When it comes to The Walking Dead, there are really only three ways that things can go for a person after being bitten by a zombie. There’s the good old-fashioned headshot, there’s being devoured alive so there’s not enough of a body left to reanimate, and then there’s turning into a zombie. Alexandrian leader Deanna looked to be one of those who had been too thoroughly devoured to return after her bite in the first half of Season 6; yet, from what we can tell from a newly released image, Deanna is totally coming back as a zombie. Check it out!
This isn’t the first clue that we’ve gotten that Deanna may not be gone for good, but it is the first time that the zombie that appears to be Deanna has been prominently featured. Instead of being tucked away in a tiny picture, we get a huge image all on its own.
The Walking Dead certainly has a history of being cryptic with its teases over hiatus, but fans of the sixth season will know that this is pretty obviously Deanna. Even if the resemblance to actress Tovah Feldshuh were absent, the necklace and wedding ring would have been dead giveaways. Besides, the zombie is totally wearing Deanna’s shirt.
Assuming that Deanna is coming back as a zombie, Tovah Feldshuh is still keeping quiet about it. In a way, she should be flattered to be brought back in the zombie capacity. It feels like it’s been an awfully long time since we’ve seen a main character properly zombified, so Deanna dead and walking will definitely leave an impression. It'll be a slightly horrifying impression, but any of us who have made it through part of Season 6 of The Walking Dead shouldn't be particularly squeamish anymore.
The same can’t be said for the people of Alexandria, and Deanna's big return as a zombie could be exactly what they need for the new world of the zombie apocalypse to sink in. The situation has been getting steadily worse for the Alexandrians ever since Rick and Co. came in and delivered a brutal reality check, but seeing their leader shambling around as a zombie and trying to eat her former followers could definitely be the kick that they need to start contributing more.
Assuming that there’s an Alexandria left to contribute to, anyway. When last we saw the place, the settlement was overrun by zombies so much so that even zombie killers extraordinaire Rick and Michonne were in full flight mode. The time may have come to leave Alexandria behind… and run right into the clutches of Negan, probably.
We haven’t gotten a glimpse of Negan just yet, but none of the clues about his identity in the show make it look like he’ll be any more merciful than his comic counterpart. For the sake of Rick and our merry band of survivors, we’ll have to hope that they don’t all run into Negan anytime soon. They can deal with zombie Deanna first, which should certainly be exciting enough for the midseason premiere.
The Walking Dead returns from hiatus on February 14 at 9 p.m. ET on AMC.