Walking Dead’s Norman Reedus explains death of “friend” in S10 finale

David Purcell
Daryl Dixon Walking Dead

The Walking Dead’s Norman Reedus, who plays the popular character Daryl Dixon, has opened up about the long-awaited death scene of a “good friend” during the Season 10 finale.

After months of waiting, thanks to delays due to the current global situation, finally fans know the fate of the show’s top characters heading into the next batch of episodes. In the past, Lauren Cohan had hinted at the return of Maggie’s child, Hershel – but as far as outgoing figures go, it was wide open heading in.

We now know – and it’s a spoiler so look away now if you don’t want to ruin it – that the leader of the Whisperers, Beta, has finally killed off.

His death came at the hands of Reedus’ character as well, who has broken down the way things ended for him during an interview with Digital Spy.

Walking Dead's Beta
Beta has finally exited the show, so the Whisperers are done for.

TWD’s Norman Reedus opens up on Beta’s death in Season 10

During the sit-down, Reedus broke down the scene and what it meant to kill off the series’ biggest villain. It was redemption for all of the lives taken at the hands of the big Whisperer, and it seems like he revelled in being the guy to take him out.

He said: “I felt really good about it. I really like Ryan, and I hate to see Ryan go because he’s such a cool guy… He’s a good friend of mine, but there was a lot of work that went into that death.

“I remember Ryan being like, ‘Oh, so you’re the one that kills me?!'”

Reedus is super close with a number of people on set, including Ryan Hurst, who played Beta. Given the size difference, though, it took some time for the filming crew to figure out how he would be able to realistically win the battle.

Daryl Dixon walking dead
Daryl Dixon was the one to take down Beta, once and for all.

“We figured the only way that Daryl could beat that guy, you know, because he’s so huge, was to get inside and chop him down like a tree. That would’ve been another fight like the last fight, so I came up with the idea of the way that we did it,” he added.

“It was very hard! I’m not a tall guy, and Ryan is so gigantic, so even on his knees I was like, ‘Can I go up in the air?’ It was a thing, it was nuts.”

Beta was seen, for most of the show, with two huge knives as his main weapons. Thankfully for fans of Daryl and other main characters, he’s now out of the picture.

Beta actor reveals the way he wanted to die

Things didn’t end up how Hurst himself might have hoped, however. Previously, in an interview with CinemaBlend, he laid out an alternative – which we now know didn’t come to fruition.

He said: “As it relates to Beta’s death, I had this idea. Being an enormous fan of the show, I wanted to present something a little differently. Just that, you know, we’ve seen Glenn get a bat to the head, we’ve seen so many people get ripped apart and screaming, and I was like, ‘What if it plays out like a Buddhist monk setting himself on fire?’ That he would be totally content with being absolved and sort of surrendering to death in a very peaceful way.”

A wild idea, by anyone’s standards.

Here’s one of his best moments. 

“And I pitched out this organic feeling, and they were like, ‘Yeah, that’s good, but we also want to stab him in the face.’ I was like, ‘Alright, so let’s do that, let’s stab him in the face.’

“But in his final moment, I feel like, in that last little montage homage to Beta and his whole trajectory, it’s sort of like this flickering flame of his humanity going out, and once that was gone, he genuinely welcomed the life that he had built for himself.”

The Walking Dead will end for good in Season 12, so there’s still plenty of time for even more heavy fights for Daryl. Not so much for Beta, though.

It finishes up in 2022, AMC have confirmed.

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