The Walking Dead is no stranger to killing off some of its most beloved characters – and if the latest episode is anything to go by, we could be bidding farewell to another favourite before too long.
In the fifth episode of season 10, which aired in the UK tonight, Ezekiel – who is played by Khary Payton – is spotted coughing at various points, no doubt as a result of last week’s episode which saw him inhaling large amounts of smoke during a deadly forest fire.
And when Ezekiel is asked about his cough by Siddiq (Avi Nash), he reveals a tragic piece of news – he’s suffering with thyroid cancer.
Showing Siddiq a large lump on his neck, he admits that he has known about the cancer for a month, adding that the tumour has grown since then.
He says, “Siddiq, I know what it is. Growing up, my grandfather went through it and my father. The pain, coughing, swelling – I watched them fight it and win.
“Did you know thyroid cancer has a 98% survival rate? Different times. Times of sorcery and witchcraft. Chemo, iodine radiation therapy, thyroidectomy. Now – now we both know what it means.”
Ezekiel has proved a fan favourite on the show since he was introduced in season seven, and so if this is to be the end of the road for the character he’s likely to be much-missed by viewers.
But it’s worth noting that Ezekiel has actually outlived his counterpart from the Walking Dead comics – so perhaps he was already living on borrowed time!
Over the course of the show’s run, more than 30 characters have been killed off, including almost all of the original cast.
The Walking Dead airs Mondays at 9pm on FOX in the UK