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Did The Walking Dead Season 11 Episode 1 Just Confirm Heath's Fate?

Contains spoilers for "The Walking Dead" Season 11, Episode 1

After 10 full seasons and one more to go, AMC's "The Walking Dead" is shambling toward its end. The first episode of the show's final season, "Acheron Part 1," largely focuses on a dangerous, but necessary supply run that sees the tensions between Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) and the rest of the group flare to a possible boiling point, which might just spell bad news for Maggie (Lauren Cohan). Meanwhile, another group has to go through the mind-numbing bureaucracy of Mercer's (Michael James Shaw) Commonwealth which, frankly, makes the danger of being devoured by a pack of zombies almost inviting by comparison.   

All of this is exactly the kind of stuff that you want from the final season of a hard-hitting zombie drama. However, you may have missed one of the episode's more intriguing moments, due to its blink-and-you-miss-it nature. Here's why some fans think this the first episode of "The Walking Dead" Season 11 may have confirmed the ultimate fate of Corey Hawkins' resourceful supply runner, Heath. 

Heath's name appears on the Wall of the Lost

The last fans saw of Heath was the Season 10 episode "What We Become," in which Michonne (Danai Gurira) shot her in the head. However, that was simply a hallucination, courtesy of Virgil (Kevin Carroll). Heath's true whereabouts are still unconfirmed in the show, as he unceremoniously disappeared during a flashback sequence in the Season 7 episode, "Swear," leaving behind a card with the cryptic letters "PPP."  

Keen-eyed "The Walking Dead" fans have now spotted an intriguing detail about his possible fate in the latest episode. One of the wham moments of the episode involves a wall that Ezekiel (Khary Payton) calls "The Wall of the Lost," which is exactly what the name implies — a giant collection of people whose whereabouts the Commonwealth would very much like to know. If you're not paying attention, the scene mostly revolves around the discovery that Yumiko's (Eleanor Matsuura) brother might still be alive and kicking. However, fans on Reddit have pointed out that Heath's name also makes an appearance. "Anyone else notice Heath on the wall of the lost?" redditor Wavyalien asked. "Yep I noticed that too," user MuskyDillPickle replied.

Could Heath be returning to The Walking Dead?

Now, here's where things get interesting. Though Heath's disappearance is still a mystery in-universe, "The Walking Dead" showrunner Angela Kang has revealed that Heath actually exited the show with the same helicopter Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) did (via Insider). "That was kind of the intention that we had in the back of our heads this whole time," Kang said. "Even back in that season where you know we had to write the wonderful Corey Hawkins out, because he had huge opportunities in the feature film world ... those seeds were already set there."

Hawkins, of course, has gone on to build a wonderful career, playing Dr. Dre in "Straight Outta Compton," starring in "24: Legacy," and having notable roles in "Kong: Skull Island" and "BlacKkKlansman." Should he be willing to revisit the comparatively small role of Heath, both Kang and Robert Kirkman have stated that the show would welcome him back with open arms. Since the Wall of the Lost brought Heath's name back in conversation, and the context implies that he's still presumed to be alive, we might yet see Heath make his grand return ... either in the show, or in that upcoming "The Walking Dead" movie. 

Then again, the Wall could simply be one final Easter egg of a nod to a great supporting character whose story never got a proper conclusion. Only future episodes of "The Walking Dead" will reveal whether we'll ever find out what that "PPP" card is all about.