While “The Walking Dead’s” core cast of characters are known for fighting zombies and other survivors, it seems that the real life actors have a different menace to contend with: internet trolls. Josh McDermitt, who plays Eugene Porter on the popular AMC series, has deactivated his social media accounts following online harassment. The move comes after McDermitt posted a Facebook Live video addressing the death threats he has received since the season finale last month.
— TWD HQ (@TWD__HQ) May 2, 2017
“Death threats, don’t send me death threats, because I will — I’m gonna report all that shit to the cops. I’m just sick of it,” McDermitt said in a video, which was later re-posted by @TWD__HQ. “You can hate Eugene, I don’t care. I’ll argue that you’re wrong, but you can think whatever you want. But when you start saying you hope I die, I don’t know if you’re talking about Josh or Eugene. I gotta report that shit. So just don’t be an asshole. And then … stop complaining. Let’s just stop complaining about everything on the internet. OK. Seriously. Go spend time with your family or friends or loved ones. Just get off the internet.”
“Is there anything else? Other than I love you? I do. I love you guys,” he added at the end of the video.
The harassment started after McDermitt’s character Eugene turned against Rick and joined season antagonist Negan and the Saviors. McDermitt initially described the reaction to the character’s betrayal as positive, though he feared a backlash, which did indeed come.
This isn’t the first time that McDermitt has spoken out about Internet harassment. In December 2016, the actor also addressed the body shaming that Alanna Masterson, who plays Tara Chambler, experienced.
“It’s very frustrating, the Internet, because people feel they have a platform to just say whatever the hell they want and it can be anonymous because you can say the most racist, vile, stupid crap and hide behind the name @GrimesLovesMcDermitt … they think they can hide behind that a lot of times I feel like they’re just kids,” McDermitt told The Huffington Post shortly after that incident. “People need to chill the F out with the crap that they’re putting on the Internet. It’s very disturbing because we are people, everyone.”
Starring Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes, Chandler Riggs as Carl Grimes, Norman Reedus as Daryl Dixon, Melissa McBride as Carol Peletier, Lauren Cohan as Maggie Green, Danai Gurira as Michonne, and many, many more, “The Walking Dead” will return for its eighth season in October on AMC.
(via Entertainment Weekly)