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"You'd do anything to protect your family. So would I."
—Leah to Daryl, declaring her loyalty to the Reapers.[src]

Leah Shaw is a main character and later an antagonist, as well as a survivor of the outbreak in AMC's The Walking Dead. She is a high-ranking member of Reapers, serving as Pope's right-hand woman and the group's second-in-command. After his death, Leah took control of the remaining Reapers. She serves as the secondary antagonist for the first part, and the primary antagonist for the second part of Season 11.

Pre-Apocalypse

Afghanistan

Not much is known about Leah's life prior to or as the outbreak began, except that she grew up in a dysfunctional family. As an adult, she joined a branch of the U.S. military and was fighting in Afghanistan along with the rest of her squad which included a lot of members that would eventually become the Reapers. Upon returning from war, she struggled to find jobs or deal with trauma, but the relationship between her and her comrades remained strong, especially the one between her and Michael Turner. She then decided to become a mercenary. She also adopted a boy named Matthew after his mother died in childbirth.

Post-Apocalypse

Rural Virginia

Sometime after the outbreak, she met up with her squad and they survived for a year together until one day their camp was overrun. Leah took Matthew and Dog's mother and fled the camp. She would later find out that he was bitten and put him out of his misery. The same day Matthew died, Dog was born.

Season 10

"Find Me"

Daryl stumbles upon some iron spikes protruding from a tree. Soon enough, Dog runs from out of the trees and beckons Daryl to follow him. The canine brings him to a nearby cabin. He busts inside an kills a walker, but is soon ambushed by a woman, who holds him at gunpoint. The woman asks for his name. Daryl attempts to leave, but the woman prevents him from doing so. Daryl sits tied up inside the cabin, as the woman drags the walker corpse outside. Daryl fiddles with his ropes, but is stopped by the woman. Daryl asks if she's going to kill him. She asks if she should, and believes Daryl doesn't want to die. Daryl spits back that she doesn't know anything about him, which she acknowledges, so asks for his name again, and why he is trespassing on her land. Daryl introduces himself and says that he was just trying to help, but Leah snarks that he is tied up with a shotgun pointed at his head, and rhetorically asks what kind of help could he possibly offer her. After a tense moment of silence, the woman decides to cut Daryl loose. Before he leaves, Daryl asks if she's going to tell him her name, but she tells him "no".

Six months later, Daryl is sitting at his shelter when he is startled by Dog. He takes Dog back to the cabin, where the woman thanks him for bringing her pet back. Since the woman still refuses to introduce herself, Daryl asks for the dog's name, but the woman simply calls him "Dog". The woman takes note of Daryl's scar, and says that living out in the wild isn't for everyone. Daryl supposes the lifestyle will catch up to all of them, but the woman replies that this will happen only if they let it. With that, Daryl takes his leave, and the woman tells him to be careful.

Eight months after this, Daryl is gathering some wood when he is ambushed by a group of walkers. He takes out a couple, but starts to retreat when he notices there are too many. Suddenly, the woman arrives to assist him and signals Daryl to follow her. They hide together and wait for the walkers to pass by. Once the threat has subsided, Daryl sternly tells the woman to stay away from his camp. Offended, the woman introduces herself as Leah as she leaves.

Three months after their encounter, Daryl arrives to the cabin and tosses a fish to Leah's doorstep. Sometime after Daryl returns to camp, Leah tosses the fish back at him, and says that she can catch her own. Daryl says that he was trying to be nice, but Leah asserts that she doesn't need him to be nice and just wants to be left alone. Daryl bitterly promises he won't bother her again, and Leah replies that she won't visit him either anymore. Noticing that she is still lingering, Daryl says that he understands why she lives out in the woods by herself. Leah guesses that Daryl has been alone for a long time, too, which he affirms. Leah asks if Daryl has frostnip, but he brushes it off. Nonetheless, she invites him to spend the night at her cabin to get warm. Later that night, Daryl is woken to the sound of broken glass. He finds Leah picking up a broken picture frame. Leah explains that today is the birthday of the boy from the picture. She recounts how she didn't have a good family growing up, so she had to find her own. She found that with her squad, with whom she fought side-by-side. When the world ended, they swore they would stay together.

