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JohnMcMahon    587

FX are teasing this over the closing credits of some programmes with a spiel along the lines of "Coming November 5th, the director's cut of the biggest TV event since The Wire"!

 

They don't mention the actual name of the show but I believe that's when The Walking Dead actually starts in the UK/Ireland.

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slinker    893

Oh, I'll definitely DVR. I keep whole seasons of my favorite shows. I'll probably even leave my TV on AMC while I'm gone just so if anyone checks, it's viewing Walking Dead live.

 

And, ohmygod! It was fabulous! It comes off more like an American tragedy than a horror tale. The zombies are more than just monsters to flee, they are human beings with no humanity or consciousness or motivation other than eating (poor horse!). This is nothing new, but the way the creators of the show-and this also is why the comic is so great-slice these pathetic monsters into former humans, of whose former humanity we get these tiny glimpses, is creative storytelling at its height for the medium of TV.

 

Seriously, when it started, I teared up. No idea why, but this is the culmination of a dream for me. I think Walking Dead might be my favorite comic, and at least episode 1 more than does the comic a good service. I even watched it critically and tried to find stuff that was sub-par,and other than a clumsy scene between 2 characters who are only in the show for 1 scene (no spoiler here), well one of them is, but it was a scene included to foreshadow coming drama that really didn't fit, or wasn't necessary.

 

The sounds the zombies make are unique and creepy.

 

And Mark's general review earlier was pretty much on the money. Let me echo how cleverly the pacing fits the narrative. Honestly, I can't recall a better premiere episode of a TV show. Breaking Bad was killer, but WD wins the blue ribbon from me.

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James    38

The one I found was pretty decent quality. I think someone must have gone back and done something to make it better (but I hate to speculate what and how). Am about to check it out. Pretty stoked because I was going to have to DVR the premiere Halloween night as I suddenly have plans I didn't expect. So, happy bonus time for ME!

 

I'm not sure whether DVR'ing counts ratings-wise but you should do that anyway. A lot hinges on the show's ratings for the first two episodes. Wouldn't want this being cancelled. It seems unlikely since everyone and their mom seems to love zombies these days but still.

 

Surely unless you're in one of the Neilsen households it won't make a difference?

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Abhimanyu    20

The one I found was pretty decent quality. I think someone must have gone back and done something to make it better (but I hate to speculate what and how). Am about to check it out. Pretty stoked because I was going to have to DVR the premiere Halloween night as I suddenly have plans I didn't expect. So, happy bonus time for ME!

 

I'm not sure whether DVR'ing counts ratings-wise but you should do that anyway. A lot hinges on the show's ratings for the first two episodes. Wouldn't want this being cancelled. It seems unlikely since everyone and their mom seems to love zombies these days but still.

 

Surely unless you're in one of the Neilsen households it won't make a difference?

 

Yeah, you're right. Forgot about how that idiotic Nielsen system works.

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slinker    893

Nielson is but one rating system. If you have a cable box or SAT dish or any other method of watching the tele which includes your ability to record programs and/or watch TV shows directly after they have aired or order movies for a fee--basically if you pay a subscription service, everything you watch is logged on a server--especially ads you didn't FFwd through (they no longer mind FFwding through ads because when you don't, it gives them enough info to customize the kinds of ads you receive. I was surprised to learn that based on my viewing habits, I get different ads in commercial breaks than my next door neighbor, depending on the channel. Have you ever watched TV, a local commercial comes on, then you catch the last 3 seconds of another ad that seems national? Well, it used to be local cable companies putting on local ads they broadcast to all their regional subscribers, rather than whatever ad the network aired nationally. But now, with more sophisticated boxes, they can, again based on your viewing habits, which you cannot hide in any way other than setting your channels on crap that stinks and then downloading torrents (I know a guy who does this to "fuck with marketing"). So, nowadays, program logs for certain demographics are sold by cable companies and providers to the networks who treat them with higher priority than they do Nielsen's. Neilsen has been in danger of becoming obsolete, but hired someone from one of the big telecoms to modernize how they take, process, measure and report data. Nielsen families are soon to be gone the way of the dodo, replaced by simple ".txt" or ".log" files for a given period of time - week, month, specific days, etc. All of a sudden, your commercials seem to be more about stuff that doesn't offend your senses quite as badly as it used to, and you are getting the TV version of custom pop-up ads, or something like that.

