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When The Walking Dead came to a close at the end of Season 6, there were seemingly more characters than there were zombies in Season 1, and the first half of Season 7 is set to open things up even wider with the introduction of new communities and locations. And guess what? The back half of Season 7 is apparently going to add even an even bigger array of faces to this post-apocalyptic melting pot, as the show appears to be casting for a new character that makes it seem like the series will be making a jump forward in the comic books.
Walking Dead producers are reportedly casting for a character going by the AKA of "Brion," who is being described as an "educated, poker-faced leader." which indicates an entirely different group is coming beyond the Kingdom survivors and more Saviors. There's a bit of stoicism going on with "Brion," who doesn't take emotions to extremes while confidence is always apparent. There is one goal going on with this character, and that's clearing a pathway to survival for the group. Sounds about right.
Perhaps the most interesting bit here is that the casting announcement, posted at SpoilingDeadFans, is looking for either a male or a female to take the role, which throws things for a bit of a loop as far as nailing down who it could be, assuming it's an established comic character. The person being cast would be a recurring guest star, set to appear in the 10th and 12th episodes, with the chance to return for the season's final two episodes. Episode 10 is pretty damned early for another group to pop up. So let's move onto the guessing games.
Spoiler warning for those who aren't mostly current with the comics, as elements will be discussed below.
Interestingly, there is only one major-ish male leader yet to come, and that's Pete from Oceanside. The show is supposed to be filming at a beach at some point, so that could make some sense in that respect, but Oceanside is quite a ways deeper into the comic narrative, and it hasn't really been developed all that much just yet. Of course, it would be a nice way to put the show and the comic on the same trajectory, making a later-stage play like that. But it feels a little far-fetched.
I'm more inclined to believe this will be a live-action version of Magna, the tough-as-nails leader of a small, nickname-less group that Jesus finds on a dangerous outing. This is a fascinating little group as far as how they fit into things, and they would be welcome in this show, in as much as any more people can possibly be welcome. But it would be a major shame if "Brion" is meant to represent Magna and a dude gets hired instead. Unless it's like, Walton Goggins or something. I'd take him over my own mother.
A gender swap would also be rough if this was meant to represent The Whisperers' Alpha, whose femininity is a very important part of all aspects of her character. Plus, I can't imagine we'd get four episodes with Alpha in Season 7, considering Negan won't have been reigning for all that long by Episode 10. But this show has done stranger things with its pacing.