The squad, she says, gave her hope, and she tried to give the same to her son, Matthew. She tearfully admits that Matthew wasn't her biological son, but she adopted him after her close friend died giving birth to him. Tearfully, Leah laments that it doesn't matter, as Matthew is gone. She walks over to a window and looks over Matthew's grave. She continues her story, recounting how she was with Matthew and Dog's mother (who was pregnant) when the dead surrounded them. Leah was separated from her squad, and ran to the cabin with Matthew. It was only then that she noticed that Matthew was bitten. Matthew died the same day Dog was born, which was the last time she saw another living person until Daryl. Leah asks him who he lost, so Daryl tells her it was his brother, who was lost in an accident but his body was never found. Leah asks if Daryl still thinks his brother is still alive, but he doesn't know, though promises to never stop looking until he finds out.

In the following ten months, Daryl and Leah spend a lot of time together, and even become romantically involved. Over time, however, Leah becomes increasingly frustrated with Daryl periodically leaving to look for Rick. One day, when Daryl reveals that he will be gone for a few days, Leah reaches her breaking point and asks Daryl where he belongs, whether it's by the river looking for his dead brother, with the family he left, or with her. Daryl claims he doesn't know, but Leah thinks he does, and tells him to choose. When Daryl comes back to the cabin, however, he finds it trashed and Leah missing, along with Matthew's picture. Dog, however, is still present, and soon joins Daryl. Daryl writes Leah a message saying "I belong with you. FIND ME.", and places it in a wooden box Leah kept under the floorboards, along with a few cans of food. He then leaves with Dog, telling his pet not to worry, as he is certain they will get Leah back.

When Daryl returns to the cabin in the present with Carol and Dog, he finds it still abandoned and no sign that Leah has ever returned.

Season 11

"Acheron: Part II"

Leah is one of the Reapers that ambushes Daryl, Maggie, Alden, Roy, Negan, Duncan, Frost, Cole, Agatha and Elijah on the road.

"Hunted"

Leah takes part in the fight with Maggie's group which ends with everybody scattered or dead.

"Rendition"

Leah is seen when Daryl comes across Dog, who is sitting next to a masked Reaper cloaked in black. Daryl orders the Reaper to release his pet, at which point the Reaper takes her mask off and reveals herself to be Leah. She is surprised to see Daryl again, and asks if he is alone. When Daryl confirms he is, Leah says that she saw him on the road with the others. She asks Daryl about them, this time holding him at gunpoint. Daryl claims this was a group he met on the road, but insists he isn't one of them. He attempts to deescalate the situation by leaving, and calls Dog back to him. When Dog doesn't go to him, Leah jokes that she always thought Dog liked Daryl better. Daryl says that, whatever the Reapers' problem is with the group, he's not a part of it. He tries to leave again, but a group of Reapers surround Daryl, and he is taken to Meridian with a bag over his head.

Alone in a call with him, Daryl lets Leah know he did, in fact, come back and looked everywhere for her, adding that he is sorry she ended up with the Reapers. Leah asserts that the Reapers are her family. They, Leah says, never stopped looking for her and, when they found her, she came home. Leah than asks if the people on the road were Daryl's family, but he claims his people were wiped out in a conflict with another group, and insists he is alone. Considering Daryl's claims, she decides to clean him, but then smothers him with a rag until he is unconscious. When he wakes up, Daryl is waterboarded by two Reapers under Leah's supervision. One of the Reapers, Carver, interrogates Daryl about the others, but Daryl sticks to his story and claims he doesn't know. Eventually, Leah decides to stop the interrogation, despite Carver's protests. Leah implores Daryl to talk, as their leader won't be so nice when he interrogates him. Daryl clarifies that he merely traded with the group by transporting their supplies in exchange for food, and claims he knew the group for less than a week. Leah is unconvinced, and Daryl is taken back to his cell.

