When Alanna Masterson appeared on Talking Dead after the Sept. 12, 2021 episode of The Walking Dead, it was bittersweet for fans. It forced them to remember Tara's best moments from the series, but it also reminded them of her untimely death.
However, there are some more casual fans who are trying to remember how Tara died in The Walking Dead.
Alanna played Tara for six seasons before she was killed off the long-running AMC series. Of course, she's in good company, with the likes of Carl, Glenn, and Hershel, just to name a few. But because her death was unexpected by tons of fans and still felt by many, let's revisit the tragedy that led to losing Tara.
How did Tara die in 'The Walking Dead'?
The Season 9 time jump shows Tara in a place of power. She is, essentially, the leader of Hilltop after Maggie leaves. And she comes into her own.
She is also still fair enough to not be totally blinded by power when it comes to leading her people. But she ends up a casualty of the Whisperer War.
Although Tara doesn't live long enough to actually fight in the war, which ravages both Alexandria and Hilltop, she is killed because of it.
In order to make a border between the land of the survivors and the Whisperers, Alpha kidnaps several members of the communities. She kills them and places their zombified heads on stakes to mark the border.
Tara's head is one of them.
Tara's death happens off-screen, but it is still a monumental moment in the series. While she wasn't necessarily an untouchable (read: Daryl or Carol), she was a big part of the show.
She had been with the other survivors for several seasons, and she was in a leadership position. Her death was another that showed that almost no one is safe on The Walking Dead.
Tara's wasn't the only dead head on a stake in 'The Walking Dead.'
When Daryl, Michonne, Carol, Siddiq, and Yumiko find Tara among the staked heads, it is revealed that a few other key innocent characters were also killed off-screen, like Carol's adoptive son, Henry, and another of the younger survivors, Enid.
Although Tara's actual death doesn't happen on the show in front of viewers' eyes, it's understood that Alpha kills her, along with the others, to make a point.
Following her exit from the show, Alanna told Entertainment Weekly that she would miss "the cast and crew the most" and she would even miss working the long strenuous hours.
Clearly, all the hard work was worth the payoff and even now, fans miss Tara.
Watch The Walking Dead on Sundays at 9 p.m. EST on AMC.