- Warning: There are spoilers ahead for “The Walking Dead‘s” season nine, episode 13, “Chokepoint.”
- INSIDER breaks down some of the smaller moments and nods you may have missed on Sunday’s episode of the AMC zombie series, including a fun story from Khary Payton behind-the-scenes.
Sunday’s episode of AMC’s “The Walking Dead,” “Chokepoint,” gave us that big Daryl and Beta showdown. It also introduced us to another group of survivors, the Highwaymen, who have aligned themselves with King Ezekiel and the Kingdom.
In addition to a moment you may have missed in the opening credits, I’m adding in a few plot details you may have overlooked and something about one of the background actors Khary Payton told INSIDER this week. Keep reading to see what you may have missed on “The Walking Dead.”
The season nine opening credits have changed to include a Whisperer.
At the start of season nine, the new opening credits ended on one walker making his way toward Alexandria. If you haven’t been watching the opening credits closely since then, take another look.
Since the addition of the Whisperers on the show, two more walkers have joined in at the end of the opening credits. One looks like one of the undead, as she’s missing part of an arm; however, the one to the right is a Whisperer. He walks a bit different and appears to be holding a weapon.
It’s a nice little addition and may also be a hint of things to come. Are the Whisperers going to eventually raid Alexandria? They do in the comics.
The Whisperers refer to the undead as Guardians.
You may have been so focused on the introduction of Ryan Hurst as Beta last week that you may have missed that the Whisperers refer to the undead as their Guardians. “Guardians” was the title of last week’s episode.
You may have caught this last week, but at the time I wasn’t sure if I misheard the Whisperers. It’s clearer to make out at the start of Sunday’s episode after Beta talks to a dying Whisperer.
“Lydia will walk with us again or they will all walk with the Guardians,” Beta says as he orders a group to get together to go after Daryl, Connie, Henry, and Lydia.
Diane suggests the Highwaymen may be a group of Saviors left out in the wild.
Carol says that’s not possible. Ezekiel agrees because the Saviors wouldn’t write a message, but the audience knows that’s not what Carol is referencing.
Carol single-handedly killed Jed and his group of Saviors on season nine’s sixth episode.
After the group disrespected her son, Henry, and stole the stone in her ring, she paid them a visit and lit them on fire. Carol watched the group burn alive.
INSIDER asked Khary Payton, who plays Ezekiel, if his character is aware of what Carol did. Probably not.
“They didn’t show all of it, and there’s a chance that maybe he knows a little more, or he suspects more,” Payton told INSIDER. “I feel like there’s a chance that he suspects something from that when she said, but I don’t think she divulged everything that happened to Jed and all of that with them. I think she kept that to herself.”
The Highwaymen had some pretty interesting demands in the zombie apocalypse.
They wrote a very coherent and grammatically correct letter.
According to “Talking Dead,” show writer Eddie Guzelian listed the Highwaymen’s demands on the letter.
The requests included non-GMO crop seeds and 40 paperback books (fiction preferred, no romance novels). No wonder Carol thought they may be worth speaking with and offered them a chance to view a movie.
You don’t see it on Sunday’s episode, but one of the Kingdom fighters actually took out a bunch of the Highwaymen during the ambush.
Khary Payton told us there’s a background actor for the Kingdom, Brandon Stoker, who took out about five guys easily when the Kingdomers confronted the Highwaymen.
“Behind Ozzy, the main Highwayman, is one of my Kingdom guys, one of my background actors. His name’s [Brandon] Stoker,” Payton told INSIDER. “When we ambush the Highwaymen, Stoker comes and accosts about five of them all at once.”
“And it was all I could do not to laugh, because I was like, ‘OK. How are we gonna take out all of these Highwaymen?’ and my boy Stoker literally took out five or six all by himself, and I was just like, ‘You know what? We’re going to be just fine. I got Jerry and I got Stoker.’ I just want you to know that in the background of the Kingdom, we got some hardcore dudes.”
If you return to the scene seen above, you can see Stoker take out one of the Highwaymen blurred out in the background.
Khary Payton has no idea what the Highwaymen symbol means.
Payton says there wasn’t anything else about it in the script. Our guess of what the symbol means is as good as any.
“I don’t know if it was a symbol of somebody with two arms and two legs and no head,” Payton told INSIDER. “I’m more concerned about, or at least Ezekiel’s more concerned about, what they want than that symbol. I didn’t know if it was some weird anarchist deal or maybe a road that’s split oddly. It could be a lot of things, but I’m not exactly sure what the deal was with that.”
Showrunner Angela Kang told Entertainment Weekly the symbol is “a horizon and then a road going up to meet the horizon at a point.” Mystery solved.
Beta’s outfit has nods to Daryl, Jesus, and Negan.
A week after Ryan Hurst told INSIDER Beta’s costume steals items from other “TWD” characters, he appeared on “Talking Dead” to reveal some of the Easter eggs in his look.
“I’m not going to give all of them away, but I kind of went with a Jesus jacket, went with a little bit of a Negan sash, got some little things going on on my ankles like Norman’s [Reedus] character,” said Hurst on the “TWD” aftershow.
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