Sometime later, Leah visits Daryl and chastises him for being stubborn and lying. Daryl swears he has never lied to her, and that he is not about to start. Leah again asks him about the group, but Daryl maintains he doesn't know anything about them, and insists that he'd help her if he could. He asks to be released along with Dog, and promises that she'll never see him again. Leah asks if that's what he wants, but their conversation is interrupted by a pair of Reapers dragging a badly-beaten Frost to his cell. When Leah inquires what the commotion is about, Carver informs her they found Bossie. When Leah asks about Turner, Carver takes her down the hall, where she witnesses Bossie weeping over his failure to save Turner. Nearby, Turner lies dead, with Mancea preforming a sermon for him. Saddened, Leah preforms a small prayer for Turner. Clearly distraught, Pope proclaims that God is angry and so is he, and orders the Reapers to make the group they're hunting "feel their wrath."

Leah goes back to Daryl's cell and tells him that one of her brothers is dead. Michael Turner, she professes, was like the little brother she never had, and this was the first time she lost someone close to her in years since she lost Daryl. Daryl interjects that she didn't lose him, as he did come back for her, but she was gone. Leah protests that Daryl is the one who left in the first place, to which he admits that he was scared of letting go. After sitting in silence for a moment, Leah asserts that it doesn't matter, as their relationship wouldn't have worked out anyway in a world like this. Daryl wonders if this is her opinion or her family's. Leah snaps that Daryl has no right to judge them based on the things he has done himself, and claims that this is, and always was, who she really is. Daryl, however, doesn't believe her. Leah says that she can help Daryl save himself, and maintains she still cares about him despite everything. This is why, she warns, he needs to tell her something, or she won't be able to control what Pope will do, as her commander is angry about Turner and wants someone to pay. Finally, Daryl admits that the group was led by a "woman," with her lieutenants being "a tall, skinny guy who never shuts up" and a "priest who carries a shotgun." He also warns Leah that the group outnumbers the Reapers, with at least three dozen fighters. Grateful for the information, Leah promises to get Daryl out of his cell. Before she leaves, Daryl asks when he gets to meet Pope, to which Leah assures him it will be soon.

Leah goes to see Pope and conveys what Daryl told her. Furthermore, she suggests they recruit Daryl. She is frustrated when Pope ignores her, and demands a response. Pope calmly replies that not everything is about her, and blames her for losing a day of tracking so Leah could interrogate her "old boyfriend." After a moment of silence, Pope asks Leah about Daryl, to which she says that Daryl would be a good fit for their group due to being fearless. Pope, however, is skeptical, and thinks Daryl just wants to be with Leah. He then wonders why Leah didn't kill Daryl when she had the chance. Leah confesses that Daryl meant something to her at one point, but claims she severed all ties when she rejoined the Reapers, and doesn't regret her decision. Pope confides that he trusts Leah more than any of the other Reapers, and asks if she thinks they can trust Daryl. When she says yes, Pope is pleased, intends on finding out for himself.

in the interrogation room, Leah unties Daryl and says that Pope is on his way, and instructs Daryl to follow her lead. Hearing a thump on the other side of the door, Leah goes to open it, but finds it locked. She then notices liquid leaking from underneath the door, and jumps away just as it is set on fire. With the cabin in flames, Leah and Daryl scramble to find a way out. Leah is soon incapacitated by the smoke, leaving Daryl to find something to pry the windows open. Leah finds the waterboarding table, which Daryl then breaks and uses one of the legs to pry the bars off the windows. He helps Leah climb out, before evacuating himself. Outside, they find that Pope and the other Reapers watching them. Daryl is deemed "forged by fire, ordained by God" by Pope, who welcomes him into their ranks.

Leah is seen at a bonfire, where the Reapers are eating dinner. Pope then praises Bossie for carrying his fallen comrade for ten miles on his back, to which Bossie exclaims that he just did what any of them would have done. After inquiring about Bossie's wounds, Pope notes that the wounds are on his back. Despite Leah trying to calm him, Pope once again asks where Bossie was when Turner was being attacked and accuses him of abandoning Turner despite his story stating that he refused to leave his brother behind. Pope then adds that God doesn't just use fire as his baptism, but also his wrath. As a result, Pope chooses to execute him in front of the other Reapers.

