A newly uncovered secret on The Walking Dead will have a “big impact” on the story revolving around Whisperer leader Alpha (Samantha Morton) and acolyte Gamma (Thora Birch), according to showrunner Angela Kang. In episode 10x07, “Open Your Eyes,” Carol (Melissa McBride) used Alpha’s daughter Lydia (Cassady McClincy) as part of a move to create dissension among Alpha’s followers: Carol hoped to reveal Lydia to a captured Whisperer (James Parks) and uproot his loyalty to Alpha, who convinced the Whisperers her daughter was dead. Because the prisoner was poisoned and killed by Whisperer spy Dante (Juan Javier Cardenas), Carol changed plans and took Lydia to a Whisperer border where she was spotted by Gamma.
“This is a huge moment for Gamma, and it certainly is going to turn her story in a way,” Kang told EW. “For somebody who was such a true believer — who went so far as killing her sister to save her leader — she now realizes that everything she believes is wrong.”
In episode 10x02, “We Are the End of the World,” Gamma was forced to kill sister Frances (Juliet Brett) when she attacked Alpha near her walker horde. Friendly encounters with Aaron (Ross Marquand) had Gamma doubting her allegiance to Alpha and the Whisperers, only for Alpha to re-indoctrinate Gamma to prevent her being “seduced” by Aaron and the Alexandrians.
Now that Gamma is privy to Alpha’s most closely-kept secret, she could switch sides and work to topple the Whisperers from the inside.
“We feel that, for Gamma, was the moment where she realized, ‘My leader who I thought was pure and that stood by her principles, and we have to stand by these principles, and that’s the only way to survive, is just a hypocrite and a liar, like every other person. And look at what I’ve lost and what I’ve done,’” Kang said. “That’s going to have a big impact going forward. I can’t get into specifics because it’s too spoiler-y, but I think Thora did an amazing job playing her heartbreak in the moment. It’s not just anger or shock, there’s real heartbreak there.”
On Talking Dead, executive producer Denise Huth noted it was “absolutely crushing to Gamma when she sees Lydia standing there.”
“Gamma has been a true believer. She’s been very loyal to Alpha and to the Whisperers. She believes in this, she believes this is how they survive. So much so that in episode 2 we see her kill her sister for the sake of protecting Alpha,” Huth said. “She sees what her sister is about to do and she doesn’t hesitate, she just does it, because she believes in Alpha so very much. And so to see Lydia alive and well and standing there, and knowing that she’s been lied to, it makes all of it seem like a lie. It makes her question every decision she’s made, and what she’s done, and why she’s done it. You killed your sister to protect this woman who blatantly lied to you, what else is she lying about?”
“It is a totally crushing moment for Gamma, and a life-changing moment for Gamma. How will she react to that?” Huth continued. “How will she handle the responsibility of what she’s done with faced with the fact that everything she believes to be true is a lie?”1comments
Audiences will find out as early as the midseason finale: a sneak peek look at episode 10x08 sees Gamma approach Aaron and offering intel that could prove invaluable in the ongoing Whisperer war. “The World Before” premieres Sunday, Nov. 24 at 9/8c on AMC.
For more TWD intel, follow the author @CameronBonomolo on Twitter.