Thursday, November 18, 2010

REVIEW- The Walking Dead on AMC.

I've decided to take a quick break from the political stuff to bring you my review of the new AMC television show The Walking Dead.  I had to say, before this show premiered on Halloween, I was a bit skeptical of it.  A zombie show?  On AMC?  It was a clear recipe for disaster.  It wasn't going to be brutal enough for the true zombie lovers, and it probably was going to have a real shitty storyline.

Oh, boy, was I wrong.  The Walking Dead is packed with extremely graphic zombies, and the show holds nothing back when said zombies manage to get some of the flesh they constantly crave.  Even better, about three-quarters of each episode has you sitting on the edge of your seat, wondering just when a zombie is going to show up.  Why?  Because The Walking Dead doesn't play music when there is suspense.  Usually background music is a good indication that something is going to happen to whoever seems to be blessing our television screens at that specific moment, but without music, there is no way to anticipate a zombie assault.


But wait- there's more!  The acting in this show is incredibly well done (I'm talking award worthy), despite most of the actors being somewhat new to the scene.  And while there may only be six episodes in the first season, thankfully AMC has already renewed it for a second season, giving these talented actors more chances to wow us in the future.

Each episode is an hour long with commercials, although the pilot was an hour and a half.  I'll give you a quick rundown of the plot without any spoilers. 

Sheriff Rick Grimes and his partner, Shane, get called to the scene of a police chase one day when they are on duty.  Setting up a roadblock, Rick lays down a spike trap in order to stop the criminal's car.  Sure enough, the "bad guy" doesn't see it, and hits the trap going so fast, his car flips over and ends up off road, when the police surround it with weapons raised.

"Put your hands up, you nasty bitch."

The criminals (who all look homeless) get out of the car, stumbling, but with their own hand guns at the ready.  They seems to have no desire to talk or go quietly.  A firefight ensues and Rick ends up getting shot twice, knocking him out.  What follows is a montage of sorts of him being hospitalized and falling into a coma.

And when he wakes up, the hospital is abandoned.  Now, our protagonist doesn't wake up and immediately set to work zombie slaying.  He is confused, his muscles are weak, he's dehydrated and hungry, and the hospital is in shambles.  Traveling down one hall, he reaches a set of locked doors with those small little windows at about chest to eye level, depending on your height.  On the other side of the doors, he sees the half-eaten corpse of what looks to be a woman, and the fluorescent lights are flickering on and off.

Down another hallway, he reaches a set of doors with a chain and padlock around the handles.  It looks a little something like this:
 Yeah.  Imagine waking up from a coma and being in this guy's position.  Not fun.  I won't say anymore about the plot, but trust me when I say that it's a good'un.  What's interesting is that the show isn't really about the zombies.  It's about the regular humans trying to survive in a world overrun with the walking dead.

Another point of interest is who the director of the show is.  Frank Darabont, director of The Shawshank Redemption (love it!) and The Green Mile (haven't seen it!), is the man that brings you the exciting tale of The Walking Dead.

Now, I'm going to man up for a moment here.  I can handle werewolves and vampires (I'm talking about the older, scarier ones, not Edward Cullen), and other creatures of the night.  Few movies actually frighten me.  But zombies?  I don't know if it's the make-up or what; zombies creep me the fuck out.  I've given it some thought, however, and come to the conclusion that maybe they freak me out as much as they do because they aren't entirely fictional.  No, the dead aren't going to get up and start walking around, but it is possible for a disease to cause our brains to revert back to the basic instincts that it was built around.  We could lose the ability to talk and reason, and resist the urge to snack on flesh.  Note: I'm not saying this is going to happen, just that it isn't impossible.  Sure, the possibility is extremely low, but that doesn't make it fictitious.

"You know, gingivitis is the number one cause of all tooth decay."
-Ace Ventura

Anyway, I'm getting off track.  Why the hell are you still reading this post?  Go online and try to find the past three episodes of The Walking Dead that have already played on television.  If you can't find them, who cares?  Watch The Walking Dead on AMC Sundays at 10:00 PM.  Or you'll make the little zombie girl below very angry.

I don't know what she had for dinner, but it looks
positively scrumptious.


ZedWord said...

If you want to see what Darabont can do with a story that revolves around character conflict and friendship (like the Walking Dead), definitely check out The Green Mile.

Shaun said...

Darabont is fantastic. I did watch The Shawshank Redemption (easily one of my favorite movies of all time), but I never got around to watching The Green Mile. I definitely want to check it out though!