Andrew Lincoln is best known now for his role as Rick Grimes from The Walking Dead. Before the whole world went pear-shaped in that universe, Andrew Lincoln was Felix in the cult classic film Human Traffic.
Without knowing it at the time, playing Felix back in 1999 helped shape how Andrew Lincoln would play his future character as Rick Grimes. Let’s explore how ‘90s dance culture equipped #AndrewLincoln with more than the highly useful ability to cut shapes to Fatboy Slim.
Lesson 1: How To Handle Adversaries
Bumping into that one guy you never really liked is always awkward. As can be seen in the above clip, Felix similarly has his own cast of characters to deal with.
You can be direct and rude, but where does that really get you? For Felix and Jip, being painfully polite is a measured alternative to make their way through the exchange without incident.
We all know how well Rick Grimes tackles a revolving door of bad guys in The Walking Dead. #Negan is the ideal case and point.
If he was to speak out against Negan, well - there’s just no sense in it (for now).
True, the likely ramifications would not be as dire if their chance meeting was to become hostile, however any hostile encounter will have implications. Felix rightly choses to:
- Be level headed,
- Understand what they are really saying, and
- Bite his tongue
For both scenarios, when running into unlikable people, the resounding key to both is: DIPLOMACY.
Lesson 2: The Art of Negotiation
Staying alive in The Walking Dead requires a combination of luck and strategy. Combine that with complexities of people and politics, and the option of becoming a zombie could appear surprisingly attractive.
To have any chance of growing old, mastering effective negotiation techniques is crucial. How did Andrew Lincoln learn these techniques? Spliff politics of course!
Just like in The Walking Dead, Spliff Politics is all about manipulating those around you for survival based on a valuable commodity. For Felix, his sanity relies upon his skill of persuasion to ensure a life saving puff of his friend's spliff
Spliff politics is a precariously hard tightrope to cross. The owner of a spliff knows the prize they have in their hands all too well.
As the plot thickens in The Walking Dead, the choices Rick Grimes makes will heavily influence the survival of many. We can only hope #RickGrimes is more successful than Felix...
Lesson 3: How To Learn From The Past
Just like the cast of Human Traffic, Team Rick has had ups and downs. Their journey has taken them on many dusty roads with countless turns. People have come and gone, and their optimism has been perpetually tested.
The reminiscent good old days can provide an enticing distraction away from all that is wrong in the present. Felix in Human Traffic finds himself in a similar longing for what was. Granted, this is a longing for better raves, not normal human civilization.
It feels like a right of passage for an aging clubber to complain about how things of changed. When this cliche conversation finally presents itself there are only two options:
- Let the youngsters have a turn, or
- Step up and own it, glow sticks and all.
For Rick, the time for reflection has passed. We all want Rick to make a decision on The Walking Dead. Stop being a whiner and make a stand!
Now Felix Cuts More Than Shapes
The experience of playing both characters for Andrew Lincoln has allowed him to draw upon a lifetime of refinement. The 1999 Felix has swapped his love of drug-induced mayhem for the grimacing trials and tribulations in The Walking Dead.
For me, seeing Rick Grimes on the screen looking tired, dirty and desperate will continue to remind me of Felix. What’s your problem Rick? It’s just another night on the town!
What other characters played by Andrew Lincoln do you see in Rick Grimes?