- Warning: There are spoilers ahead for “The Walking Dead.”
- Seth Gilliam tells Insider how his character, Father Gabriel, would really feel about Pope.
- Gilliam says Pope’s religious beliefs are “bullshit” and says nothing he’s doing is “God-like.”
Father Gabriel wouldn’t have time for Pope’s shenanigans if the two ever met on “TWD.”
When asked what “The Walking Dead’s” resident holy man, Gabriel, would think of Pope’s rather extreme philosophies of God on the series, Seth Gilliam didn’t mince words.
“I think that Father Gabriel will find it as just a whole lot of bullshit,” Gilliam told Insider of what Father Gabe would make of Ritchie Coster’s villainous leader of the Reapers.
Ritchie Coster was introduced on “TWD” in season 11 as “Pope.”
“You’re just another self-absorbed narcissistic human being,” Gilliam said of Pope. “This is not Godly behavior. This is not God-like in its message, in its intention. You’re a false prophet.”
Pope convinced his military family that they all survived early on in the apocalypse because God chose them to survive.
So far this season, we’ve seen Pope lock Daryl and Leah in a burning room to see if they could escape. We’ve also seen him throw a man into a fire alive. Both were in the name of God.
Pope has a unique understanding of God in the zombie apocalypse. Here, he explains his beliefs to Daryl.
Though Pope really seems to believe everything he’s saying, it’s a convenient way for the Reaper leader to justify whatever he wants to accomplish, no matter the cost.
Ever since Coster’s introduction, fans have wanted to see Father Gabriel and Pope share an exchange about their differing religious beliefs.
Gilliam told Insider it’s something he wanted, too.
A showdown between the two would definitely be an interesting one.
Gabriel’s faith in God has been a bit shaken of late and has taken him down a darker path. He seems to have lost a lot of his connection with God. After convincing Mays (Robert Patrick) how people are capable of more than just killing one another, Gabriel shockingly murdered the man in cold blood.
Father Gabriel killed Mays (Robert Patrick) with Aaron’s arm on season 10, episode 19.
On Sunday’s episode of “TWD,” Gabriel was taken aback when he saw a different Reaper devout in his faith, appearing to connect to God in a way Gabe hasn’t in a long time. Instead of killing the Reaper, Gabe hesitated, and ultimately let him live.
Gilliam told Insider Gabe was “confounded” in that moment “by someone who seems to still have the fervor for God that [Father Gabriel] has kind of lost.”
Father Gabriel sees Mancea (left), one of Pope’s men, on season 11, episode 7 of “TWD.”
Perhaps Pope is some extreme version of what Gabriel could become if he continues down his current path.
Now that Gabe, Maggie, and Negan are descending on Pope’s people with a massive group of walkers, we’ll have to wait to see if a meeting between the two may come to fruition.
You can follow along with our “TWD” coverage here and read our longer Q&A with Gilliam here.
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