The Walking Dead: Season 10 Finale Opens "New Chapter" For Lauren Cohan's Maggie in Final Season

Lauren Cohan is back in the saddle as Maggie Rhee when The Walking Dead returns with its Season 10 finale, "A Certain Doom," on October 4. In her first episode back since Cohan stepped away from the zombie drama in its ninth season, Maggie unearths a letter from Carol (Melissa McBride) warning about atrocities committed by Alpha (Samantha Morton), the since-slain leader of the Whisperers. Now under the command of a vengeful Beta (Ryan Hurst), the Whisperers are at war with Maggie's old friends — including Daryl (Norman Reedus) and Carol (Melissa McBride) — who must survive the walker horde threatening to wipe out the survivors and their communities.

"It's so exciting to have Lauren back with us," showrunner Angela Kang said during Sunday's Walking Dead Universe Preview Special. "We've been saying for a long time that we wanted to tell more story with Maggie, that we have things in the works, and we were trying to figure it out, so it's really exciting to get into this new chapter."

"Her character is so impactful and has these longstanding relationships with various characters that are on our show, such as Daryl and Carol. They've been through so much together," Kang continued. "But also we know there's still Negan to contend with. He's just kind of been on this redemption arc, making some progress, and now that she's back, they were never expecting to be in the same community together again. So obviously that's going to have a big ripple effect into the season to come."

Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) murdered Maggie's husband, Glenn (Steven Yeun), some eight years earlier. In present day, while undercover with the Whisperers, Negan unwittingly participated in Alpha's attack on the Hilltop that left the farming colony in ashes.

Should he survive the Season 10 finale, Negan will have to face a reckoning when he next meets Maggie in Season 11.

"She's lost the Hilltop, she thought it was there, and it's been burnt to the ground," Kang added. "So a lot of story is going to come out of that, too."

In the wake of a six-year time jump sparked by the presumed death of Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) in the ninth season, it was Siddiq (Avi Nash) who explained what happened to Maggie and son Hershel after a falling out with Michonne (Danai Gurira). She was away "someplace far" with Hilltop benefactor Georgie (Jayne Atkinson), who offered Maggie and the farming colony a "key to the future" in Season 8 Episode 12, "The Key."

Cohan is now back in Georgia for filming on The Walking Dead Extended Season 10, a batch of six all-new episodes to air on AMC in early 2021. These episodes will bridge the gap until the delayed eleventh and final season, now premiering late next year, where Cohan fully rejoins the show as a series regular.

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"She will return somewhat a new character, which is kind of cool, and all those things that affected and changed her are a story that we want to mine," executive producer Scott Gimple previously told ComicBook.com about Maggie's return. "And the dynamics that she left the story in are not the dynamics that she's coming back to. And for her especially, it's like she took a year off of high school, and she's coming back, and everybody has changed."

The Walking Dead Season 10 finale, “A Certain Doom,” premieres Sunday, October 4 on AMC, followed by the series premiere of new spinoff The Walking Dead: World Beyond. For all things TWD, follow the author @CameronBonomolo on Twitter.