"On the Inside"

Leah is sent by Pope to scout the location, Arbor Hills, after gaining that information from Frost, with a crew of Reapers to capture Maggie's group. Leah, Daryl, Carver and a crew of Reapers approach the supply depot. The Reapers burst into the supply depot and search the house. No one is there. Leah orders them to search the entire town.

The Reapers search another house. Leah finds some wet, bloody bandages, indicating someone was recently there. Daryl notices a trap door under a rug and quietly slides the rug over the door. He offers to track Maggie's group outside. Carver suspects something and quarrels with Daryl. Leah tells them to stop arguing and sends Carver upstairs to sweep the rooms one more time and warns Daryl not to anger Carver.

Daryl and Carver argue. Daryl criticizes the Reapers' plan of attack and slyly incorporates intel about the Reapers as he talks, knowing that Maggie's group is listening. Carver accuses Daryl of being disloyal. Daryl admits that the only reason he joined the Reapers is because he cares about Leah, but says he will follow Pope out of fear. Carver notices the trap door and opens it. The basement is empty.

The Reapers return to Meridian. Carver tells Pope that Maggie's group got away. Pope reveals that he continued to interrogate Frost after they left and got all the information he needed. They see Frost tied to a post: he is now a walker. Pope brings Carver inside Meridian and laughs with him about something. Leah looks at Daryl, leaving both wondering what it means.

"Promises Broken"

Leah witness Pope screaming at the Reapers for failing to find Maggie and her people. Leah admonishes Pope for yelling at his soldiers and takes the blame for them. Pope tells Leah to do another sweep with Daryl. Daryl and Leah search the outskirts of Meridian. Daryl commends Leah for standing up for her crew. Leah defends Pope's behavior and says he is like a father to her.

Daryl begins asking Leah about the Reapers' history and why they're after Maggie's group; Leah says they took Meridian, justifying it since they needed a place to stay, and that they are only hunting Maggie so she doesn't try to take revenge. Leah confides in Daryl that she sees Pope as a father figure and that his recent behavior is unusual, but Daryl is privately unconvinced.

The two come across a lone survivor, who promises that he's alone and is looking for supplies for his sick wife. Leah asks Pope what to do with him over the radio, and Pope orders them to kill him and his family. The survivor leads Leah and Daryl to his hideout, where his sick wife and son are. Leah tells the man to leave with his son and never return, and he obliges as Daryl kills his wife out of mercy. Leah tells Daryl she will tell Pope he killed the family to improve his standing. Daryl tries to tell Leah something, but they are ordered to immediately return to Meridian.

"For Blood"

Leah, Daryl, and Pope watch the horde from the top of Meridian's perimeter wall. Leah observes the horde is moving in a peculiar pattern. Daryl offers to lead the horde away from Meridian. Pope adopts Daryl's strategy, but sends Wells instead. When the Reapers stop hearing back from Paul over the radio, Leah insists on helping Wells, but Pope says he's already dead. Leah realizes Pope dispatched Wells as bait to confirm his hunch that Maggie is controlling the horde. Leah reminds Pope that Wells was part of their family, but Pope says it was Wells' fate to die.

The horde continues to trip the mines outside Meridian. Leah laments all the people they've lost, but Pope reasons that every war has its sacrifices. Daryl joins Leah and Ancheta on a rooftop overlooking the community. Daryl quietly asks Leah if she still believes in Pope. Leah admits that it's hard to watch Pope hurt the people that she cares about. He invites her to abandon the Reapers and run away together. When she refuses, Daryl confesses to Leah that he is with Maggie's group, and that they were hiding among the dead to lead the horde to Meridian. Daryl reveals that the enemies they're fighting are in fact his friends and that they're leading the horde to take back Meridian. He begs Leah not to kill them and asks for her help to stop Pope. Despite feeling hurt and betrayed, Leah keeps his secret from Pope when he arrives on the rooftop.

Pope orders Ancheta to launch the hwacha. Leah says the hwacha will end up killing their own people, but Pope reasons that it's their time to die. Ancheta lights the fuse. Daryl unsheathes his knives to attack Pope. Leah stabs Pope in the neck. Daryl hurls a knife into Ancheta and puts out the fuse. Pope crawls on the ground. Leah stabs him once more, killing him. Daryl reaches out his hand to escape with Leah, but she instead radios everyone that Daryl killed Pope and is with the enemy. She tells Daryl that she would do anything to protect her family. Daryl escapes moments before Carver and Boone arrive. Leah instructs them to close the gate and kill everything inside the walls.

