Newest Walking Dead star Ryan Hurst, who plays intimidating Whisperer Beta, says he borrowed from other characters on the show and helped tuck away secret Easter eggs in his costume.
“I’m a little bit of a self-diagnosed polymath. I do a little bit of everything,” Hurst told EW, explaining he partnered with costume designer Elaine Montalvo to craft Beta’s unique look.
“When I was on that show, The Outsiders, I designed all of the tattoos. I just kind of stick my thumb in everybody’s pie, but Elaine’s the costume designer. I’m a bit of a clothing designer, as well, and I told her that, and she was just like, ‘Well, fantastic. Let’s get together.’ And I was actually there shooting a different project in Georgia at the time, so I had about three weeks prior to filming where we all kinda got together and went over some looks together to really meticulously put this guy together.”
Though he remained tight-lipped on the specifics, Hurst said he “wanted to just steal a bit from all the best people on the show.”
“There are little tiny Easter eggs if you look really closely at Beta’s costume,” he hinted.
“There are some little Easter eggs in there of little pieces that may resemble other characters on the show, and that was sort of done consciously. I’m not gonna really reveal much more than that.”
Beta’s scarf looks awfully similar to a red scarf once worn by Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), but fans will have to keep their eyes peeled in coming episodes to uncover other secrets beneath Beta’s costume.
The look includes a walker skin mask that Beta never removes, concealing his true face at all times — a challenge Hurst said he enjoys, even when filming in the Georgia heat.
“I wish I could say that I hate it, but I love it! [Greg] Nicotero is a master teacher when it comes to zombie stuff, and it’s so comfortable. Even though you’re in Atlanta in 110-degree weather, I love wearing that mask. I really, really do,” Hurst said, adding he’s equally unencumbered by Beta’s trench coat, which appears to be covering a weathered ‘have a nice day’ smiley face shirt.
“Every single job that I seem to do for long periods of time, I’m in 10 layers of leather in 110-degree heat,” he said.
“I don’t know why the universe has sort of put that in my path, but I’ve sort of accepted it at this point. It’s like, ‘Yeah, you’re gonna be on a bunch of hit shows, but you’re gonna be sweating your ass off.’”
Beta next grapples with Daryl (Norman Reedus) in Sunday’s 913, ‘Chokepoint,’ when Alpha (Samantha Morton) sicks Beta and a team of Whisperers on Daryl, Connie (Lauren Ridloff), and Henry (Matt Lintz), who have escaped with her daughter Lydia (Cassady McClincy).
The Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9/8c on AMC.
Have you subscribed to ComicBook Nation, the official Podcast of ComicBook.com yet? Check it out by clicking here or listen below.
In this latest episode, we talk about the new X-Men: Dark Phoenix trailer, Will Smith breaking up with the Suicide Squad, & so much more! Make sure to subscribe now and never miss an episode!