Daryl has been a fan favorite since the beginning. What it is about him that’s connected with people?
It’s a combination of things. Daryl was destined to become mini-Merle, so he sort of had a life sentence within a life sentence. He started off early on saying he’s better on his own, but I think he’s sort of finding this sense of self-worth through all these other people. You watch this guy open up. He’s blossoming into this new person. There were earlier scripts that had him saying a lot of racist things and taking drugs. I talked to the showrunners back then and was like, “I don’t want to take drugs. I don’t want to say anything racist. I want to play him like somebody that grew up with that around him and was embarrassed to grow up like that.” They were gracious enough to let me run with it.
Here’s some articles that contain spoilers about season 4 of The Walking Dead, if you’re interested.
Five Things You Need to Know About The Walking Dead Season 4 via Dread Central