|This article is about the TV Series character. You may be looking for her Comic Series or Road to Survival counterparts.|
"Alpha" (real name unknown) is a main character and an antagonist as well as a survivor of the outbreak in AMC's The Walking Dead. She is the leader of the Whisperers and the mother of Lydia. She serves as the primary antagonist of the second half of Season 9 and the first half of Season 10.
Alpha is shown to be a highly intelligent, cold, psychopathic, sadistic, cunning, and egocentric woman who is a hardened, determined survivor and a strong leader to those in her group.
She appears to enjoy being in a position of authority and does not take kindly to anyone who opposes her, as she brutally murdered her own husband in front of her young daughter after he refused to abandon their fellow survivors during a walker attack, Matias after he refused to listen to her by attracting unwanted attention, and Helen after she voiced disdain for her decisions as leader. Alpha appears to despise anyone she views as being weak and justifies cold-blooded murder as a way to eliminate weakness from her group. This was displayed when she slaughtered Sean due to him crying after Helen's decapitation at her hands shortly before. She is shown to have no qualms about killing anyone, whether they be adolescents or the elderly as shown by her brutal slaughter of members of the Coalition in order to send a message to her enemies.
Alpha is shown to have completely devolved into nothing but a hardened and primitive survivor. She doesn't even use her real name anymore, showing that she has completely shed the identity and life she once had and has adapted fully to the post-apocalyptic hell. She sees no hope for mankind returning to its original state and views survivor communities as destined to fail, believing that devolving into wild animals is the only true way to survive. Despite her extreme methods of survival, Alpha is a strong survivor and her effective leadership has kept many people alive, fully believing her savage ways make her people stronger. However she does not appear to care for her fellow Whisperers on a personal level and Lydia herself reveals that those who are lost, taken captive, or killed are left behind and no attempts are made to rescue or avenge them. She nearly allowed a helpless infant from her group to get eaten alive by approaching walkers simply due to it crying, seeing it as a part of "natural selection".
Alpha is a terrible mother and is nothing but cruel to her young daughter and only remaining family, having psychologically abused her into thinking her father was the abusive parent and that she was kind and protective towards her, even allowing Lydia to be physically abused by their fellow group members as well as herself. Despite this, Alpha may not be completely heartless and may only want her child to survive, subjecting her to cruel treatments in order to make her strong and ensure her survival, regardless of the psychological torment Lydia has endured. She even actively kidnaps Alden and Luke and goes to the Hilltop in order for Lydia to be freed and returned to her, something she apparently has never done for any other Whisperer. Despite her cruelty towards Lydia, it is evident that Alpha sincerely loves her child as shown by her shedding tears in "The Calm Before" after Lydia refuses to leave the Kingdom with her and she murders a fellow Whisperer in order to prevent her group from learning her one true weakness is her love for her daughter. Despite this, her desire to maintain her power over her group is likely stronger than her love for Lydia, which is likely the primary reason why she murdered the Whisperer who witnessed her crying.
After leaving her daughter Alpha begins to second guess her choice and it is apparent that she sincerely misses Lydia and is revealed to have even built a secret shrine to her at their former camp. She even begins to show mercy towards others who are in a similar situation as her such as when Frances almost risked the Whisperer's lives by crying over having had to abandon her son thus leading her to comfort her in private and also when Carol attempts to shoot her to which she forgives Carol as a mother knowing what it's like to lose a child (though despite this she still sent a Whisperer to trap and kill Carol as revenge for this). Regardless however Alpha appears to have gotten over her feelings for Lydia and remains dedicated to keeping her dominance over her group and tormenting her enemies into respecting her territorial boundaries, though she is not completely without reason as she chose not to punish the Coalition for trespassing into her territory 3 times previously and instead chose to extend her boundaries as punishment.
Mid-Atlantic, United States
Little is known about Alpha's life prior to or as the outbreak began, except that she had a husband named Frank and a daughter named Lydia and that, based on her accent, she grew up or lived somewhere in or near the American south, possibly somewhere in Maryland. She appeared to be an abusive but protective mother to her daughter, once slapping her after she nearly suffocated herself to death after being tangled in a plastic tarp to ensure she would never do it again.
Alpha, along with Frank and Lydia, survived the initial stages of the outbreak. After 23 days, she and her family remained in a moldy basement with a group of survivors. Alpha was eager to leave, but her husband insisted that they stay. Alpha eventually cut her hair off to spite Frank, who liked her hair long, explaining that she could do whatever she wanted since it was the end of the world.
