Spoiler alert for those of you who haven’t caught up with AMC’s The Walking Dead.
When last we left the sprawling cast of AMC’s The Walking Dead at the end of the Season 7 midseason finale, one fan-favorite character’s fate was left up in the air. Of course I’m talking about Heath, the glasses-wearing, dreadlocks-rocking survivor played by Corey Hawkins. Heath made his first appearance in the Season 6 premiere “First Time Again” and has appeared in a half-dozen episodes in total. However, the Season 7 episode “Swear” left Heath’s fate undecided and the midseason finale did not address it, to fans’ distress.
So when our own Allison Keene was in attendance at TCA 2017 for Hawkins’ starring role in Fox’s upcoming series 24: Legacy, you just knew she was going to ask him about The Walking Dead. (She also managed to sneak in a question or two about his role in the major feature film Kong: Skull Island, so be sure to check out his answers here.)
Here’s what Hawkins had to say about Heath’s fate on The Walking Dead:
“It’s usually very finite, right? But me and [showrunner] Scott [Gimple] have had a lot of conversations; Scott has been great in terms of asking and talking and really trying to figure out where the character was coming from and going, and you know, professional things take you where they take you, that’s normal. But we left it open … so I will just say there is always a possibility, there is always a way.”
On the surface, that’s a pretty deft way to avoid directly answering the question. However, Keene reports that Hawkins seemed quite interested in returning to play Heath, so there are one of two things going on: Either Hawkins knows the fate of Heath for sure and is just being smart about not giving anything away, or his return is up in the air and possibly subject to contract negotiations. Hawkins isn’t a series regular on The Walking Dead, and he has some sizable roles both in his recent filmography and out ahead of him; he could command a decent price tag if he wanted to. But with so many series regulars already occupying a packed cast on the AMC show, I can’t imagine that there’s a lot of room for Heath to have a major role … unless he shifts to another show.
The last we saw of Heath, he had just done his damnedest to keep a pack of Walkers away from Tara (Alanna Masterson), who promptly fell over a bridge and was spirited away to a village populated only by women and children. (If you haven’t seen this episode, don’t bother.) By the time she returned, Heath was gone, likely escaping in their camper, though he had apparently lost his glasses during the fight. But when Tara made her way back to Alexandria to learn about all the horror that had transpired while they were out on their supply run, Heath was nowhere to be found there either…
Do you think we’ll ever learn Heath’s fate? Let us know in the comments below!