A New 'Walking Dead' Romance? Henry & Lydia Could Be the Show's Romeo & Juliet
[Warning: The below contains potential comic spoilers for Season 9B of The Walking Dead.]
If you sensed a spark developing between Hilltop’s newest blacksmith apprentice and the Whisperer prisoner who may or may not be manipulating the community’s leaders on The Walking Dead, you’re picking up on the right cues.
Though Henry (Matt Lintz) and Lydia (Cassady McClincy) are on opposite sides — and in opposite jail cells — it wouldn’t be incorrect to assume a romance could develop between them in the coming episodes. Henry’s feelings for Enid (Katelyn Nacon) are seemingly fated to end in heartbreak (she’s quite happy with Alden), but he’s clearly still looking for love, and his passionate defense of Lydia to Daryl (Norman Reedus) seems to imply he might be falling for, or at least interested in, her.
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Since Henry’s taking other aspects of Carl’s (Chandler Riggs) comic story, including heading to Hilltop to become a blacksmith and ending up in the community’s jail, it seems likely he’ll be taking Carl’s role as Romeo to Lydia’s Juliet. Based on the source material, here’s how things might develop between them.
So far, Lydia and Henry have followed a similar trajectory to Lydia and Carl in the comics. While Henry’s reason for ending up in the cells is different than Carl’s, they both strike up a conversation with Lydia while in Hilltop lockup.
The only major differences in the way the pair was introduced have been Lydia’s attitude (she wasn't so weepy when she was interrogated in the comics), and there was no attempt to execute her in the source material like Daryl does on the show.
Getting to Know Each Other
If the show follows the comic trajectory, Henry might be left to watch over Lydia if he successfully convinces Daryl and Tara to let their prisoner out of her cell. Carl is eventually able to show her around; they get to know each other rather intimately in a scene involving Lydia licking Carl’s empty eye socket. It won’t be surprising if the show doesn’t adapt this considering Henry has both of his eyes, and the show has made a habit of censoring the comic’s more explicit material.
The actor hints at what's to come with the Whisperers.
Their blossoming romance is thwarted, however, by Alpha’s arrival at Hilltop and her demand for them to give her back her daughter. When Hilltop gives her up, Lydia and Carl are separated — but Carl, unwilling to let her go, follows Alpha and the rest of the Whisperers. He ends up at their camp and Rick comes to get him. Alpha then allows Lydia to go with Rick, and Lydia ends up as part of the core group.
Obviously, this part of the story can’t go to Rick and Carl, but Henry could certainly follow Alpha and her group if Lydia is given back to the Whisperers. Then Rick’s role could be given to Ezekiel, Carol or even Daryl, and Lydia might end up at the Kingdom or Hilltop.
The Whisperer War and Afterward
Things get tricky for Carl and Lydia from there on out. She shoulders some of the blame among the survivors for Alpha’s grotesque heads-on-pikes punishment, even though Lydia didn’t know about it. Nevertheless, their relationship survives the Whisperer War, and they are still together in the comics.
The showrunner talks translating some pivotal moments, introducing Alpha and Lydia, and what fans can expect next.
Plenty of aspects of Lydia and Henry’s story could mirror Lydia and Carl’s, and plenty of aspects could be changed completely… but it’s probable these two are headed for a bumpy road either way.
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