So with the title of my blog, I'd feel remiss if I didn't have the occasional post about zombies. With that, one of the major zombie pop culture touchstones lately has been AMC's The Walking Dead. Based on the long-running comic series, the tv show just ended the first half of it's second season, which is set to return February 12th.
I have to say, the very first episode of this show was fantastic. Absolutely fantastic. Unfortunately, it seemed like the rest of season 1 after that was a bit of a let down. Not necessarily because it was bad, just because the premiere was that good. Season 2 on the other hand, so far, has been bad.
I believe part of the reason for this was ongoing budget disputes between the showrunners and AMC, which led to Frank Darabont leaving the show. The money issue seems to have been keyed on Mad Men getting new contracts, and the AMC execs subsequently tightening their belts through the rest of the network. Darabont, if you don't know, is primarily a film director best known for helming the best Stephen King adaptations (Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile, The Mist). He really brought a cinematic eye to the small screen, evident in the 2-part premiere. When he left, many of the other core writers from season 1 were let go. The results in season 2 so far have been fewer locations, fewer zombies, and an agonizingly long arc involving searching for a missing girl, Sophia. There was a payoff at the midseason finale, but somewhat dampened by the fact that every viewer just wanted the group to find the girl dead by about the 3rd episode in.
Now I say that the second season has only been bad so far. Maybe the producers have backloaded the budget to the second half of the season, so we can get a different exciting location. (I'm really tired of the farm and the woods). For the show's sake I hope this is the case, otherwise I might bail on the show entirely.
But I recently saw this article which described Darabont's plans for the season 2 opener ( a little long but worth the read):
Here's a video interview from the article with Sam Witwer (most recently, SciFi's[refuse to call it SyFy] Being Human):
Now this really is a shame because that idea sounds awesome. So if want to find out how to ruin a great show and slowly kill its viewership, take notes from AMC.
But keep watching for now... I guess... maybe... It can't get any worse right?