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James    38
But now, with more sophisticated boxes, they can, again based on your viewing habits, which you cannot hide in any way other than setting your channels on crap that stinks and then downloading torrents (I know a guy who does this to "fuck with marketing").

 

That guy's a moron. All he's doing is encouraging worse TV.

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slinker    893

Yeah well, he's an anarchosyndicalist so maybe he likes bad TV?

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JohnMcMahon    587

Spoiler heavy post ahoy.

 

As always starting with the negative....

 

The scene where Rick's about to shoot himself and then just pops up into the tank...what in the ? Did he just spot the hatch when he looked up maybe ? Felt really weird.

 

That aside though, a startlingly faithful adaptation of the first issue of the comic with the 'new' stuff being amongst the highlights of the episode! The zombies looked great and I was really surprised at the levels of gore on display, how many on-camera headshots where there ? Speaking of, Morgan popping zombies with his newly-acquired hunting rifle while Rick indulged his compassionate killer side was excellently done.

 

Smashing use of the tank despite my slight grumble up above, top visual to fade out on and the audio introduction over the radio of a certain character was perfect, absolutely perfect.

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JohnMcMahon    587

Big Debut For 'Walking Dead' On AMC

 

Following AMC’s most expansive promotional campaign, the cable network's new drama The Walking Dead launched with more that 5.3 total million viewers last night, the largest audience for an original series on AMC. In adults 18-49, Walking Dead garnered 3.6 million viewers to become the highest-rated cable series premiere in 2010. In addition to the original 10 PM airing, AMC reran the Walking Dead pilot at 11:30 PM and 1 AM for a cumulative audience of 8.1 million viewers. “It’s a good day to be dead," said AMC president Charlie Collier "We are so proud of this series, its depth of storytelling and the remarkable talent attached.”

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Shawn    297

5.3 million!!! WOW!

And John, if you say it's good, it must be.

 

Why have I not watched this yet?!?!

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JohnMcMahon    587

AMC Renews 'Walking Dead' For Season 2

 

(New York, NY – November 8, 2010) AMC announced today the renewal of “The Walking Dead” for a 13-episode second season. Since debuting Sunday, October 31, “The Walking Dead” has broken ratings records, with the series reaching more Adults 18-49 than any other show in the history of cable television.

 

Today’s announcement also includes Fox International Channels’ (FIC) global renewal for a second season, following record-breaking premiere ratings in 120 countries in Europe, Latin America, Asia and the Middle East. “The Walking Dead” was the highest-rated original series premiere ever to air on FIC simultaneously worldwide.

 

“The ‘Dead’ has spread!” said Charlie Collier, President, AMC. “No other cable series has ever attracted as many Adults 18-49 as ‘The Walking Dead.’ This reaffirms viewers’ hunger for premium television on basic cable. We are so proud to be bringing back ‘The Walking Dead’ again, across the globe.”

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Abhimanyu    20

Second episode wasn't as good as the first but that's to be expected. I figure they had to stick in a lot more running and gunning in this one, given the contemplative nature of the pilot. Still - lots of entertaining bits.

 

The only thing that bothered me a little (aside from some slightly dodgy dialogue) was the shift in the gender dynamics. Maybe I'm not remembering the comics right but wasn't Andrea a really good shot? And now suddenly she needs to have the safety catch explained to her? Also, Laurie isn't coming off the same way as she did in the comics. From what I recall, it was loneliness and the need for her son to have a father figure that drove her into Shane's arms but here she seems to be having quite the time which doesn't really sit right with the situation. But this could just be me misremembering the comics.

