Wednesday, November 3, 2010
The Walking Dead Television Premiere
I've been long awaiting the premiere of Robert Kirkman's The Walking Dead on AMC. I watched it live on Halloween night - or rather, I watched a whole lot of commercials, and watched The Walking Dead in between them. Seriously - it's been a long time since I've watched the premiere of a show live on TV, but I don't remember having to sit through so many commercials. This is one of the many reasons I prefer to stick to Netflix or various other forms of online streaming to watch my TV. But I suppose all that is beside the point, as the show looks promising.
There were a few added scenes, some of which I thought were a little unnecessary, and some of which filled in a little bit of background on the characters and seemed to work. Of the unnecessary bits, the worst was a strange scene when Rick is in his coma, and Shane comes to see him with some flowers from the police station. We're seeing it from Rick's point of view, as if we are in the hospital bed looking up at a visitor. Shane is talking to Rick, and they do this blurry, delayed vision effect with the camera that just comes off as cheesy. There are a few discrepancies with the graphic novel that bugged me, as well, but I won't go into those as it would probably give too much away and make me seem a little nit-picky. I tend to get that way about details when I'm watching a concept go from a book to the screen - but so much of what makes a story and a character special is in the details.
For the most part the story seems to be progressing as it does in the novel, and I must say that visually it is pretty amazing. Most of the zombies are very realistic looking - realistic when it comes to zombies meaning that they look like a real corpse would look, whether or not it's actually walking or crawling or just standing there groaning - they look pretty darn dead. And smelly. There were a few zombies in the crowd that looked kind of lazy - just kind of pale and ambling with a listless stare, with no visual signs of being bitten or bloody. But I suppose not all zombies, at least right away, look as if they're falling apart or like they've been through a struggle. I mean, every zombie has to start somewhere.
As far as the actors go, the characters that we've met so far seem pretty by the book. I'm not sure how I feel about Rick yet, as there were a few emotional scenes where I felt he could have brought a little more to the table. However, it is only the first episode, and as with any series it could take a few episodes before the actors really get comfortable with their characters and start to shine.
So, I will definitely be following this show (hopefully with less commercials the next time around). It's going to be hard to fill the shoes lefts by the likes of True Blood and Mad Men, but I think The Walking Dead has a shot at it, although the shoes might be a bit bloody by the time Sookie Stackhouse and Don Draper are ready to get them back. Although I suppose Sookie is used to that kind of thing by now.
Catch The Walking Dead on AMC, Sundays at 10pm eastern, U.S
Did you catch the premiere? Let me know what you thought and if you plan on watching the series! Also, more zombies on the horizon as I'll be reviewing Ben Tripp's Rise Again in the coming weeks. Stay tuned!