Leah radios the Reapers with orders to pull back. After the courtyard is cleared of Reapers, she launches rockets at Maggie's group below.

Killed Victims

This list shows the victims Leah has killed:

  • Matthew Shaw (Before Reanimation or Zombified)
  • Teresa (Possibly)
  • Pope
  • Numerous counts of enemy combatants (Pre-Apocalypse)
  • Possibly some unnamed contracted victims (Pre-Apocalypse)
  • Possibly some unnamed Wardens
  • Numerous counts of zombies and unnamed people

Appearances

Episodes 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24
Season 1
Season 2
Season 3
Season 4
Season 5
Season 6
Season 7
Season 8
Season 9
Season 10
Season 11
Appears Voice is heard
👁 Appears with no lines Appears in a flashback
Appears as a walker 🖼 Appears in a photograph/video
Appears as a corpse Appears in a hallucination/dream

Trivia

  • Leah is the sixth and final major recurring primary antagonist in the TV Series, the first being Shane Walsh, the second being The Governor, the third being Gareth, the fourth being Negan Smith, and the fifth being Alpha.
    • Leah is the second major recurring primary antagonist in the TV Series to be female, with the first being Alpha.
      • Leah is also the third female character to be classified as a season's primary antagonist, with the first being Dawn Lerner, and the second being Alpha.
    • Leah is the second major recurring primary antagonist who is part of the main cast but is listed under "Also Starring", with the first being Gareth.
    • Additionally, Leah is currently the only major recurring primary antagonist who was also the major recurring secondary antagonist.
  • Leah is also the fourth and final major recurring secondary antagonist in the TV Series, with the first being Merle Dixon, the second being Simon, and the third being Beta.
    • Leah is the second major recurring secondary antagonist who is part of the main cast but is listed under "Also Starring", with the first being Simon.
    • Leah is currently the only major recurring secondary antagonist who killed a primary antagonist; Pope.
    • Additionally, Leah is currently the only major recurring secondary antagonist who later became a major recurring primary antagonist.
  • Leah is the second main character in the series to be introduced in a flashback. The first being Tara Chambler.
  • Leah is the seventh main character to later become an antagonist. The first being Shane Walsh, the second being Dwight, the third being Spencer Monroe, the fourth being Eugene Porter, the fifth being Anne, and the sixth being Gregory.

