The Walking Dead comic book could reveal the survivors' plan to escape a walker horde in the television show's Season 10 finale that has been indefinitely postponed amid the coronavirus crisis. The season ended early with episode 15, "The Tower," where Whisperer Beta (Ryan Hurst) steered his herd in the direction of the abandoned hospital tower hiding survivors from the currently abandoned Alexandria, Hilltop, and Oceanside communities. Father Gabriel (Seth Gilliam), Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), Lydia (Cassady McClincy), and Judith (Cailey Fleming) and RJ Grimes (Antony Azor) are among the survivors now trapped by the walker horde, but a currently unrevealed escape plan has been put into motion.
A sneak preview of the episode shows Daryl (Norman Reedus), Carol (Melissa McBride), Luke (Dan Fogler), and Jules (Alex Sgambati) wearing ponchos covered in walker guts to camouflage themselves among the dead, while Kelly (Angel Theory) can be seen donning a Whisperer mask before journeying outside into the swarm of walkers.
"Our plan is the same," says Gabriel in the preview, "four groups, two in each." This line is taken almost directly from the comic book, where the survivors also found themselves cornered by a horde made up of thousands of walkers:
In The Walking Dead #158, which opens with the gruesome death of a character acting as lookout atop a tower, a militia led by former Savior Dwight opens fire on an advancing walker horde unleashed by Beta. Working with the militia is Negan, who has been conscripted by Rick Grimes to serve on the front lines of the Whisperer War to win his freedom after successfully infiltrating the Whisperers and murdering leader Alpha.prevnext
Hiding among the dead are knife-wielding Whisperers, who manage to stab and kill multiple militia members. Magna, Yumiko, and soldiers from the Kingdom arrive and open fire on the crowd, but the army is quickly overwhelmed by a seemingly endless stream of walkers.prevnext
Beta Watch Out
Also hiding among the horde is Beta, acting leader of the Whisperers, who lunges forward and attacks Dwight. He's saved by Negan, who bludgeons Beta with the end of a rifle.prevnext
Rock, Paper, Knives, Bat
Issue #159 opens with Beta and Negan engaged in a vicious brawl, which culminates with Dwight tossing Negan his beloved barbwire-wrapped baseball bat Lucille. Negan's bat meets Beta's dual knives, and their battle ends when Negan, repeatedly bashing Beta with Lucille's powerful blows, accidentally smashes his bat to pieces.prevnext
Divide and Conquer
An unconscious Beta is dragged off by the Whisperers and the militia stands victorious, having managed to pick off the rest of the pack. But when a second wave emerges from the woods, even bigger than the first, Dwight says there's only one way they survive.
Because their last-ditch effort won't work a second time, and because there could be more Whisperers hidden among the herd, Dwight tells the survivors they have to divide and conquer by splitting into four groups to lure parts of the herd away. Dwight's group will keep a distance and take the leftovers back towards their fallback position, where they can pick off the remaining walkers.prevnext
When in Rome...
A Whisperer realizes the herd has been split up, weakening his group's strategy of using the dead for cover. When the Whisperer is killed by a crossbow bolt to the head, his mask made from walker flesh is cut loose by Dwight. Putting it on, Dwight says, "Oh, well... when in Rome."prevnext
Cleaning up the Dead
In issue #160, Dwight, Michonne, and others walk among the dead disguised as Whisperers. When they're discovered, they cut down Whisperers before taking advantage of their camouflage to dispatch the remaining walkers. Dwight and the militia accomplish their mission, but another faction of the Whisperers march on to the Hilltop to launch a fiery surprise attack that leaves the colony led by Maggie Rhee in ashes.prevnext