November 1st, 2010
10:45 AM ET
Editor's Note: If you don't like spoilers of any kind, you should probably stop reading now.
Just a few minutes into Sunday night's premiere of "The Walking Dead," director/executive producer Frank Darabont made sure you knew exactly what you were in for.
After coming upon a young girl-turned-zombie, our hero, Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln), dispatched her with a bullet to the head.
At that point, either you're along for the ride or you're not.
For those who stayed tuned in (seeing as it was Halloween night, I'd wager to guess that was most people), they saw what I think was the most engrossing premiere episode of any new show this season. A good deal of the show's effectiveness rests on actor Lincoln's shoulders, and thankfully, he's excellent here as a police officer who awakens from a coma in the aftermath of a zombie apocalypse. Even better than Lincoln, however, was Lennie James as Morgan.
Morgan takes Rick in, along with his son, and explains to him everything that's happened since he was hospitalized. Morgan's wife has become a zombie, and the scene where he struggles over whether or not to put her out of her misery was extremely gripping (and Rick's apology to a zombie woman - who is literally a shell of a person - before shooting her was extraordinary as well).
Meanwhile, the goings-on at a camp near Atlanta - where Rick's family and his former partner, Shane, are located - so far isn't terribly interesting (including the fact that his wife Lori has begun a romantic relationship with Shane).
The scene where Rick rides a horse along the interstate towards Atlanta only to run into - Han Solo-style - a swarm of zombies made for some impressive visuals, although Atlanta residents like myself might find them slightly more compelling than others.
If nothing else, this show should be a shoo-in for an Emmy nomination in the makeup category, but it won't necessarily appeal to some of AMC's "Mad Men" audience. At the same time, fans of the comic book the show is based on - and straight-up horror fans - are going to have a blast watching the rest of the season. I'm looking forward to it as well.
Did you catch "The Walking Dead"? Did it live up to your expectations, and will you keep watching? Share your video iReport here or comment below.
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