Smash-hit zombie series The Walking Dead disappeared after only six episodes last year, which must have been torture for the Americans and, you know, business as usual for the UK, but now it’s back for a superlong 13 episode run, albeit split into two chunks in Doctor Who style.
So, the first new episode has aired on the UK’s FX channel, and how was it? Are they the walking dead, or just the dead?
Cutting Off The Head
Well, the premiere of Walking Dead season 2 has broken records for a drama series on basic cable (whatever that is) in the States, so it’s looking good. But with rumours of behind the scenes strife, including the abrupt departure of showrunner Frank Darabont, were those people tuning in to see a car crash of mangled body parts?
Well, it could still happen. I imagine these early episodes still had Darabont’s fingerprints, so if it’s going to go to hell without him, that might not be for a few weeks. But for now… yeah, this is pretty good isn’t it?
The soap opera picks right up where it left off, there’s an emotional scene between Andrea and Dale regarding last year’s finale, the sequence in which our heroes hide from zombies among a highway of parked cars was dripping with tension, and even by their own standards, the zombie autopsy moment was gruesome.
Rooting Through The Brains
That first half, for the most part, was reminding us of what’s going on and who the characters are, before the new stories got underway. Well, got hinted at anyway. Aside from a few details in the trailer, it’s tough to tell where they’re going with this.
Admittedly, I think I’ve read the relevant sequence in the comic, but based on certain key changes, such as Shane still being alive, there’s no reason to believe they’re going to do chapter and verse. Shane remains the biggest source of drama, although I thought Laurie was weirdly calm about him being around her family, considering the rape attempt last episode. No?
Still, that aside, this was a strong start. Obviously, it could still all go wrong as season 2 progresses, just look at Heroes, but it feels like they’ve kept running without missing a step so far. Let us know how you feel about the return of the zombies.