 

Still a fun hour all told.

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Mark    333
Maybe I'm not remembering the comics right but wasn't Andrea a really good shot? And now suddenly she needs to have the safety catch explained to her? Also, Laurie isn't coming off the same way as she did in the comics. From what I recall, it was loneliness and the need for her son to have a father figure that drove her into Shane's arms but here she seems to be having quite the time which doesn't really sit right with the situation.

 

Andrea certainly ends up as quite the badass, but when the comic starts, she's a lot less competent and experienced - I don't remember if she was quite "needs the safety catch explained" ignorant, but she's mentioned in recent issues that she'd never fired a gun before the zombie outbreak - if her character arc is going to be innocent-girl-becomes-asskicking-badass, it makes sense to start out by showing her strength of will (the gun to Rick's head) but also her relative lack of experience.

 

They're definitely playing Lorie/Shane very differently from the early stages of Kirkman's version - that was clear from the pilot, which opens with a conversation between Rick and Shane which clearly establishes that Rick & Lorie are having some marital problems, something which is never mentioned in the comic. I can think of several valid reasons for making that change - the most obvious, to me, being that it makes for a more nuanced and potentially-interesting dynamic between all three characters if Rick/Lorie's marriage was less-than-perfect to start with, and the 'betrayal' amounts to more than just a one-off grief-fuck (which really could be pitched just about anywhere on a scale from "Rick is a shitty husband who drove his wife into the arms of another man" to "Lorie is a no-good cheating bitch-whore"). I suppose we'll just have to wait and see where they're heading with it over the course of the season.

 

A decent second episode, all-round, although not in the same league as the pilot. Some fairly clumsy dialogue and less-than-subtle character dynamics - gosh, do you think the shouty redneck-looking guy is going to be a racist lunatic? Why, yes he is! On the other hand, they did a good job of upping the scale of the escaping-the-city sequence without losing the tension or sense of danger.

 

On the whole, though, still pretty good stuff. I like that they're already making significant changes from the comic - I hope at least some of the new-for-the-TV-version characters will survive long-term, if only because it'll make it a lot harder for those of us who've read the book to predict where things are going.

 

Looking at the teaser for next week, it seems almost too obvious that they're setting Merle The Racist and his redneck gang up as a significant group of non-zombie antagonists for Our Heroes - that doesn't really surprise me, because if I were in charge of this show, then one of the first things I'd do would be to figure out a way of laying the long-term groundwork for a take on the prison-siege arc which steers as far away as possible from the Evil Town, USA/Governor seedy McRapesalot version. It's far too early to tell, obviously - it could all be over within the next episode - but if the Redneck Clan end up going off to set up their own survivor's group before the end of the season, I'll be doing the told-you-so dance in anticipation.

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JohnMcMahon    587

Seems slmost redundant to post after Mark's on-the-money mumblings there but sure why not anyway...

 

I'm pretty sure they're just laying the groundwork for Andrea to be the arsekicker her comic's counterpart turned out to be, that and possibly something of a love interest for Rick - though Glenn seems to have his eye on her so maybe not!

 

I'll be surprised if Shane and Lori have only been going at it since the outbreak occurred, I prefer the way their relationship is being portrayed here (though I didn't really need to know she likes it from behind) and Shane's actually coming off like a decent enough chap to me (apart from fucking his best mate's wife, but sure we all have our faults). I think he made the right decision in not sending anyone else into Atlanta, Rick wouldn't have sent anyone either but then he would've gone in himself.

 

Redneck Racist was something of an annoying charicature but the chap playing him was perfect for the part, I liked the other guy padlocking the door before legging it - least he gave the guy a chance!

 

Glenn was the star of the show this time out though. Saving Rick, taking charge of the sewer situation and then following all that up with his hi-jinks in the sport's car.

