If you’re a reasonable human being, you’re still reeling from the Season 5 finale of “The Walking Dead.” Still, while the dust is still clearing around the events of Alexandria, it’s never too early to look ahead to Season 6.
Luckily for insatiable fans, the comic book and show creator, Robert Kirkman, is already giving viewers some juicy details to salivate over. Speaking to Polygon, the writer teased a new cast member that could be making his or her way onto the show. Unlike other new cast members, this one doesn’t have a background in acting, or speech, or even being human, because... it’s a tiger -- Still with me?
While the new villains “The Wolves” are just a metaphorical manifestation of a ferocious predator, the show may take a more literal approach as early as Season 6. As it turns out, later on in the comic book storyline, a character emerges with a flare for the opulent. To demonstrate this, he keeps a very odd pet.
“There’s a guy who has a tiger for a pet in the comic named Ezekiel who’s really cool,” Kirkman told the outlet. “I always say that I never let the show influence what I’m doing in the comic. But I will say, when I was writing those characters in the comic, I was like, ‘Yeah, good luck doing this, show people!’ I think that we’ll be able to do the tiger. We’ll see.”
Now, this doesn’t exactly count as confirmation that the tiger, Shiva, will make its way to the TV show, as cool as it would be to see a tiger nosh on some zombie bits. However, the show has a history of following the general, broad strokes plot of Kirkman’s comics. For example, in the comics and on the show the characters moved from a campsite outside Atlanta to a farm and then to a prison where they were attacked by a character named The Governor. However, certain characters are much different, and the makeup of who lives and who dies is drastically changed between the page and the screen. Still, comic book fans will know that Ezekiel plays an unavoidable part in the story when he emerges.
Without spoiling the comics, or potentially, the show, the events of the Season 5 finale in the comics act as a catalyst for meeting Ezekiel. So, it’s not unreasonable to assume that the showrunners are thinking about bringing the character and his tiger into the mix sometime in the latter half of Season 6.
Still, the question remains: how likely is it that a tiger could be a plausible addition to the show? Well, as CinemaBlend notes, Kirkman and Scott Gimple are at a point in the series’ popularity where they can pretty much do whatever they’d like, both creatively and budget-wise. If you can think of a better way to exercise that privilege, zombies being eaten by a tiger is a pretty fantastic way to do it.