Other Actresses

International Dubbers
Language Dubber Other Characters Voiced
Czech Jitka Moučková Clara
Ana
French Anne-Sophie Nallino Arat
Frankie (8-9)
German N/A N/A
Hungarian N/A N/A
Italian N/A N/A
Japanese N/A N/A
Portuguese N/A N/A
Spanish (Latin America) N/A N/A
Spanish (Spain) N/A N/A
TV Series Characters
Grimes Family JudithR.J.RickCarlLori
King County LambertPaulaShaneLeonMr. SiggardMrs. Siggard
Jones Family MorganJennyDuane
Atlanta Camp CarolDarylMoralesGlennAndreaMerleTheodoreDaleSophiaJacquiMirandaLouisElizaAmyEdJim
Nursing Home MiguelFelipeJorgeGuillermoMr. Gilbert
Center for Disease Control EdwinCandace
Military Personnel WellesWilsonBradySeanFranklinCoxCallaway
Greene Family Farm MaggieBethHershelPatriciaJimmyAnnetteShawnArnoldOtisJosephine
The Living NateRandallSeanTonyDave
Michonne's Group MichonneMikeTerryAndre
The Prison AxelOscarAndrewTomasBig Tiny
Woodbury JeanettePhilipMrs. RichardsMs. McLeodMartinezShumpertMr. JacobsonKarenMr. RichardsOwenErynGregMiltonDr. StevensRowanEileenMrs. FosterBettyEmilyNoahPaulJodyRichardHaleyPennyWarrenMichaelGargulioCrowleyTim
Tyreese's Group SashaTyreeseAllenBenDonna
Prison Newcomers LukeMollyBobLizzieMikaJulioHenryNorisCalebDavidRyanCharliePatrickChloeZach
Chambler Family TaraLillyMeghanDavid
Martinez's Group HowardMitchAlishaPete
Ford Family AbrahamEllenA.J.Becca
Post-Prison Survivors EugeneRositaGabriel
The Claimers DanBillyHarleyTonyJoeLenLou
Terminus MartinGregTheresaGarethAlbertMikeMaryAlex
Grady Memorial Hospital StevenTanakaAlvaradoAmandaBelloLicariPercyMcGinleyFrancoNoahDawnO'DonnellBobJeffriesGormanJoanGavinHanson
Alexandria Safe-Zone AaronBarbaraScottKyleSocorroVincentHeathNoraMrs. RobinsonAlexJenWayneCherylEnidRussBobBruceTobinAnnaMikeyFrancineKent SpencerOliviaDeniseDeannaLucyRonJessieSamMayaDavidBetsyNicholasAnnieWillTommySturgessBarnesNatalieStacyMichaelJefferyRichardsHollySamanthaBobbyCharlyneO'HaraDineshDanErinAdrianParkShellyCarterPeteRegAidenEric
The Wolves OwenAphid
The Saviors NeganGracieSherryDwightAmberTanyaGinaQuanAldenPotterJoséBrookeMelJohnMarcusJonahAliceLauraBrandonFrankieD.J.RichieRegina JedNorrisArat JustinSimonDukeLanceGaryReillyJaredEvanKatyKenoDerekDeanGavinGomezPaulieDukeMarkZiaLeoYagoJoeyGuntherRudyToddDinoHuckWadeCamNelsonMaraGordonRoyDavidEmmettIsabelleJosephChrisGeorgeNeilRomanJiroMilesPrimoPaulaMichelleMollyDonnieGabeTimmyTina
Hilltop Colony BertieMarcoHershelKalEduardoBriannaTroyRoyGageOscarEarlPennyFelixAdelineRodneyTammy RoseCasperMartinMilesHildePaulGregoryKennethStephanieCraigCrystalWesleyHarlanNeilFreddieAndyEthan
The Kingdom EzekielJerryDianneNabilaEzraAliyahMariamJoshuaJennyWilliamHenryDanaKevinKurtAlvaroDanielColtonRichardBenjamin
Oceanside CyndieRachelJulesBeatriceKathyNatania
The Scavengers AnneTamielBrionFarronWinslow
Georgie's Group HildaMidgeGeorgie
Magna's Group MagnaLukeConnieKellyYumikoBernie
The Whisperers LydiaAdamKeithBetaAlphaRufusMaryDanteFrancesZionRasmusSeanHelen
Baltimore CyrusAmandaLamarFrankRoseMatias
The Highwaymen AlfredMargoAlekOzzy
Jocelyn's Group WinnieP.J.GinaLinusMitchellJocelyn
Bloodsworth Island VirgilLucyCelesteJeremiahLisa
The Wardens ElijahTeresaAgathaDuncanColeMayaAinsleyGusBillyJenFrost
The Reapers LeahFisherWashingtonBooneAustinBrandonManceaPopeDeaverAnchetaPowellPaulBossieMichaelNichollsMontanioMatthew
Mays Family Mr. MaysMaysMrs. Mays
The Commonwealth StephanieLivitsGarciaClarkEvansMercerSorsensenZellVazquezStephanieLanceElaineCharlesTomichiKaseyJohnKaylaSebastianMarcusPamela
Valak's Vipers Craven
Miscellaneous Survivors JuanitaWilhelmAidenBaileyFranklinTomJesseSiddiqMiloAmeliaLeslieEastmanSamChristopherAnaLucilleMrs. BlakeClara
Animals DogNellyShivaTabithaButtonsDukeFlameVioletHunter
Walkers CarlaDellyJoe Sr.BillTonyNickErinDougLouiseWayneSummerHannahEddie
Alive characters appear in green. Unknown characters appear in blue. Dead characters appear in red and italics. Undead characters appear in gray and italics.
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