The Walking Dead has mastered the element of surprise with each coming season. Last night was the season nine finale, and viewers finally got to see a winter storm break out. The episode had its fair share of drastic events as a blizzard wreaked havoc for each community. Not only were our survivors fighting against Mother Nature, but the threat of Alpha and her group lingered on.
When the Whisperers was first introduced in season nine, we immediately knew how terrifying the group was compared to other enemies we’ve seen in the past. Their ability to walk amongst the dead and control herds has proven them to be a dangerous group. Going into season 10, the episodes will focus heavily on Alpha (Samantha Morton) and her mask-wearing villains.
“Now things ramp up and it’s time to go to war, but, to add another twist, the Whisperers are not your normal group,” said showrunner Angela Kang. “They’re not behind walls somewhere. You can’t just go knock on their door and have guns pointed at their gates. That’s not them. We’re playing with the expectations of are they even where they say they are at any given time. They’re migratory.”
In the infamous pike scene in last week’s episode, one of Alpha’s victim was Ezekiel (Khary Payton) and Carol’s (Melissa McBride) son Henry – Lydia’s (Cassady McClincy), Alpha’s daughter, love interest. The loss of their child put both parents through an emotional toll which caused them to eventually break up.
“It can reveal cracks in a relationship that maybe were there all along, or can create new cracks,” Kang explained. “So we wanted to play the emotional truth of that and the fact that, for Carol, part of that fairytale of being at the Kingdom, it was a package deal. It was Ezekiel. It was Henry. It was the place. It was all the people. And so when all of that falls apart, what she refers to as the thing that is always the thing that she kind of wants to revert to, which is, I just want to run away from it — it becomes a big part of her story going forward.”
This isn’t the first time Carol had to face a death of her child. In season two, her daughter Sophia was discovered in a barn full of walkers, having already turned. The result of that had made Carol into more of a thick-skinned, badass of a woman. It’ll be interesting to see how she will cope with grief this time around.
The season nine finale delivered on ending and creating new storylines. Season 10 will surely be a fresh start for not only the groups but the show as well.