As Season 6 continues, viewers will be introduced to new characters on The Walking Dead . Some of them — like Heath, who joined the series in last week's premiere — are characters comic book fans know and love, while others are created specifically for the show. When Merritt Wever joins The Walking Dead as Denise Cloyd in this week's episode, "JSS," she should definitely be familiar to any fans of the comics the show is based on. And based on what we know about her on paper, Denise may quickly become a fan favorite (though not as highly favored as Daryl Dixon, of course).
Even if you only watch The Walking Dead series, you might recognize Denise because the actress playing her has been in many TV shows and movies. In addition to winning an Emmy for her role as Zoey Barkow on Nurse Jackie, she’s known on TV for playing Schmidt’s ex-girlfriend Elizabeth on New Girl. She’s also been in quite a number of movies over the years, including last year's Best Picture Winner Birdman, Meadowland, Tiny Furniture, Into The Wild, and Michael Clayton. The Walking Dead was lucky to cast such an awesome actress.
So what do we know about Wever's latest role? The comic books offer a lot of clues into Denise's future on the show, however some of the information they reveal may be spoilers, so read up on Dr. Cloyd at your own risk.
She’s A Skilled Doctor
In the comics, Denise is one of the doctors in Alexandria, and the only surgeon in the group. Entertainment Weekly confirmed that this aspect of her character will make the jump to TV. seems she will take on the same role on The Walking Dead. Good thing Wever knows her way around the fictional medical field after spending seven seasons on Nurse Jackie.
Denise Dates Heath
It’s been a while since a new relationship popped up on The Walking Dead and I’m ready to see these two hit it off. In the comics, they develop a relationship while Denise is caring for Heath’s friend Scott, who was injured on a run. They begin to sleep together after they share time caring for Scott. While the TV series could always change how their relationship begins, if you see Heath bring a friend to see Dr. Cloyd, get ready for some romance.
She Helps Cure Carl
In a later issue, Carl is badly injured and Denise saves his life. He is in a coma for a few weeks and she helps treat him when he wakes up. It seems like Denise's job is very important to Alexandria, so I hope that means she'll stick around on the show for a while.
She’s Constantly Suspicious Of Rick
I don't blame her, because at this point, even I’m suspicious of Rick. I understand that the members of Alexandria need to learn to fight and fend for themselves, but his behavior is becoming very erratic. In the comics, Denise rallies behind a community member trying to fight back against Rick’s rule, even though she follows Rick’s lead at other times. If the TV series follows this storyline, we'll see Denise struggle over how to handle Rick’s behavior in Season 6.
...Until She Dies
Like most people in The Walking Dead, Denise is not one of the survivors. She is known for being selfless, especially when it comes to helping people, and that’s how she dies. She is bitten in the arm and while Rick advises her to amputate it before it’s too late, she decides to keep her arm to save Heath, who’s leg was blown up by a grenade. By the time she is finished fixing up Heath, it’s too late for her to stay alive.
Based on everything else the comics reveal about Denise, she'll be a welcome addition to The Walking Dead. Let's hope the TV show changes her fate, while keeping everything that makes her so awesome.