‘The Walking Dead’ Promotes 4 Actors, What Does it Mean?


AMC has promoted four actors on The Walking Dead to series regular for Season 7. What does this mean for the show moving forward?

At least four actors on the zombie drama show will be earning bigger paychecks next year.

THR has reported the news of these four promotions for Season 7 of The Walking Dead, none of which would be shocking for readers of the comic series. All have been adapted from the comics where they each served larger roles into the main story.

The four actors in question are Jeffrey Dean Morgan (Negan), Tom Payne (Paul “Jesus” Rovia), Austin Amelio (Dwight), and Xander Berkeley (Gregory). All four first appeared on the show in Season 6 in fairly small roles in terms of screentime given, but expect to see quite a bit more of them in Season 7.

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Given what we know about the comics, and considering how showrunner Scott Gimple likes to adapt its material as closely as possible, this gives us some clues about the story for Season 7. As all four play important parts in the books, the promotions of their actors suggest that they’ll but just as vital in the on-screen version… (comic spoilers ahead)

For example, Jesus is basically the Daryl Dixon of the comic books. We only got a sample of just how badass the character is on the TV series, and as he wants to take down Negan just as much as Rick, expect him to cooperate with with Gregory to bring the Hilltop and Alexandria together in a plot for revenge against the Saviors— just don’t don’t expect Gregory, the cowardly leader of the Hilltop, to be as willing to help out.

Dwight has already become one of the most hated villains on the TV series after killing Denise with an arrow through the head. In the comics, however, he kills another beloved character in the same fashion, but ultimately double-crosses Negan to help Rick and the others defeat the Saviors in the end. In the books, it takes a lot for the group to trust Dwight, especially after killing Abraham. I’m guessing these same struggles will apply on the show, given how they did something similar with him killing Denise.

As for Negan, well, this one doesn’t deserve too much of an explanation. Negan’s probably the most important villain in the Walking Dead franchise. Killing one of our favorite characters is merely an introduction to all of the horrible things we can expect to see from Negan. I think we can expect him to wind up causing far more damage than the Governor, so expect to see him live past Season 7 and beyond.

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Of course, none of this gives us any additional information about who died at the end of Season 6. Whoever the victim is revealed to be won’t change the story with these four particular characters. But Jesus is one of my favorite characters in the books, so hopefully his stepping up will fill the void of losing someone we love.