The Walking Dead: World Beyond performs sleight of hand when a pair of tricky grifters pull one over on our survivors in Sunday's 106, "Shadow Puppets." When Felix (Nico Tortorella) catches Percy (Ted Sutherland) spying on the group's camp, the stranger claims he was left stranded when a pair of bandits took off with his truck loaded with barrels of refined fuel. Wanting to accelerate the group's 1,100-mile trek to New York to rescue dad Dr. Bennett (Joe Holt) from the clutches of the Civic Republic, Iris (Aliyah Royale) strikes a deal: if they help Percy reclaim the truck, he drives the six of them where they need to go.
When Felix leads Iris, Hope (Alexa Mansour), Elton (Nicolas Cantu), and Silas (Hal Cumpston) into town, the separated kids are duped and robbed by a "dead body" that turns out to be Tony (Scott Adsit), Percy's uncle, playing possum. It's only after the thieving Percy and Tony turn back to save Iris from a swarm of "has-beens," their name for empties, that they apologize for conning the group.
Tony impresses Elton with sleight of hand magic, revealing his past as a small-time illusionist at the Paradise Lounge in Las Vegas. His 15-year- mastery of illusions, card tricks, and even some admitted dabbling in ventriloquism have all proved useful for the two so-called "professional scammers" post-apocalypse.
"As far as I'm concerned, I'm still in show business," Tony says, adding they have a history of performing for the "small fee" of taking shelter at friendly settlements. And Percy, who was raised by Tony after his birth mother bailed, is a quick-study who was "grifting kids in the sandbox."
As Percy puts it, "It's how we get what we need without hurting people."
During a sidebar with Felix, Tony says they've got themselves a setup with no punchline: they both want the truck, but only Tony knows where to get more fuel. He'll make good on his nephew's promise to give the group a ride, but he wants to know about the three-circle insignia on Felix's jacket. Felix waves it off as an emblem of the Campus Colony where they live, but Tony calls him on it: "As the saying goes, don't bullshit a bullshitter. Especially one from Vegas."
He peels away some tape revealing the symbol of the Civic Republic Military on the truck, telling him this group doesn't mess around — and they're nearby, often circling the area with helicopters. Tony found something pointing to a refueling station when he picked the truck driver's pockets, but it's going to take a little more to keep avoiding the soldiers armed to the hilt in all-black uniforms.
If they get into a bind, Tony says, Felix's jacket patch might get them out. Under this new deal, Tony and Percy will drive the group wherever they want to go — like the Civic Republic research facility in New York, where the CRM is secretly conducting zombie experiments.0comments
"This is a mystery person that will potentially be around for longer than an episode. And we're at the halfway point of season 1 and the presence of this character coming in is really going to change the trajectory of these next five episodes in a way that I think is going to be irrevocable," showrunner Matthew Negrete told EW about Percy. "Things are going to happen in a way that are ignited by the presence of this character. And there's not going to be any going back. There really are a lot of dominoes that we've been setting up this season, and I will say the presence of this character is going to send that first domino falling. And I'm excited for people to see where it all goes."