After 43 days, the undead began to overrun the outside of the building. A fellow survivor, Matias, started to have a panic attack and wanted to leave the basement. Alpha, knowing noise could draw them in, smothered Matias to death by crushing his windpipe, believing that he was too weak to survive this world. Later that night, unknown to the group about the virus infecting the living, a reanimated Matias began to attack the group. Alpha then attempted to lead her family to safety by escaping, but Frank tried to save their friends, which resulted in Alpha murdering him.
According to Lydia, her mother watched many survivor communities thrive and then eventually fall and she thus evolved into a more hardened survivor willing to resort to whatever measures necessary to survive. In the years that followed, Alpha would tell Lydia the reverse of events in the beginning, that Frank was the abusive one and she was the one trying to protect Lydia, that Matias killed her father and not Alpha herself.
For the next couple of years, Alpha and Lydia survived on their own by walking among the walkers using their blood to blend in. At some point, they were forced to seek shelter in an abandoned hospital and encountered a lone man wearing a mask. He reluctantly allowed them to stay one night but forbade them from entering his private quarters. Alpha and the man eventually formed a bond due to them sharing similar views about the new world though after she tried to see his face, he demanded her and her daughter to leave. Lydia however eventually trespassed on his side of the hospital forcing Alpha to follow her and ended up killing the man's zombified best friend to his fury. Alpha calmed him down and welcomed him to join them, also convincing him to skin his friend's face off, and wear it to continue hiding his identity (to which she and Lydia learned). The man accepted and also took his friend's shirt.
At some point following this, the three eventually formed a large group of survivors that would eventually become known as the "Whisperers", with Alpha being the group's leader, while the man took the name of "Beta" and became her second-in-command. Under their direction, they instructed their people to skin the walkers and wear their skin in order to mask their scents and move freely among herds in order to attack other survivor camps and settlements. The group members were also demanded to abandon their previous lives and beliefs and become nothing but hardened, primitive survivors. Despite her extreme methods of survival, Alpha was successful at keeping her people safe for years.
In the woods, Alpha pretends to be a walker before staring motionless at Alden and Luke. Suddenly, they find themselves surrounded by several Whisperers. Alpha approaches the two and throws them one of the arrows belonging to Yumiko that they have been following, having successfully led the two into a trap. She draws a shotgun and points it at them, saying, "Trail ends here."
Alpha leads a small group of Whisperers to Hilltop and makes her group stop at the gates. She introduces herself and claims that she only wants her daughter, Lydia, back.
Outside Hilltop, Alpha and the Whisperers wait for them to bring Lydia to her. Daryl asks them to leave and Alpha signals for more Whisperers to show up. Magna asks Alpha if they killed their people. Alpha says no and promises if they don't bring her Lydia there will be conflict. Daryl then decides to walk outside to talk to Alpha face to face.
Alpha instructs one of her people to bring someone as Daryl walks outside. He then informs Alpha he's ready to fight her people to ensure she doesn't get Lydia back, when he then spots one of the Whisperers with a baby. Alpha explains they're animals and "animals have babies." Suddenly, a couple of whisperers bring up a tied up Alden and Luke. Alpha offers to trade both of them for her daughter.
Meanwhile, a herd arrives and Alpha instructs her people to draw them away. Suddenly, a Whisperer's baby starts crying, which attracts the walkers over. Alpha shrugs at the mother, indicating she should leave the baby to die. Alden and Luke scream for them not to but Alpha explains it's natural selection. She then watches as Connie runs out of the cornfield, sling-shots a walker, and grabs it.
Later, Daryl goes outside and hands Lydia over to Alpha in exchange for Alden and Luke, who are embraced by Enid and Magna's group. Lydia apologizes to her mother and Alpha smacks her across the face, ordering her to address her as Alpha like everyone else. She then smiles at Daryl as they leave.
In the woods, Alpha questions Lydia about her time at Hilltop. She talks about their farmland, supplies, and weapons, but leaves out their dealings with other communities like The Kingdom. Alpha's disappointed over her lack of intel so Lydia asks if that's the only reason she came for her. "What a stupid question", Alpha says.
A while later, Alpha and the Whisperers stop in the woods to rest. unknown to her, Henry watches them from a close distance. Suddenly, Beta grabs Henry from behind and tosses him in front of Alpha. He says he's been tracking Henry for a while, but Henry's been tracking them for longer. Alpha questions him as Beta threatens to break his arm. Henry relents and reveals he came alone to get Lydia. She calls him stupid and punches him in the face. Alpha decides Henry's coming with them.