 

I have to smile everytime I see the RV - I bet Kirkman's walking on air these days, surely there's no way he could ever have thought he'd see such a faithful recreation of his zombie infested world on the small screen. A lot of people seem to think the season will end with Carl sooting Shane but I'm leaning more towards some reveal involving that mysterious chopper.

 

from next week's episode, it's SPOILERIFIC.

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Abhimanyu    20

 

 

Redneck Racist was something of an annoying charicature but the chap playing him was perfect for the part, I liked the other guy padlocking the door before legging it - least he gave the guy a chance!

 

 

Yeah, that's a perfect bit of casting there. Michael Rooker has made a career entirely out of playing racist rednecks with violent tendencies, ranging from Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer to Mississippi Burning.

 

I agree with Mark on Merle being the beginning of a non-zombie series antagonist. Good idea on the part of the showrunners.

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James    38

Not watching the previews, but wanted to throw in my two pence on the second ep (SPOILERS FOR THE FIRST WALKING DEAD TRADE):

 

- Glad to see that Glenn's as endearing in the show as he is in the comic. Like that they used him to show the lighter side of zombie genocide, too (200mph down the freeway!).

- Wouldn't it be nice to have a redneck who's not a despicable racist?* Or even a despicable racist who's not a redneck?

- It looks like they're going for a longer arc with the Shane/Rick/Lorie relationship, so I wonder - assuming they're going to end the series with the same punctuation as the first trade - whether Merle will take Shane's role as the dramatic shooting victim.

- Impressed with the show's ability to take a single-issue story from the comics and turn it into a proper hour of drama.

- Amused that some of the people at the camp site looked like they'd been sleeping in shit for three weeks while Lorie looked like she'd just skipped out of a tampon advert.

- Kind of wish they'd use proper squibs instead of CGI blood - it just doesn't look the same - but I guess that might make it too gory for TV.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*I know Left 4 Dead 2 already got there, but still.

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Mark    333
Wouldn't it be nice to have a redneck who's not a despicable racist?* Or even a despicable racist who's not a redneck?

Yes, it would.

 

It looks like they're going for a longer arc with the Shane/Rick/Lorie relationship, so I wonder - assuming they're going to end the series with the same punctuation as the first trade - whether Merle will take Shane's role as the dramatic shooting victim.

 

God, I hope not - that's one of the first, and best, of Kirkman's real "HOLY SHIT DID HE JUST..." moments, and it wouldn't have anything like the same impact if it was Merle being shot. I'm really curious as to how they're going to handle the Rick-Shane-Lorie thing, actually - we should get our first hints next week, when all three will presumably be reunited.

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slinker    893

The actress they got for Andrea is too old. The plot was two issues into one, but that's not how we met Andrea as I recall, but I might be wrong. I'll probably end up rereading the comic as the season goes just to see what they used and what's new. I thought this episode was almost as strong as the first. I seem to have liked it as much as anyone else who posted about it. One of the best shows I am watching, currently.

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Mark    333

Yeah, in the comic it's only Glenn who meets Rick in the city first time out (and the rain-soaked escape isn't until they go back for supplies after arriving at the camp, as I recall) - I think Andrea was already a part of the group before Rick turned up, so presumably she got a not-particularly-memorable introduction along with everybody else.

 

I'd actually assumed, from the brief scene we saw at the camp last week, that the actress playing Amy was going to turn out to be Andrea. Agreed that they've cast her a bit on the old side, but since the casting has been so spot-on across the board, I'm willing to give them the benefit of the doubt for now.

 

The show's a good way from perfect, but after two episodes I'm already enjoying it enormously, which bodes well.

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Lou K    1,084

Yeah, really fun stuff. I'll just echo everything said in the above batch of posts.

 

Made my wife watch it, even.

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Mark    333

I have to watch it twice - once alone, then once with Malin so I can warn her if anything particularly scary is going to happen. She hides behind her blanket.

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