The Walking Dead 3.1 FAQ
What’s it called?
“Walking Dead” vet Ernest Dickerson (“The Wire”) directs from a teleplay credited to Glen Mazzara (“Crash: The Series”), who replaced Frank Darabont as showrunner midway through last season.
What says AMC?
“With the world growing increasingly more dangerous and Lori’s pregnancy advancing, Rick discovers a potentially safe haven. But first he must secure the premises, pushing his group to its limit.”
Hershel has a beard in that clip! Suggesting months (or maybe years if Lori’s baby miscarried or got eaten and Lori is pregnant again) have gone by since we last saw him! Are we to take it that after all that time, nobody found a gas-station map? A map with that prison we saw at the end of last season?
Apparently not. And it’s months, not years; Lori is still carrying the maybe-seed of Shane.
Can we assume the prison is the “potentially safe haven”?
Yes. As other critics have revealed, Rick and Daryl discover it pretty quickly after the scene in the clip above.
What do you mean when you say the series is back on the right track?
The long dialogue scenes that insisted on telling us what we already knew are pretty much gone in the next two epsisodes. After wandering around Hershel’s farm and chatting for the better part of last season, the characters are finally moving forward and getting things done. There’s at least one new writer aboard this season and it looks like somebody finally dropped a thick bale of cash into the production.
Do Andrea and/or Michonne catch up with Rick’s group this week?
That would be telling. I can tell you that those women appear in tonight’s episode but not in next week’s.
The big news?
Look out, “Glee,” “Smash” and “Nashville.” Tonight's episode comes equipped with its own musical number! (But don’t expect Led Zeppelin or Lady Gaga. “Mad Men” may get the Beatles and the Stones but “Walking Dead,” set 50 years later, gets an Irish folk tune.)
What else is AMC not telling us?
We get nifty, all-new opening credits, now with Darabont’s executive producer credit stripped away.
Do we meet The Governor tonight?
We do not; he does not turn up until this season’s third episode.
What about racist amputee Merle? I saw him in the Comic Con trailer!
Merle sits out the first two episodes as well.
How many episodes do we get before the next hiatus?
Eight. This year’s last episode airs Dec. 2, then the series resumes sometime in February.
The copious and compelling zombie action generally and the truly spectacular CGI mayhem in particular. Daryl hungrily plucking. Carl’s early under-sink find and his initial choice of bunkmates. The ongoing hotness of the female cast. The riot gear. Melissa McBride’s hilarious delivery of Carol’s apology. Michonne’s sidekicks. Lori’s super-creepy fear. The crazy, harrowing final four minutes.
What’s not so good?
I’m not sure why, when clearing the prison grounds of zombies, our heroes use up bullets and risk lives instead of simply impaling zombie skulls through the prison’s chain-link fences. Also, Carl is less annoying this season but he’s still pretty annoying; if producers decided to jump ahead a few years between seasons and recast, I would offer no objections.
How does it end, spoiler-boy?
9 p.m. Sunday. AMC.