The Walking Dead Season 6 Episode 1 Review
After what seems like an eternity The Walking Dead is back and boy is was it an action packed return for one of TV’s biggest shows.
One of the things I’ve been consistently impressed by is the multitude of storytelling styles that seem to change from season to season. Episode 1 continued this trend by jumping straight into a rip roaring, action packed episode filled with Drama and some beautifully shot flash back shots.
Rick is still very much in charge and this leads to several clashes with some of the Alexandria residents which comes to a dramatic end during this episode. It’s clear Rick is in a very vulnerable mental state and this is reflected in several key characters expressing deep concerns about his plan to protect Alexandria from the Walkers.
Keeping this as SPOILER FREE as possible for those who have yet to watch it, Episode 1 starts off with a really well shot flashback to the last series before dropping us straight into a serious threat to the people of Alexandria.
The bulk of the episode is spent dealing with this threat with the occasional flashback to keep filling in the blanks as some time has obviously passed between this episode and the finale of Season 5. A few loose threads are tied off with Tara recovering from her coma, and Father Gabriel is no longer trusted by the group following his betrayal. Glenn decides to lie about how Nicholas tried to kill him outside of Alexandria.
Back to the main story for this episode whilst Rick and Morgan leave Alexandria to bury the murderer Pete they are followed by his son Ron who they end up saving from walkers and stumble across a quarry full of thousands of Walkers just a few miles from home. The walkers are being trapped by large trucks that are slowing inching closer to the edge and after they fall the walkers will be able pass and head towards Alexandria. Rick and Morgan return home and inform the rest of the community and they plan how they are going to lead the Walkers away from Alexandria preventing a disaster.
Rick’s roll as de-facto leader is confirmed and he leads the group into action. The plan is going largely smoothly until a siren is heard coming from Alexandria which turns all the walkers in that direction despite the best efforts to keep them on track. There is no explanation as to why the siren was sounded but my guess is it has something to do with the Wolves who may have spotted the safe haven was almost empty and have taken the opportunity to strike.
The series needed a fast start if the slowly dropping viewing figures are to be believed and I’ve found the last 2 series often started far to slowly and always built up to a dramatic ending. Whilst this worked towards the end of a series the middle episodes often felt a bit dull and tended to drag a little bit. The use of Flashbacks and the action packed opening Episode hopefully shows the Producers are aware of the pacing problems and have addressed them with a higher tempo series.
An excellent return to form for The Walking Dead which i felt had slightly lost it's way over the past series. A faster paced, more action packed episode was sorely needed after the overly slow starts of the previous seasons. Rick Grimes is very much the focal point but with new Character slowly coming to the fore Series six is shaping up to be one of the best yet.