Star Seth Gilliam warns “shocking” deaths are headed to The Walking Dead.
Asked for a preview of the remaining four episodes of Season Nine by host Chris Hardwick on Sunday’s Talking Dead, Gilliam’s answer was simple: “Yes, there are some shocking deaths to come.”
The Walking Dead in recent weeks has heavily foreshadowed it will borrow a major turning point from the comic books, in which numerous survivors belonging to Alexandria, the Kingdom, and the Hilltop meet their end at the hands of Alpha (Samantha Morton) and the Whisperers.
Season Nine has already navigated the losses of Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and Maggie Rhee (Lauren Cohan), who are alive but elsewhere, making Jesus (Tom Payne) the first major casualty of the season when he was caught unaware and killed by a Whisperer posing as a walker in the mid-season finale.
“We knew that there needed to be something momentous to happen to kind of kick off this season Whisperer storyline,” showrunner Angela Kang told ComicBook.com.
“And in the show we often diverge from the paths from the comic book, because it’s just our array of characters is so different. But it had to be something that really would affect the story at Hilltop, and a character whose life really mattered, and what they stood for matters to our characters. And so, there’s a lot of factors that go into deciding who's being written out and why and things. And so, it’s something that we take very seriously and not very lightly, but it seems to work well for the story, and definitely you feel the effect of this death rippling through the entire season. And so, I think it’s had a powerful impact on the story.”
The Hilltop may not have seen its last taste of tragedy: another prominent Walking Dead character belonging to that community is expected to be axed by the end of the season, further dwindling the ensemble cast.
Gabriel’s romance with Rosita (Christian Serratos) and his decision to be present in the life of her soon-to-arrive child with Siddiq (Avi Nash) — after some pushing from a fawning Eugene (Josh McDermitt) — could have anything but a happy ending: of the four characters involved in what Kang has dubbed a ‘love quadrangle,’ two meet gruesome ends in the comic books during the storyline now unfolding in the show.
Gilliam warned just weeks ago devastation lies ahead in the coming episodes, leading to suspicions the priest is doomed to die before season’s end. Worse, the character responsible for Gabriel’s gory comic book death has just reached The Walking Dead — putting all of its survivors on notice.
The Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9/8c on AMC.
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