Fans have been waiting for months for any information about The Walking Dead season nine. With rumors flying about departures, new cast members, and some returning cast mates, it’s understandable why season nine will be one to remember.  No more waiting, here’s what the cast had to say at San Diego Comic Con.

The Panel: Andrew Lincoln, Danai Gurira, Lauren Cohan, Norman Reedus, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Angela Kang, Scott M. Gimple, Gale Anne Hurd, Robert Kirkman, Greg Nicotero and Dave Alpert

The Walking Dead

Greg Nicotero, Gale Anne Hurd, Angela Kang, Scott M. Gimple, Robert Kirkman, Dave Alpert, Jeffrey Dean Morgan,  Danai Gurira, Andrew Lincoln, Lauren Cohan, and Norman Reedus at the San Diego Comic Con Panel. Gettyimages.com

Yvette Nicole Brown moderates the panel and wastes no time introducing the season nine trailer. 

RELATED: SDCC 2018: God Bless Rick Grimes. THE WALKING DEAD Season 9 Trailer Is Here!

Kang starts talking about the time jump, which is evident in the trailer. Maggie’s baby is born, Judith is a bit older. The communities have built up the communities.

Brown asks Lincoln about what kind of Rick we will see in season 9. Lincoln says this Rick has been through a lot of stress and strain.  So he got a tough hair cut.  This is when Lincoln addressed his exit from the show. 

Gimple then talked about how season nine is very different from any season in TWD. Gurira followed up saying that Rick and Michonne are resetting the world. 

Maybe everyone is on different pages about how that goes down, so we definitely see the complications. When folks are not on the same page there’s going to be some serious conflict…..

Cohan talked about picking up the pieces after the All Out War.  In particular, the person responsible for killing Glenn is still around. And now Maggie’s baby doesn’t have a father. Morgan elaborated saying Negan is going to be very different because he’s facing things he hasn’t dealt with before. Kang followed up saying Negan is Negan. He will try to start some trouble. 

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And then there was talk about the new characters seen in the trailer.  Comic book fans will recognize these characters, but for non-comic fans, there will be a lot of new faces.  The most notable casting news is that of Magna played by Nadine Hilker (The 100), Dan Fogler (Fantasic Beasts and Where to Find Them) as Luke, Lauren Ridloff (Children of a Lesser God) as Connie, and Eleanor Matsuura (Into the Badlands) as Yamiko.  Other new cast includes Zach McGowan (The 100), Rhys Coiro (Ray Donovan), Brett Butler (Grace Under Fire), John Finn (NCIS), and dancer and choreographer Angel Theory.

The biggest news was the casting of Samantha Morton (Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them) as Whisper leader Alpha. The Whisperers are a group of survivors that disguise themselves as walkers.  Yes, this is the new villain and will provide a major headache for Rick and the gang. You may have seen a glimpse of them at the end of the season nine trailer. 

There was some discussion about riding horses.  Reedus is the only character who doesn’t ride a horse. Again, Gimple talked around the possiblity of more crossovers. And just in case you were wondering, Reedus says he’s winning the prank war with Lincoln.  Lincoln disagrees. 

This is Lincoln’s last SDCC as a member of this cast. The audience gave him a standing ovation at the end of the panel.  And he received several hugs from the cast and producers. 

I can already tell this will be an emotional season. The Walking Dead premiere date is set for Sunday October 7, immediately followed by Talking Dead with Brown as host.  

 

 

 

Noetta Harjo
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