TV Review: The Walking Dead – “Seed” Season Premiere
by Matthew Durham
AMC is famously renowned by its excellent original series’. The awards primarily go to Breaking Bad and Mad Men. But more infamously they are known with having short seasons usually between 7 and 14 episodes. So it’s been awhile since we’ve had a good dose of zombies.
The Walking Dead is the best show about zombies to ever hit television. Okay, so they aren’t really competing against any other show; that makes them original. Seriously ever since George A. Romero’s ingenious Night of the Living Dead the zombie genre has been a growing fad and has a strong fan base, myself included.
For some people when watching a show or movie about zombies they are only looking for one thing: Bloody violence, people being torn apart, and zombies being massacred in the hundreds. More or less the action than the violence. The other margin of zombie fans look for the complexities of the situation. How are these people going to survive this? What new methods are they going to take? How are they going to remain mentally stable? Zombie films/ shows like this often receive criticism for slow pacing and not enough zombie-killing.
I have seen The Walking Dead receive criticisms on both ends, but this Season 3 return proves to be an amazing balance of crazy-zombie survival action and character study. This episode is The Walking Dead at its best. Over the break after last season I read the first compendium of graphics novels of The Walking Dead and I really enjoyed it and plan to read the second compendium upon release.
It’s no secret that the show doesn’t follow its source material very closely, and without spoiling anything I will say that almost half of the compendium took place where the characters are now, so will they be here for two seasons? Doubtful, because they casted a character who appears in the last fourth of the book.
At this point in the television show characters have grown together but are notably fatigued. Our gang of protagonists have grown weary, but remain hopeful. Rick has always been the leader, but now he has started dictating the group which I think is rightfully so considering the group members got them into a lot of bullshit on the farm.
However, this has drawn Rick away from Lori his pregnant wife. You can tell Rick is doing everything for her and the baby, but he is still infuriated by her affairs and lack of commitment. From Lori’s perspective though Rick has a responsibility to her, their son Carl and the unborn child and he continuously puts himself in high-stakes risk. It’s a complicated relationship.
All of our sub-characters seem to be developing more and more with Carl getting a relationship with Hershel’s youngest (in the book the relationship was with Sophie, but she was killed off mid-Season 2) and Darryl developing a relationship with Carol. Meanwhile, away from the prison we see a very sick Andrea being protected by comic-favorite Michone.
The series seems to be drawing more from the source material than previously, but still acting with caution when it comes to favorable characters and situations. The comic contained stuff too heavy for television and characters were constantly coming in and out. The comic is a constant bloodbath that doesn’t develop characters nearly as well as the television show.
The Walking Dead is an immensely popular television series, and the premiere of season 3 has something for all the shows critical fan base. Probably one of the better shows in the series with the juxtaposition of hopelessness and hopefulness and plenty off helpings of zombie slaughter and action.
Final Score: 4.5/5