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Tuesday, 18 October 2011

The Walking Dead - season two, episode one

Contains Spoilers - It is difficult to think of another show in recent years which has been so eagerly awaited. Ever since the original six episode first season, viewers have been left eagerly waiting for t his full length season. The behind the scenes conflict that went on between seasons that saw the show's guiding hand, Frank Darabont sacked from the production didn't bode well. Would this groundbreaking series lose its edge? Well after this first episode it is too early to tell. Though Darabont's influence is all over this first episode - he did shoot most of this one before he was ejected from the show over an argument over the  budget.


When we left off last time our ragged band of survivors were back out on the road after escaping the inferno that was the center for disease control, and after a quick recap, we take up the story only moments after the first season ended. The set piece is an incredibly cinematic sequence set on a gridlocked highway. At first the place seems deserted and the survivors stop to mend a busted radiator, but then the walkers show up - at first one or two and then more and more and... Soon Sophia becomes separated from her mother and runs off into the woods, two walkers on her tail. Rik's off to save her but after managing to lead the walkers away from the little girl he returns to find she has vanished without a trace.

The show may have had its budget cut but that isn't apparent here and there are many gore filled gross out scenes in this sequence - for instance a zombie autopsy reveals that zombies eat woodchucks.
From there on in the story takes a relentless pace and end with another cliffhanger in which we may, or may not have, lost another major character or two.

An excellent start to the new season, but let's hope the quality of storytelling and visuals is kept up over the remaining episodes.

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