Andrew Lincoln might be one of the big British actors who has made it big on US television thanks to his role as Rick Grimes on The Walking Dead, but to many here in the UK, he’ll still always be Egg on This Life.
Lincoln has had quite a successful career, but it was the hit 90’s drama around five young professionals that really kicked it all off. Football obsessed, hopeless, introspective and the heart of the group of housemates, we followed every step of his life as his relationship with girlfriend Milly dissolved, he quit a potential career as a lawyer and tried his hand at becoming a writer.
His career followed that of This Life co-star Jack Davenport, who went on to headline comedy series Coupling before heading off to Hollywood where he was part of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, appearing in films like Kingsman: The Secret Service while mainly settling into US shows like Flashfoward and current show White Famous. While Davenport became more famous first, Lincoln is arguably recognisable now thanks to his current TV success.
His next role came a few years later in Teachers, a fantastic comedy series based around the teachers of a Bristol secondary school that are more out of control than the students. He played English teacher Simon Casey, a man that fawned over his female colleagues, struggled to relate to his students (despite his best intentions) and then utterly failed to start a new life after quitting his job, returning with his tail between his legs a few months later. It proved that Lincoln could be a leading man and for two series he was the central character in Teachers before recurring in the third series in 2003 – the same year he played the role of hapless romantic Mark in Love Actually.
After his first noticeable Hollywood role alongside a hugely talented ensemble, Lincoln stuck firmly to television, and was the lead male in supernatural thriller Afterlife in 2005 and 2006, playing university lecturer Robert Bridge who became involved in a series of supernatural events with medium Alison Mundy. A year later he reunited with his This Life cast for reunion special This Life+10, playing his iconic role of Egg one last time.
2010 was the year where Lincoln really got noticed across the pond; after playing the role of Hugh Collinson in the first series of Sky1 drama Strike Back, he was cast as Rick Grimes in the The Walking Dead. With an utterly convincing southern accent and the charisma and gravitas to lead the ever-changing ensemble, Lincoln has dazzled audiences for eight seven years; the upcoming eighth season of the The Walking Dead will deliver the show’s 100th episode.
While Lincoln has focused on playing Rick Grimes since 2010 – a one-off return as Mark in charity special Red Nose Day Actually aside – it will be interesting to see the roles the actor takes when Rick Grimes’ time on The Walking Dead ends – whether he makes it to the end of the series or not…
The Walking Dead returns to UK screens for Season Eight on Monday 23rd October.