Saturday, November 19, 2016

Why I'm watching The Walking Dead again.

Why I'm watching The Walking Dead again.

Let's go back a bit. 2010 to be exact. I was living at school in PA and it was Halloween night. More than twenty of my friends all squeezed into the apartment I was living in with my roommates to watch this show that was getting hyped. People were sitting, standing, finding any floor space possible to watch this brief first episode of what was supposed to be this huge epic TV show featuring zombies. A TV show that was based off a series of very popular graphic novels that had a huge fan following. A TV show that was being produced by some huge talent, and was supposed to have the feel of a mix between a Stephen King and George A. Romero story.

This was The Walking Dead.

I watched the entire first season at school and highly enjoyed the brief episode run. The following year I began falling behind but still enjoyed the episodes I did catch and was floored over the mid-season finale. I was lucky enough to have staffed several HorrorHound shows and even got to meet some of the actors. Yep, met Mr. Reedus long before he was popular and his lines were out the door. I liked the show, but I'll admit I didn't love it. By the time season three rolled around I tried to follow the show as much as possible every week. Sadly it being on at 9 on Sundays and the fact I'm a total old lady made it hard to watch. (Sorry guys, I'm not fancy and don't have on demand.) Still, I would say season 3 is what season I followed the closest and it wasn't long before I was rolling my eyes at the governor storyline, how unlikeable and annoying these characters had become, and how down right drawn out these plots were becoming. Maybe it was because I worked these conventions and got super annoyed by the fans, or maybe it's because I honestly felt nothing for these characters. The villains were annoying and seemed like cry babies, the characters were on my last nerve, and I felt as if any luster these stories once had were truly starting to fade fast. In one season you were lucky to get maybe 1-3 really awesome episodes while the rest were morning, drawn out with people I just couldn't connect with. Season 5 as well as 5 I felt suffered the same fate and I just truly stopped watching. The few times I did was because of the epic KNB makeup and that was it. Like I said, and I can't stress enough...if you don't feel sorry for these characters and don't feel a connection you won't care what happens to them. The seasons had highlights, but nothing special in my eyes.

Time passed and last winter happened.

Rumors were flying about this new villain named Negan coming onboard. We felt with the governor (who's final episode I must admit was pretty decent) the people of Terminus (I did enjoy the tagline "All those who arrive will survive." but nothing really seemed to hit home. I've always loved a great bad guy since they are ten times more interesting. This suddenly felt like a soap opera with a zombie thrown in once and a while. With characters I didn't like I would maybe, and I stress maybe watch one to two episodes were season. I prayed it would pick up since what could have been an epic amazing show turned into a total snooze fest.

Well my prayers were answered when I heard about this villain who I guess had been expected for some time now from the graphic novels. 


The rumors were that actor Jeffery Dean Morgan (Supernatural, Watchmen) would be playing him. Fan made art floated around, and right away these rumors were addressed as facts. I decided to jump back on the wagon for the show and play catch up so I started watching season 6. One of the first episodes I re-watched was the season finale and couldn't believe how good it was. It seemed as if a fire had been lit underneath this show's ass and it was amazing. The show yes did slow down somewhat, but the build up for the reveal of Negan was huge. I couldn't wait. Beyond hyped, I couldn't wait. I started looking back on the graphic novels, and began watching it with my sister. When the reveal happened it was everything I wanted and then some. 

Mr. Morgan was born to play this role. 

You could tell in the one scene he appeared in at the end of season 6 that he was having fun with it, and completely stole the show. I loved the few episodes before when Rick and his team killed his men at the base and how one tries to escape on a bike dressed exactly like Negan from the comic books. When the reveal finally happened everyone was on the edge of their seats since in the graphic novels Negan beats someone to death with his barb wired wrapped baseball bat Lucille. In the comics it was Glen (who I honestly, and I may be a complete asshole for saying, didn't care about at all.) and his death was teased about several times during this season. Here, for the first time in years I couldn't stop watching an episode of a TV show. Tons, and I mean tons of my friends all couldn't wait to see what was going to happen. The suspense was killing all of us and...

Biggest cop out e-v-e-r. As angry as I was over this summer I did have to admit the suspense was half the fun. It had been years since audiences had such a great cliffhanger. We were in today's age of the internet and spoilers far away from the guessing game like Who Shot JR? Or Who Murdered Laura Palmer? When the season premiered it was everything we could of asked more and then some. Not only did we lose a strong likable character, they also killed a fan favorite (not mine personally) but still the shock value and gross stomach turning effects used was worth it all. Between that, and Negan's taunting and legit taking Rick's group over was everything I wanted and then some. Maybe I'm sick and twisted, and maybe it's because I adore Jeffery Dean Morgan (has been a favorite of mine for years) I'm on Negan's side. I feel he's the one to whip these characters into shape, and you can't help but like him dispute the terrible things he does. The episodes without him seem boring beyond belief and I have a feeling this season it will be off and on. I can only hope this very colorful villain will continue raising Hell and keeping this going for a very long time. I can only hope that he'll be around for a few seasons. The villain/bad guy is always more interesting. Honestly think about it. That's 99% why I love James Bond movies. It's always the villain that I side with. With plenty of rich material for this character, and the fact he's not some super hero. We have a skinny older middle aged man, dressed in a leather jacket, red scarf, and baseball bat. I haven't been so excited for a head bashing since Inglorious Bastards! I hate to say it, but with a show I was once annoyed with, I'm now a total poser loving it for one reason and one reason only. Here's to hoping that this season kicks into overdrive and continues to deliver. Just last week my sister and her husband joined me to meet Jeffery Dean Morgan for a photo op. The wait was well worth it and now I can say I've met the man who restored my faith in what I believed was a show that was running out of steam. A hard task to do for it being in it's 6th season!

What can I say? As someone who HATED this show, I'm now 100% on board.

Team Negan all the way!

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