This 'Walking Dead' Newcomer Has A Complex Comic History
Spoilers ahead for The Walking Dead Season 9. The Walking Dead midseason premiere picked up exactly where Season 9 left off, after the Whisperers made their grand entrance and murdered Jesus. Luckily, our heroes even captured a member of the not-so-looming threat and put her in jail at Hilltop. But Lydia from The Walking Dead is not as innocent as she claims to be. She and her people are very dangerous.
Fans of The Walking Dead will remember that when Enid first appeared on the show, fans who had read the Walking Dead comics thought that Enid might be the Whisperer named Lydia. She wasn't, of course. But now, in Season 9, the "real" Lydia has finally appeared. In the midseason premiere, Michonne and Aaron blindfold the mysterious Whisperer girl, take her back to the Hilltop and question her with Tara and Daryl. Nobody is buying her innocent act, and rightfully so, but still, they don't get very far with her. Once Daryl leaves though, she befriends Henry, who is still locked up for drinking and sneaking out of the compound and reveals her name. However, Daryl is listening from the window above the cell. He knows who Lydia is now. (Was this a "Good Cop/Bad Cop" plan between Daryl and Henry? Possible, so that's something to watch.)
In the comics, Lydia is Alpha's daughter. This makes sense as actor Cassidy McClincy, who you may know from Love, Simon and Castle Rock, looks a lot like Samantha Morton. It's Alpha, played by Morton, who most likely shows up in the episode's final moments. Just like on the AMC series, in the comics Lydia is one of the Whisperers who attacks Jesus and becomes a prisoner at the Hilltop.
She's also not necessarily a villain. The Whisperers have taken an entirely different, nihilistic view to the end of the civilized world. They're not interested in rebuilding it. However, in the comics, Lydia ultimately defects and becomes loyal to the Hilltop and our heroes there. Hopefully that will happen on the AMC series as well.
However, for the time being Lydia cannot be trusted. She insists that her mom is a good person, "just one woman out there alone." We know that's not true. She even tells Daryl that she and the other Whisperers were always going to kill them — that's just what people do now. That attitude isn't exactly welcomed at the Hilltop.
"Places like this don't make it," she says to Daryl. "They never make it. My mom and me, we saw it happen over and over.' Lydia may think she's keeping her identity safe, but details like that will make it easier for Daryl and the others to deduce that Lydia's mother is a leader, not alone, and not a follower. "I barely remember the world before this," she continues, "but my mom... she told me how it was changing. How we had to change with it. How we need the dead and each other to keep safe. We were never alone."
So, while there's hope for Lydia yet, at the time being she represents the menacing new antagonists on The Walking Dead. The fact that her mother is out there looking for her also does not bode well for anyone at Hilltop, the Kingdom, or Alexandria. Or anywhere really!
She's also part of an interesting new group of characters on The Walking Dead: young people who came of age during the zombie apocalypse. How these various philosophies and living situations have nurtured and corrupted the next generation will be fascinating going forward, and slightly terrifying too.