are? How would that change how you live your life? Would it make it better? I connect to stories that feel grounded in reality … but I do think that a big part of that is imagination.

So these shows with supernatural themes allow for personal exploration within that framework?

Yes, and I do feel that both The Walking Dead and Forever, even though they have these elements that aren’t real, both shows are grounded in real people and real stories. And it makes you buy into the fact that there are zombies [or a man who can’t die]. Both shows have good fanbases because people are really able to believe it and buy into it, and it feels like real circumstances.

Besides Hilarie Burton, who else did shoot scenes with? Did you work with Ioan [Gruffudd] and Alana [De La Garza]?

Yeah. We had one [scene] … we didn’t have as much time all together on the set. I got to shoot scenes with them as well. They’re really awesome. That was episode 16, so they really know their characters and how to navigate the set. So I watched them and looked to them.

Coming from being a series regular, do you find that it’s hard to adjust when you’re guest-starring on a show?

With Walking Dead, I did know the character so well, so by year four there were elements that were just automatic to me and relationships that were very real to me. If I had a scene with Lauren [Cohan] or I had a scene Norman [Reedus], by the end it’s just something that came so naturally. But I remember at the beginning setting that framework up, me and Norman really rehearsing a lot. So in a show like this, you have to remember back to the beginning. I have to be like, okay, now I need to set up the framework for this character because I don’t have all this experience of being her for years, so I have to go back and make up this girl’s backstory. There’s a little more of that, so in that way it’s a little more work and it’s a little more difficult.

For the most part, it’s similar. Just being back on set felt homey to me, even if it wasn’t my set. I felt so happy. There are certain things that are the same … the hair and makeup chair, and the cameras, and the crew. There are just certain things that are very fun. I felt very happy just to be arriving on set.

Catch Emily on Forever on Tuesday, Feb. 24, at 10/9C on ABC.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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