The Walking Dead season 10 has added Juan Javier Cardenas to the cast as comic book character Dante. Going into its tenth season, TWD is at something of a crossroads after the departure of long-time lead Andrew Lincoln (who of course is set to return to the universe in a Walking Dead movie) and the imminent departure of main cast member Danai Gurira. Season 9 also saw the (possibly only temporary) departure of Lauren Cohan as Maggie Rhee.
Cast turnover is of course always a major issue for TWD, as characters are killed off and new characters arrive. Last year’s season 9 saw several major new characters coming aboard, none bigger then Whisperers leader Alpha, portrayed by Oscar-nominee Samantha Morton. After a time jump, the show also introduced an older Judith, played by Cailey Fleming. Other new season 9 characters included Magna (Nadia Hilker), Yumiko (Eleanor Matsuura), Luke (Dan Fogler), Connie (Lauren Ridloff) and Kelly (Angel Theory), a new group who were welcomed into the communities after a shaky beginning. The show also introduced major bad guy character Beta (Ryan Hurst), who proved a formidable adversary for Daryl (Norman Reedus) during one of the season’s biggest fight scenes.
With work on season 10 now underway, The Walking Dead has reportedly added another new character who may play a major role. Per Skybound, Juan Javier Cardenas has joined the cast as Dante. Comic book fans will be familiar with Dante, a member of the Hilltop who in the comics formed a relationship with Maggie. Of course, Maggie is no longer on the show – for now – so Dante will be receiving a new arc for the series.
Prior to his casting on The Walking Dead, Cardenas appeared in a number of different TV shows, including the FX series Snowfall, USA Network’s Damnation and CBS’s S.W.A.T. In addition to Cardenas, TWD is also adding several other new cast members this year, most notably Thora Birch as the Whisperer Gamma, a character who does not appear in the comics. Kevin Carroll has also joined the show as a character named Virgil.
It remains to be seen what changes will be made to Dante’s story with the Maggie love interest angle off the table. The show could make Dante a love interest for another character, or he could have an entirely different purpose altogether. As always with The Walking Dead, it’s difficult to guess which comic book characters will translate to the show and which ones won’t. Fans often get excited for the arrival of their favorite comic characters, but very often the TV versions fail to get satisfying arcs (as was certainly the case with Jesus, to name just one).
More: The Walking Dead Season 10 Trailer Breakdown: 11 Major Story Reveals
The Walking Dead season 10 premieres on October 6, 2019 on AMC.