In the woods, Alpha asks Lydia why she didn't mention Henry, but she says he wasn't worth mentioning. Alpha reminds her that he just risked his life to save her, so she must be lying. They arrive at the camp, which is full of people without their walker masks. Alpha instructs Beta to tie Henry to a tree and to get Lydia a new mask.
Later, Alpha taunts Henry when two of her own approach her and question why they gave up two people for her daughter. "I don't like that math", Sean whispers. Alpha reminds them she did it to get information. Sean issues a challenge for her leadership role. Alpha laughs in his face and Beta grabs the man from behind and holds a long knife to his throat. "You're changing the rules again", he says calmly.
Alpha confirms he has the right to challenge her position, but she has the right to defend it. She then turns her attention to Helen and suggests it's actually her who wants to be the new leader. Helen tells Alpha she failed everyone by putting them in danger. Alpha tells her that her people voluntarily follow her because she keeps them safe. Alpha then wraps a wire around Helen's neck and decapitates her as Henry looks on in horror. Alpha then hands the head over to Sean, tells him crying is for the weak and stabs him in the stomach.
In her tent, Alpha tells Beta about the time before the apocalypse when she hit Lydia hard for almost suffocating in a dry-cleaning bag. She tells him that people do whatever it takes to protect those they love. "We need to be ready when they come for the boy", Beta says. They both agree Henry can be useful and they need to find out if Lydia truly has feelings for him.
At night, Beta takes Henry to Alpha. She makes Lydia pick up a knife and tells her to kill Henry with it to prove what side she's on. Lydia begins to cry as she approaches Henry. Alpha warns her not to be weak like her father and that if she doesn't kill him, Beta will kill them both. Suddenly, a small herd of walkers show up and begin eating the unmasked Whisperers. Alpha and the others quickly put on their masks to try to lure the herd away as chaos unfolds in the camp.
In the woods, Alpha ambushes a couple from Hilltop and kills them. She then proceeds to scalp Hilde to use her hair as a wig and her dress as a disguise to infiltrate the Kingdom's fair.
Later that day, in the Kingdom, Alpha walks around the fair in her disguise. She observes the trading booths, paints and people celebrating. Ezekiel notices her and introduces himself. She presents herself as Deborah from Alexandria and asks him to show her around. Somehow, Alpha is able to kidnap several residents and has them be taken away to a stable in the woods.
At night, Alpha sits down next to Lydia in the movie theater and quietly tells her not to say anything. Outside, she confronts Lydia about being a traitor but she tells her this is a better way of life. She then threatens to scream if she doesn't leave and Alpha tells her she was never one of them. Lydia breaks down in tears as Alpha leaves.
In the stable, Alpha arrives as the kidnapped residents try to fight back and proceeds to kill them all. However, she lets Siddiq live to warn the others and to try to divide the communities by scaring them. She then decapitates her victims and places their heads on pikes in the middle of a border, separating the Whisperer's land and the communities.
Later, in the woods, Alpha, now out of disguise, approaches Daryl and the group tied to a tree in the woods. She tells them she ran into trouble on the road as she wipes her bloody knife on her pants. Michonne warns her if she tries to get Lydia back they'll respond in force, but Alpha assures her Lydia isn't her concern anymore. She takes out a shotgun and declares that Michonne's group is in no position whatsoever to threaten her and that this habit needs to be broken. She tells Daryl to come with her alone.
At dawn, Alpha forces Daryl to the top of a cliff where a massive horde of walkers and Whisperers walk beneath them. Alpha says Daryl's communities are a joke and that her way of life is best for her people. She then tells him his friends at the camp are fine, but the next time his people cross into her land she'll release the horde into theirs. She clarifies she marked the border and Daryl asks if she killed Lydia. Alpha tells Daryl she didn't and doubts he can protect her. He tells her she's wrong and leaves.
In the camp, Beta asks Alpha about Lydia. "I want to be alone", Alpha orders him, but a Whisperer accidentally witnesses her crying. She stabs him in the neck, making sure no one sees her being weak.
Sometime following her attack on the communities, Alpha and the rest of the Whisperers move to a warmer state to avoid the harsh winter during the next months. In their camp, Beta tells Alpha "the time away has been good for the pack." Alpha reminds him she'll need to be strong for what comes next and Beta assures her she will be. He then whips her arm with a branch to make her strong, giving her very similar marks as what she did to Lydia.
