The Walking Dead Reveals Whisperer Beta’s Secret Identity

The Walking Dead again peeked beneath the flesh mask of Whisperer Beta (Ryan Hurst) when 'Look at [...]

The Walking Dead again peeked beneath the flesh mask of Whisperer Beta (Ryan Hurst) when "Look at the Flowers" revealed Alpha's (Samantha Morton) number two was once a famed country singer named "Half Moon." Beta's true identity was first hinted at in a Season 5 episode of spinoff Fear the Walking Dead when Daniel Salazar (Rubén Blades) abandoned vinyl records showing an unnamed country music performer whose music was enjoyed by Magna (Nadia Hilker) in The Walking Dead 1005, "What It Always Is." The song performed by Hurst's country crooner was inspired by former Beth Greene actress Emily Kinney's recently released single "The Turtle and the Monkey."

In "Look at the Flowers," Beta discovers Alpha's decapitated and zombified head at the Whisperer border before returning to the western-inspired Grand Hotel. Inside is a shrine to the past, adorned with blood-covered show posters advertising "HALF MOON: LIVE IN CONCERT. THE LEGEND HIMSELF FOR ONE NIGHT ONLY." At the sight of it, Beta flies into a rage, ripping the poster from the wall and smashing a guitar to pieces.

After stabbing Alpha in the brain, killing her for good, Beta studies a dusty record: "Half Moon Live in Concert." The man once known as Half Moon plays his album, drawing a record crowd of walkers in one final, twisted concert. Gathering "guardians" for his walker army that will next be unleashed upon the enemy Alexandria, Beta tears off half of the mask he's never removed, replacing the sliver of skin with flesh taken from Alpha's head.

The Walking Dead Beta Half Moon Ryan Hurst
(Photo: AMC)

In the comic books, the nameless Beta was revealed to be a famous basketball player who loaned his celebrity to a series of car commercials.

After Season 10 episode "We Are the End of the World" revealed Alpha and Beta's first meeting — where Alpha recognized the face beneath the mask when she peeked beneath his balaclava — Hurst revealed he worked with showrunner Angela Kang to develop a backstory for the mysterious Beta, who is ferociously protective of his "secret identity," even killing an underling Whisperer who recognized his voice.

"One of the most fun parts that I've had on this show is the secretive nature of where this guy came from. It's something that I very early on brought to [Kang], that I had this idea of his backstory and also, how they met, and we collaborated a bunch on making this back story a reality," Hurst previously told EW. "So, I'm just super happy with the way that it all worked out because Angela and I've been talking about this since the beginning of Season 9, when I first signed on."

Hurst has since hinted more of Beta's backstory could be explored somewhere outside of The Walking Dead proper.

New episodes of The Walking Dead Season 10 premiere Sundays on AMC. For all things TWD, follow the author @CameronBonomolo on Twitter.