The Walking Dead has gone from hinting about Beta’s under-the-mask true identity to pretty much just spelling it out.
This past week, we had yet another easter egg to add to the pile, though if you didn’t catch it, I wouldn’t blame you. It’s actually a two-for-one easter egg, which sounds weird, but you’ll understand in a minute.
There’s a scene with Yumiko and Magna where they’re listening to a song on a record player. The song is actually a new single, The Turtle and the Monkey, by Emily Kinney, the actress who used to play Beth on the show before she was killed off in the dumbest way possible. But it’s not Kinney singing, it’s actually a male voice on the record.
So, this is the other half of the easter egg, as the theory is that it’s actually Beta’s pre-apocalypse identity singing the tune. Out of context, this sounds very weird, but here’s the list of evidence so far.
In Fear the Walking Dead, there is a moment where Daniel spills a bunch of records on the pavement, and there’s one that sure looks like Beta actor Ryan Hurst in a cowboy hat. Later, it was confirmed that the episode contained a Beta hint.
In the Beta flashback, we see that he’s in a rehab facility, something a music star might have been in before the collapse, and he’s still wearing a mask back then. The idea is not that Beta is disfigured in some way, it’s that he’s a recognizable celebrity, and he’s wearing a mask all the time to disconnect from his former identity.
Finally, Ryan Hurst pretty much just admits it in an interview, despite attempting to be coy:
“What do you know? I can’t say too much,” Hurst said on Talking Dead. “All I can say at this point is maybe Beta was a large personality in the world before the apocalypse, and that sort of letting go of that might have been tragic to his psyche. I can’t say much more than that.”
Finally, this would be a spin on the comic reveal that Beta was a former basketball star and actor, and it seems it’s just been altered to make him a music star here.
This week is probably one of the more subtle clues, though this being a record directly ties to the record Daniel dropped, so that’s another connection. I have tried to look up if Ryan Hurst actually sings, but I can’t find anything about that. I’m not sure it really matters, given that I doubt we’re actually going to see Beta perform anything on the show (though that would be hilarious). Rather, it will probably just be like the comics where eventually he’s unmasked and recognized. It’s not really an important part of the story it’s just interesting.
Anyway, I’m considering this theory not really a theory, but just something that hasn’t been revealed yet. Look for more clues in future episodes until this is all out in the open.