Alpha is remembered in a post-traumatic flashback Siddiq has to the prisoners' last stand. She looks at Henry with an evil smile and then holds her bloody machete following the decapitations.
In the present, Daryl and Carol visit the spot where Alpha showed Daryl her massive herd, now gone. As the two begin to leave, Carol notices something in the trees below. Alpha emerges and wordlessly glares up at Carol.
In the past, Alpha and Lydia walk among walkers covered in blood when they come upon an injured woman being devoured. Alpha tries to mimic the walkers' behavior when Lydia drops her earmuffs and screams. They are forced to run and seek shelter inside an abandoned hospital, where they find a man wearing a ski mask.
In the present, Alpha and Beta talk about their enemies and the fear they possess on them. He says they should return so they won't forget about them, but Alpha questions his loyalty towards her decisions. Beta says he would never question her and is sent to collect walkers for their herd with the help of two sisters.
Back in the past, Alpha explains to the masked man that she and her daughter don't mean harm. He allows them to stay for the night. Later, Alpha cleans Lydia in a bathtub. Lydia is scared by the sound of walkers but Alpha insists she just listens to it. They look through supplies and eat. The masked man explains to Alpha that he doesn't want to hear her singing and that the sound of the dead is the only sound he never wants to end.
In the present, Alpha witnesses as Beta orders Frances to be killed and demands they leave her alone. Beta follows her and says she needs to punish Frances. Alpha angrily tells him to not question her and claims he would never understand what it feels to lose a child. She then orders him to send Frances to a tent where she will be waiting. In the past, Lydia tells Alpha that she wants to be like her. Alpha is thrilled by this but tells her to stop calling her mama. Back in the present, Alpha meets with Frances in a tent. She orders her to remove her mask and kneel. Alpha grabs Frances' head and prompts a scream heard throughout the camp, but ultimately pardons her.
In the past, Alpha walks around the hallways of the hospital and encounters some walkers. She starts killing them and is joined by the masked man. Afterward, he helps Alpha open the walkers' carcasses so she can use the blood later on. She jokingly decides to call him "B" and claims that makes her the "A". When she tries to see his face under the mask, he demands she leave at sunrise and not come back.
Back in the present the next day, Alpha leads a group of Whisperers to a field to gather more walkers. Suddenly, a satellite crashes through the sky and the herd starts to scatter. Frances witnesses a walker with a strapped baby carrier and starts having flashbacks to when she abandoned her son. She runs towards Alpha and jumps on her causing the herd to get riled up. The herd closes in and Frances is pulled off Alpha by her sister and thrown to the middle of the herd to be devoured.
At their camp, Alpha questions Frances' sister on whether or not she regrets letting her sister die. She confesses she will always be loyal to Alpha. Beta approaches and questions Alpha about why she is calm after losing three of their people and their herd. Alpha, however, claims she is proud of the woman. That night, Alpha anoints the woman a "Gamma" and the group praises her as Beta watches with jealousy from behind.
In the past, Alpha wakes up and looks for a missing Lydia around the hospital. She enters a room and finds photos of Beta with his face scratched out of all of them. Beta finds her and is mad that she wandered there. She then kills a walker wearing a smiley face t-shirt after it comes out another room. Beta loses it and starts wrecking the place. Lydia arrives and ultimately stops him from killing Alpha. He kneels by his friend's side as Alpha approaches him and declares "We are the end of the world." She lifts his mask to look at his face and chuckles, seemingly recognizing him. Beta doesn't want to leave his friend behind and she declares he won't have to, giving him a knife so he can peel his friend's face off.
In the present, Alpha is at a shrine she has made to Lydia and is followed by Beta. She breaks down and says she couldn't kill her daughter, before destroying the shrine. Alpha then pleads with him to keep Lydia's life a secret. He promises he will and informs her that the enemy has crossed the border. Alpha smiles and says they will return to teach them a lesson. Later, the Whisperers move around the woods with their herd as Alpha notices something in the distance. She wanders off and looks at Carol watching her from a distant cliff.
Alpha sends Gamma to inform Daryl and Michonne to meet her at the northern border to talk. That night, Alpha arrives with some Whisperers and reminds the group to stay off her land. Michonne explains the fire would have wiped out Oceanside and they only crossed one time, but Alpha reminds her of two other times they trespassed. Alpha declares that there will be no bloodshed, and instead announces she's moving the border up as punishment. Carol says they don't have to listen to her bullshit.
