AMC is once again getting ready to unleash a swarm of rotting corpses on your TVs in the form of their hit zombie drama The Walking Dead. The biggest show on television, when it returns for season 5 in mid-October, that doesn’t show any signs of abating or even slowing down at all. The network has now released a handful of new still images that show off most of the main cast of characters.
The last half of season 4 of The Walking Dead not only delivered the best episodes of the series to date, and the strongest narrative arc we’ve seen, but it ended on one hell of a cliffhanger. While there is usually a gap of time between the events of one season to the beginning of the next, that’s not going to be possible this time around, and we’ve been told that they plan to “hit the ground running” in season 5. Hopefully they’ll be able to maintain the momentum the built up, not just with the story itself, but when it comes to character growth.
First up is the leader of the rag tag gang of zombie apocalypse survivors, Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln). At the end of season 4, he’s closer to becoming the person he is in Robert Kirkman’s comics than ever before, and that has to make long time fans smile, or at least make a stern, grim happy face.
The sexuality of Daryl Dixon (Norman Reedus), Rick’s right hand man, has been a hot topic of conversation lately, but gay or straight, he’s still the best character on the show, despite the fact that he doesn’t even appear in the source material.
And regardless of his sexual orientation, Daryl is close with Carol (Melissa McBride), and after a long time apart, they’re going to be reunited at last.
Of all the characters who made big strides in the final eight episodes of season 4, no one’s change was quite as drastic as Michonne’s (Danai Gurira). In the comics she’s quiet and keeps to herself, but is not silent. For the first season and half on the series she was practically a mute, and her development consisted primarily of scowling and not saying a word when a few sentences would have averted a great deal of pain and bloodshed. She’s such a fantastic character in the comics, and she’s finally showing glimpses of becoming that on the series, we like where she is headed.
And then there’s Maggie (Lauren Cohan)…
…and where there’s a Maggie, Glen (Steven Yeun) is never far behind.
Finally, there’s this shot that I kind of love. Rick looks grizzled, angry, and more than a wee bit inane. We’ve seem him come close to losing his grip on reality before (most notably in the wake of his wife’s death), and if this photo is any indication, maybe he’s inching ever closer to that precipice than he has been. However it turns out, we like what they’re going for here.
Season 5 of The Walking Dead premieres on AMC on Sunday, October 12.