The Walking Dead fans are thinking they have met the new villainous group known as the Whisperers in Episode 9x03's opening minutes.
Spoilers for The Walking Dead Episode 9x03 follow. Major spoilers!
The AMC zombie show has promised the Whisperers will be arriving in Season Nine (with two of its heavy hitters being played by Samantha Morten on Ryan Hurst) but the actual date of their debut has not been revealed. As a result, fans are slowing down their DVRs, replaying audio, and zooming in of every passing walker to try and catch them. Sunday's Episode 9x03 created another one of those moments.
Following the sudden and mysterious kidnapping of Justin in Episode 9x02's final moments, the opening scene from Episode 9x03 reveals his fate, creating another temporary mystery. The Savior who was banished from Rick's camp has been killed but in a way which intentionally left him to become a walker.
Shortly after Justin's remains are chewed on by walkers, he reanimates and stumbles into the night. Behind him, more importantly, is a sign which says, "Final Warning."
The Whisperers, a group known to fans of The Walking Dead comics, are quite territorial. The groups wears the skin of the dead, walking among the reanimated with their voices at a whisper to avoid blowing their covers. However, they also mark their territory. While signs such as "Final Warning" are never presented in the comics, their leader Alpha does present Rick and his group of survivors with verbal face to face warnings about crossing into their land. When Rick's group of survivors don't listen, Alpha kills several members of the group and marks the territory with Rick's friends' heads on pikes lining the area.
While this does seem like a tease of the Whisperers may have been planted in Episode 9x03; it is not. The mystery of Justin's killer will be a prominent theme in the show's upcoming episode but the Whisperers will not become a factor until further down the line. Samantha Morten's role as Alpha will not come until later in 2018, with Ryan Hurst's first appearance as Beta coming at a later date.
The Walking Dead Episode 9x03 is titled, "Warning Signs." The official synopsis for Warning Signs reads, "Rick’s vision for the future is threatened by a mysterious disappearance that divides the work camp where the communities are building a bridge." The episode is directed by Dan Liu on a script from Corey Reed.
The Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9 pm ET. Fear the Walking Dead will return for its fifth season in 2019. For complete coverage and insider info all year long, follow @BrandonDavisBD on Twitter and watch ComicBook.com's After The Dead each Sunday night following new episodes.