Daryl tries to get her to leave but Alpha says not until Carol lowers her eyes to her feet. Alpha tells Carol she should fear her but Carol says she feels nothing at all. Alpha reminds her how Henry feared her before she beheaded him, causing Carol to pull out her gun and shoot. Daryl manages to hit her arm so she misses as the Whisperers draw their weapons. Michonne apologizes to Alpha for Carol's behavior and Alpha says she forgives her "mother to mother." She then smiles evilly and orders the group to leave since they are in her land.
Alpha instructs Gamma to take a walker and use its guts to contaminate the river where the communities take their water from. At the camp, she teaches a Whisperer how to skin a walker when Gamma arrives from her mission to ask for another guardian. The Whisperer then demands that instead of using more walkers for slower strategies, they should release their herd on the communities. Alpha allows the group to vote but nobody agrees with him. She then cuts the Whisperer on his arm and leg and hands the knife to Beta to kill him and be used as a new guardian.
Later that day, Gamma confesses to Alpha that Aaron gave her gauze for her wound. Alpha shushes her and instructs her to sit, before removing Gamma's mask. They discuss sacrifices and Gamma tells her that her sacrifice was much greater, in reference to Lydia. Alpha says Aaron might be useful for her plans and they might have to wear a new mask.
Alpha is informed by Beta about a captured Negan who was found trespassing in her border. She argues with Beta that Negan should be tested to see if he is worthy to talk with her. When he objects, Alpha notes that Beta has been questioning her rather often lately and asks if he is finally challenging her. Beta kneels in submission and vows that he will never challenge her. Alpha forgives him and then orders him to test Negan for the rest of the day.
Later that night, Alpha watches as Negan is thrown to the ground after asking for food. She notices as he obeys and sits somewhere else. After a while, Alpha has Beta take Negan to walk among one of their herds in the woods as part of his final task. The next morning, Alpha is informed by Beta that Negan died because he was weak but is suddenly left in shock when a blood-covered Negan arrives back and kneels to introduce himself to Alpha. "I'm all in, whatever you want, whatever I got, it's yours", Negan tells her. Alpha leans down to sniff him and shushes him to signal she approves.
Alpha will appear in this episode.
This list shows the victims Alpha has killed:
- Matias (Alive)
- Rose (Indirectly Caused)
- Beta's Best Friend (Zombified)
- Hilde (Caused or Direct)
- Miles (Caused or Direct)
- Martin (Caused or Direct, Alive)
- Casper (Caused or Direct, Alive)
- Ozzy (Alive, Off-Screen)
- Alek (Alive, Off-Screen)
- D.J. (Alive, Off-Screen)
- Frankie (Alive, Off-Screen)
- Tammy Rose Sutton (Alive, Off-Screen)
- Rodney (Alive, Off-Screen)
- Adeline (Alive, Off-Screen)
- Enid (Alive, Off-Screen)
- Tara Chambler (Alive, Off-Screen)
- Henry (Alive, Off-Screen)
- Frances (Indirectly Caused)
- 6 horses (Caused or Direct)
- A few unnamed shelter refugees (Indirectly Caused)
- 2 unnamed Whisperers (1 Direct, 1 Caused)
- 4 unnamed campers (Possibly, Caused or Direct)
- Numerous counts of zombies and unnamed people
- "Lines We Cross" (No Lines)
- "We Are the End of the World"
- "What It Always Is"
- "Open Your Eyes"
- "Alpha" is the fifth major recurring primary antagonist in the TV Series, the first being Shane Walsh, the second being The Governor, the third being Gareth and the fourth being Negan.
- "Alpha" is the first major recurring primary antagonist in the TV Series to be female.
- "Alpha" is also the second female character to be classified as a primary antagonist, with the first being Dawn Lerner.
- "Alpha" is one of two major recurring primary antagonists confirmed to have a living relative (her daughter Lydia), the other being Shane Walsh who also has a living relative.
- "Alpha" is the second major recurring primary antagonist to interact with another major recurring primary antagonist; Negan.
- "Alpha" is currently the only major recurring primary antagonist whose real name is not known.
- "Alpha" is the first major recurring primary antagonist in the TV Series to be female.
- "Alpha" currently holds the highest kill count of any female antagonist on The Walking Dead.
- Alpha is the second main antagonist to kill more than one main character in one episode (Enid and Tara Chambler), with the first being Negan.
- It's possible that her name is Deborah as that is the name she used while she infiltrated the Kingdom, although she could have also just randomly chosen the name in order to stay undercover.
- The term "Alpha" denotes the dominant role or position in a particular sphere or group.
- She is one of three people known to have seen Beta's face.