- "You think I can't see what is happening here?! You think your governor is blind to the plots you've been hatching behind my back?! [...] You lied to me, Rick Grimes. You pretended to help me--to get me out of harm's way! You were really getting me out so you could bring your army into the Commonwealth. You were conspiring with Mercer the whole time! [...] Lies! I'm not falling for your bullshit anymore! [...] You stand with your army and claim you want to talk?! The army of Greenville stands with me--and we won't stand for your deception. For the people of the Commonwealth--for our future--ATTACK!!"
- —Pamela confronting Rick, shortly before ordering her forces to attack.[src]
Pamela Milton is a character and a former antagonist first encountered in Issue 176 of Image Comics' The Walking Dead. She is the Governor of the Commonwealth, and serves as the primary antagonist of Volume 32.
Pamela is a smart and capable leader. She strongly believes in world order and the structure of civilization. While not as self-entitled as her son, Pamela believes that her life in high society life status before the apocalypse make her above everyone else. She believes in social status as a ladder, that the 'working class' have something to look up to.
Pamela later reveals herself to be quite paranoid, as she assumes Rick betrayed her when she sees the Militia standing behind him, despite the fact that Rick had saved her life twice prior to that point.
Nothing is known about Pamela's life prior to or as the outbreak began, other than she was a politician. She may have lived in or near Ohio with her husband, son, and daughter.
During the course of the apocalypse, Pamela lost both her husband and daughter and would travel with her son Sebastian to a community that would soon become known as "The Commonwealth"; eventually, Pamela would be elected as the leader some time after her arrival. One of her initial acts was to enlist Mercer, a high-ranked officer in the Commonwealth's army, as her son's bodyguard. One day, Pamela gets word that one of the Commonwealth's radio operators, Stephanie, has made contact with an individual named Eugene who is part of a community known as Alexandria. While she has Stephanie punished for doing so without authorization, Pamela nevertheless has a group of soldiers meet up with the visitors. She has the Commonwealth's bookkeeper Lance go with the soldiers and bring them to the Commonwealth. Once they arrive, Pamela has the leader of the group, Michonne, meet with her in private. Hearing that she was a lawyer, Pamela is thrilled to hear that and allows her to become a lawyer within the Commonwealth. After hearing Michonne refer to her daughter Elodie possibly living within the Commonwealth, Pamela recalls someone by that name working at a bakery in town and personally escorts her there, reuniting Michonne with her daughter.
When prompted by Eugene and the others who arrived with Michonne about where she is, Pamela explains that Michonne is with her daughter and will need some time. Just then, Sebastian comes in and berates to his mother about Mercer's actions earlier that day while protecting him. While Pamela admonishes Sebastian, she tells Mercer to leave, promising to discuss it later. After some time passes, Pamela decides to have the group travel to an area nearby called The Whitmore and leaves to make preparations. While this occurs, she hears from the Alexandrians about their leader Rick Grimes; believing him to be in charge of a community close to the size of the Commonwealth, Pamela decides to travel to Alexandria with the group (minus Michonne, who is staying behind with her daughter) and meet Rick in person. As the group leaves, she elects Lance to be in charge while she is gone and orders Sebastian to behave himself. While travelling, she calls Mercer aside and asks him his thoughts about the new survivors; upon arriving closer to Alexandria, Pamela voices her disappointment, calling the settlement and the surrounding area "a shithole". She continues to harbor some skepticism once Rick finally arrives outside, but soon sees him as a fully capable individual. He offers to give Pamela a tour of the community, which she accepts. During the course of the tour, Pamela has a disagreement with Rick on how each community has a different foundation and means of operation, with Pamela voicing that class systems still work while Rick believes survivors need to earn their place in the new world.
As Pamela is taken to the communities of Oceanside, The Sanctuary and The Kingdom, she becomes more impressed with the trading network Rick established between them and Alexandria. During a stop to the Hilltop, Pamela is surprised by the harsh reception of the Hilltop's leader, Maggie Greene who makes it clear she is skeptical and does not trust the Commonwealth. Despite this, Pamela is greatly impressed with what Rick has managed to accomplish and sees him as a potentially valuable ally; she offers to return the favor and invites Rick to come visit the Commonwealth. They arrive as a riot takes place due to the public's response of several officers in the Commonwealth army attacking a citizen. Pamela angrily reprimands Lance for not being in control of the situation and is ready to demote him; as this happens, Pamela is shocked to see Rick helping with cleanup efforts. She is somewhat dismayed by his actions, seeing it was beneath someone of high status to do such menial labor; however, to save face, she goes to help assist as well. When she tries to get Sebastian to help also, he angrily rejects the offer and leaves.
