AMC debuted it’s highly anticipated zombie series last year on Halloween. My family and I huddled together in the darkness of our living room, staring in rapt attention at the TV as zombie after zombie shuffled across the screen. It was sheer brilliance. The zombies were so real you could almost smell their foul putrescence, each one more gruesome than the last.
I had high hopes for the season, but it didn’t pan out. In retrospect, I think it was my fault. I had hoped that the show would follow the books. They were such a wealth of ideas it would be crazy not to use the material. Instead, the show saw survivor Rick Grimes dragging his wife, son, and other survivors to the Center for Disease Control. There they found some interesting facts about the zombie virus, and we got to see an x-ray movie of a zombie. Cool, but not as awesome as some of the scenes in the book.
On the other hand, my gripes aside, the casting was beyond perfect! Hero Rick Grimes is played to perfection by Andrew Lincoln, who seems to not only portray Rick’s strength but simultaneously bring an air of unspoken uncertainty and insecurity. After all – he’s not Superman. He’s a man who is lucky to have his wife and son still alive, and he’s fully aware of it every moment that they survive. His guilt-stricken and confused best friend Shane is played by Jon Bernthal, who leaves nothing to be desired in the role of friend-turned-foe. Unfaithful wife Lori is given life by Sarah Wayne Callies. The other characters are perfect to the point of being creepy. They look almost identical to their characters, right down to their facial expressions.
Thankfully, AMC chose not to inundate the series with cheesy celebrity cameos. I can’t speak for other viewers, but I know I’d rather have people starting their careers. I don’t want to watch and say, “Oh wait, I know that person”. To me, that ruins the apocalypse because you know that actor or actress as someone else. The one exception is Norman Reedus, of “Boondock Saints” fame. It had been so many years since he was in that iconic movie that he was not immediately recognizable to me.
As the debut of “The Walking Dead” Season 2 gets closer I find myself excited. The trailer for the new season can be found at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1OZ0mu8Ey6A and you NEED to watch it right now. It’s going to be amazing. I’m back on board fully and counting down the days. When the season debut is televised, I will be right there, glued to my chair and devouring every frame.