The second half of season 5 of The Walking Dead is quickly shuffling our way (it’ll be here before you know it), but in the meantime we’ve been hearing a number of intriguing new details about the upcoming companion series, Cobalt. The other day we saw some excerpts from the script of the first episode, which shed some light on the setting and plot, and now there’s even more to learn.
Just a heads up, there may be some potential spoilers for Cobalt beyond this point.
Bleeding Cool got their hands on a copy of the script of the pilot episode, reportedly titled “Fear the Walking Dead.” The pages have since been taken down, but the report still talks about what the series will look like. What we’ve seen and been told thus far indicates that the new series takes place closer to the beginning of zombie outbreak than the flagship show. One scene describes characters watching footage, probably news reports, of undead attacks on an iPad, and the series reportedly toys with what we already know from watching The Walking Dead. “It plays the fact that we, the audience, know far more about what’s going on than anything else does and keeps teasing us toward the inevitable, in much the same way that Gotham does, but in the knowledge that it’s going to be over far sooner.”
We do know that the main group of characters is a family unit, or at least a close approximation thereof. There’s Sean Cabrera (Cliff Curtis), Nancy Tompkins (Kim Dickens), and her two teenage children, Nick (Frank Dillane) and Ashley (Alycia Debnam Carey). At least that’s what we’ve been calling them up to this point. In the script, they have different names and are described as:
a mother and a soon-to-be-stepfather, teachers Madison and Travis, and their older teenage children, Alicia and Ian, Travis’ ex Liza and their teenage son Christopher, in a family about to break apart. Drugs, illness, self-harm, set in Los Angeles, this is not so much a nuclear family as a dirty bomb. Rick’s family were torn apart, this family are there from the beginning.
From this account, the adventures of this family would have been pretty damn interesting to follow even if there was no zombie apocalypse to contend with. It’s not uncommon for characters to change names, and we’ve been basing what we call them on what it said in a casting call that surfaced a while back.
Easily the biggest change from The Walking Dead to Cobalt is going to be the setting. Instead of rural Georgia, the action goes down in Los Angeles, and that urban locale is definitely going to show a different side of this world. This is something that fans have been wanting for quite some time. We know what the its like for one small group of survivors on the road in the southeastern region of the country, but we have no clue what’s going on elsewhere. This gives us the opportunity to find out what the situation is like in other places and see how other people manage to survive, or not survive as the case may be.
Cobalt is expected to debut sometime next fall, while season 5 of The Walking Dead returns Sunday, February 8.