The Ultimate Guide To The Walking Dead
The Walking Dead is an ongoing black-and-white American comic book series and TV series (produced in color) chronically the story of former small town police officer who awakens from a coma to discover the world is being ransacked by flesh-eating zombies. Grimes is forced to adapt to this disturbing new reality, forming a band of survivors while attempting to ward off both the living and the undead. Both the comic and TV series have won numerous awards, and there's no end in sight for either of them.
The Walking Dead Series Overview
WARNING: Spoilers Ahead
The pilot episode for The Walking Dead aired October 31, 2010 on AMC, receiving 5.35 million viewers. It opens before the zombie apocalypse, with Grimes having a shoot out with a group of criminals. After being shot, Grimes is transported to the local hospital where doctors place him a medically induced coma. Several weeks later, Grimes awakens to discover the hospital has been completely abandoned with no doctors or personnel in sight.
After leaving the hospital, Rick heads towards his home in search of his wife and son (both of whom are missing), where he encounters survivors Morgan Jones and Duane Jones. Morgan explains the situation to Rick, referring to flesh-eating reanimations as “walkers.” Rick gathers some firearms and supplies and travels to Atlanta, Georgia, where the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is rumored to have a safe zone established.
Shortly after entering the city, Rick discovers that Atlanta is flooded with walkers. A nearby survivor, Glenn Rhee, helps Rick escape, at which point the two return to a department store where part of Glenn's group is hiding. The gang safely exits the city and travels to a rural campsite on the outskirts of Atlanta where the remaining survivors of Glenn's group are residing. Among those survivors is Rick's wife Lori, his son Carl, and Rick's partner Shane Walsh.
Rick and the survivors travel back to the CDC, where they discover that all but one of the facility's staff members have been killed, fled or committed suicide. The sole CDC survivor, Dr. Edwin Jenner, tells the group that he's been working to develop a cure for the pandemic, although to no avail. As the facility's power supply dwindles, an alarm sounds, indicating a self-destruct protocol. Dr. Jenner explains that the protocol is designed to prevent deadly diseases from escaping. Jacqui and Dr. Jenner willingly stay behind while Rick and remaining survivors escape just before the countdown initiates a massive explosion.
Season 2 opens with Rick and his group escaping the CDC. With Atlanta overrun with walkers, they choose Fort Benning as their next destination. The group piles into several vehicles, heading down the interstate towards Columbus, GA. During the trip, however, they are forced stop due to the a massive pileup of abandoned vehicles stuck in the road. As a large herd of walkers approach, Carol's daughter Sophia is forced to run and hide. This leads to a chain reaction in which Carl is accidentally shot by hunter. Rick and his group find an isolated farm house owned by an elderly man named Hershel Greene. With the help of Shane, the group locates medical supplies to treat Carl's wound.
As second 2 begins to wrap up, Shane leads Rick out into the night in an attempt to murder him. Rick realizes the plot and acts first by stabbing Shane in the stomach. Shortly after falling to the group, Shane begins to rise back up, only this time he's a walker. Carl discovers the reanimated Shane, shooting him the head and saving Rick. The sound of the gunshot, however, attracts a massive herd of walkers who change their trajectory towards the farmhouse. Jimmy and Patricia are killed during the attack, while the remaining survivors regroup and make camp in the woods. Season 2 ends as the camera pans out, revealing a large prison in the background.
Season 3 takes place almost entirely in the prison. Rick and his group eliminate the walkers inhabiting the prison and turn it into their home. During the first episode, Hershel is bitten in the ankle by a walker, forcing Rick to cut off his leg to prevent the disease from spreading. Lori is also killed during the operation, at which point Carl is forced to shoot her so she doesn't turn into a walker. While Lori dies during the operation, her son Judith survives.
Michonne and Andrea didn't leave the farm with Rick and his group. The duo are hiding in the woods when a military-style group picks them up, taking them to the quaint town of Woodbury. Here, they discover the leader is man named The Governor. Michonne is wary of The Governor and his intentions, but Andrea views Woodbury as a safe haven. Meanwhile, Carl encounters another group of survivors at the prison, led by Sasha and Tyreese. Carl allows them to enter the prison for shelter.
Hoping to settle the grievances between the two groups, Andrea arranges a meting between Rick and The Governor. However, Andrea learns that The Governor was planning to betray Rick and murder his group, at which point she attempts to escape. The Governor captures her, ordering his henchman Milton to kill her. When Milton refuses, The Governor stabs him, tossing his fatally injured body into the locked room with Andrea. The Governor and his group arm themselves and head towards the prison to kill Rick and the survivors. Rick had planned an ambush, however, repelling the attack. Season 3 ends with The Governor murdering most of his own people as Rick and his group return back to the prison.
The Walking Dead takes place in Georgia, with a combination of rural countryside landscape and urban city settings. Critics have praised the show's producers for creating an engrossing story that's intensified with the perfect setting. From backwoods creeks and old worn-down churches to local towns, villages and prisons, the setting brings a unique element to the show. Of course, there's still plenty of story left to be told in The Walking Dead, so who knows where Rick and the gang will head to next.
Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes
In an interview with the Telegraph, Andrew Lincoln said taking the role of Rick Grimes in The Walking Dead was a “leap of faith.” The now 41-year-old U.K. native said he didn't even read the script. After seeing AMC at the top, along with the show's title, he jumped on board.
“But don’t get me wrong – it’s always a leap of faith. When I first got the script… In fact, even the breakdown before the script… It said AMC at the top, and I was thrilled, ’cause I loved Breaking Bad and Mad Men. And then it just said: The Walking Dead. And I thought, ‘That’s a great title!’ And then it said, ‘zombie survival horror’. And I just phoned up my agent and said, ‘Are you kidding?’ And then I realized who was involved [writer-director of The Shawshank Redemption]. And I read the first episode and I loved it. It was always pitched to me as Lord of the Flies,” said Lincoln.
To prepare for this career-changing, or should I say life-changing role, Lincoln reportedly watched films of the late American actor Gary Cooper, who was known for his role in the 1952 western film High Noon. Lincoln also gained inspiration by watching the critically acclaimed AMC crime-drama series Breaking Bad. I think it's safe to say AMC made the right decision by casting Andrew Lincoln to play Rick Grimes, because he's won numerous awards for his portrayal of the deputy-turned-zombie-apocalypse survivor, including the 2012 Satellite Award for Best Cast, and 2014 People's Choice Awards for Favorite TV Anti-Hero.
Are you a fan of The Walking Dead? Let us know in the comments section below!
For the best Walking Dead t-shirts click the link here -