Who Is Samantha On 'The Walking Dead'? She May Not Be in the Comics, But She Could Become Your New Favorite
Now that we've finally reached the Alexandria Safe-Zone, it's time to start introducing some new characters. Deadline reported in October that American Horror Story actress Alexandra Breckenridge was cast as Samantha, but who is she to The Walking Dead ? The character will debut in this Sunday's episode, titled "Remember." According to Deadline, "the character is an attractive, strong, smart, charming and articulate woman who also has a vulnerable side. She’s a mother with a bohemian spirit, and a talented artist." If you recall, she was cast at the same time as a journalist named Donna. This season, in particular these last few episodes after the midseason break, have been particularly dark. The addition of Aaron and his jokes about dance troupes were a welcome injection of energy into The Walking Dead last week. I wonder what a hippie like Samantha could bring to the show next.
Unfortunately, the character "Samantha" is not in the comic books. The name does appear in the TWD social game, however I do not think she is any relation. Samantha is only mentioned as the daughter of Marla Wilkinson, a woman living in Atlanta. Now that The Walking Dead has finally reached Virginia, I think it's safe to say that this Samantha is an original character.
The IMDb description of "Remember" reveals that the group will have a little trouble adjusting to their new lifestyle. This makes sense. While the group has had temporary shelter before at the prison and the church, the safest ones have almost always been a shelter of their own making. They have not had a good track record otherwise. The Center for Disease Control didn't last. Grady Memorial Hospital was no picnic, and the last time the whole group entered a seemingly safe society run by strangers, it was Terminus. Even if the Alexandria Safe-Zone does not intent to harvest our friends for the slaughter, it's going to take a while for them to trust their surroundings and even get used to like... showers and stuff.
Therefore, my theory is that Samantha is a well-adjusted member of the Alexandria Safe-Zone who will serve as a dramatic foil to the gang as they try to fit into this new community. The fact that she is described as a Bohemian artist is a dead giveaway, in my humble opinion. After so much loss, the characters have reached new levels of depression and apathy about their situation. It seems only natural that the next person they meet should be a cheerful young woman who has the time and inspiration to do things like paint. You could never replace Beth Greene, but perhaps this woman is filling that creative gap, in a way. A character so jarringly "normal" could provide some comic relief when up against our hardened heroes as well.
Another theory I have is that Samantha is the television equivalent of Dr. Pete Anderson's abused wife, Jessie. We heard Pete's name mentioned once in the last episode. Aaron told Noah that he was a brilliant surgeon that may be able to heal his broken leg. He may be a gifted doctor, but Pete is not a good guy in the comics. Their story is a good example of how a place like the Alexandria Safe-Zone could be a well-meaning organization, but human beings are still capable of individual evil. We had some foreshadowing of that theme with the Walker that Maggie found bound and gagged in an earlier episode. Let's hope this isn't the case, for Samantha's sake at least.