Just last week, Walking Dead Season 6 set photos overwhelmingly pointed to the arrival of comic favorite Paul ‘Jesus’ Monroe, though few could identify the actor under under a beard and beanie. Now, AMC has confirmed that Luck star Tom Payne will portray the Robert Kirkman figure, bringing about some eye-opening changes with him.

We don’t yet know exactly Tom Payne will first appear as the comic character, though all signs point to the second half of the season in 2016. In the books, Jesus arrives as a representative of the “Hilltop” community, looking to establish contact with Alexandria, before both end up drawn into a war with “The Saviors” (potentially “The Wolves” of Season 5) and their maniacal leader, Negan.

Here’s Jesus and Tom Payne, for comparison:

Walking Dead Season 6 Jesus Tom Payne
Image Comics / Christian Marquardt, Getty Images

Jesus was also notably introduced in the books as a gay character, the subject of which spurred last year’s headlines over the possibility of AMC original character Daryl Dixon emerging as such.

Elsewhere of The Walking Dead Season 6, we know that Straight Outta Compton star Corey Hawkins has joined the series in the comic role of Alexandria runner Heath, alongside new additions Xander Berkeley, Ethan Embry and Merrit Wever. AMC has also released clips and a few photos, amid previews of a fleshed-out comic backstory, while we’ve broken down the Season 6 trailer and previewed exactly how disgusting walkers will look, and all before digital FX.

Not only that, but Season 6 will also host installments of a half-hour special set on an airplane, a character of which will go on to a role in Fear The Walking Dead Season 2. Season 6 has also upped three Alexandria residents to series regular, though that’s certainly no guarantee of their survival.

We’ll see more of The Walking Dead Season 6 on the road to October, so check out the trailers again below, and stay tuned for the latest from cast and crew.

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