She reprimands Lance once again for letting a riot occur while she was gone and decides that the Commonwealth needs a reminder that she and the other elites are the ones protecting them; thus, she orders Lance to double patrols to prevent future riots in the Commonwealth when she is notified that Rick wishes to speak with her.
Later, Pamela takes Rick along with a few other Alexandrians on a "hunt" but only ends up shooting one walker in the shoulder before instructing Mercer and his officers to deal with the rest. Pamela is later invited by Michonne to speak with Rick and Dwight, the leader of the Militia. After hearing Dwight voice his agreement with several officers that Pamela should be overthrown, she arrives with two guards and orders Dwight to leave. She is shocked when Dwight pulls a gun on her, claiming that she is addicted to power and should be forced to give up her position or be killed. Before anyone can react, Rick shoots Dwight in the head, saving Pamela's life.
Pamela organizes the Commonwealth and admits that tensions have been high, but is working to find a solution so incidents like the riot don't happen again; she asks Rick to speak on her behalf and is relieved to hear him partially echo her sentiments. Remembering Dwight mentioned several members of the Commonwealth officers are dissatisfied with her methods, including Mercer, Pamela has Lance arrest Mercer for treason. She later visits Mercer and states how disappointed she is with him. She is stunned by Mercer's accusations of him being a gloried errand boy for her and Sebastian and how she does not appreciate everything him and the other officers do; she merely responds Mercer is where he belongs before quickly leaving. Soon after, Rick learns that Mercer has been broken out of jail and rushes to Pamela, telling her to leave for her safety; when Sebastian incredulously does not believe him, Pamela sides with Rick and tells him they must go. Rick leads them out of the center of the Commonwealth and asks Paul to escort Pamela, Maxwell and Sebastian to Greenville.
Pamela eventually begins to have second thoughts about Rick and after a near catastrophic herd invasion is dealt with by the combined efforts of the Militia and the Commonwealth army, she returns with an army of supporters from Greenville. Pamela denounces him as a co-conspirator with Mercer and orders her army to attack the Commonwealth soldiers and the Militia.
This list shows the victims Pamela has killed:
As mother and son Pamela and Sebastian have a rather rough relationship. While it is assumed she loves him as her child, however because of her high power of authority she has spoiled him in which he uses her to get away with harassing people and guards. She has been seen neglecting disciplining him when he needed it. When she took part in helping with cleaning up the streets, he is shown to look down on her for helping the people out.
Pamela and Maxwell have a good relationship. Maxwell acts has her personal assistant and they are often seen together.
Pamela and Mercer initially seemed to have a stable relationship as he acts as her personal protector and in charge of the army of the Commonwealth. However, it seems they have started to be at odds with each other with Mercer even telling Rick he should be in charge of the Commonwealth. Once it is revealed that Mercer sided with rebels wishing to overthrow Pamela, their relationship has been completely severed.
Both Pamela and Rick have mutual respect for each other has leaders of their own community. However they do not share similar ideals for how their own community, or civilization should be run. This potentially could cause problems in their relationship in the future. Pamela does gain a lot of respect and admiration for Rick when he saves her life from Dwight.
However in Issue 190 she breaks off all ties with him when she convinces herself that he is the one staging the coup against her and wishes to take over the Commonwealth.
Pamela and Maggie don't have a good relationship. When they first meet, Maggie is unsure of Pamela's intentions and doesn't trust her. Maggie is very skeptical about the Commonwealth, but she agrees to Rick traveling and agrees to the alliance provided Rick likes what he sees.
Dwight and Pamela have a negative relationship right from the start, since Dwight confronted her with the Militia at his back. Dwight's feelings towards her only get worse when he visits the Commonwealth with Rick, as Dwight sees Pamela as the embodiment of everything that's wrong with the community. He eventually resorts to holding her at gunpoint and probably would have killed her if not for Rick's intervention. Dwight likens her to Negan, seeing them both as power-hungry tyrants.
While the two have not been seen interacting as of yet, Pamela trusts Cloris enough to seek refuge in Greenville in the midst of a coup.
- Pamela is the second politician encountered in the Comic Series, with Douglas Monroe being the first.