It doesn’t air until March 29, and we still have a few episodes to get through between now and then, but there’s already been a great deal of talk about the season 5 finale of AMC’s hit zombie drama The Walking Dead. We know that it’s going to be a super-sized episode, clocking in at 90 minutes instead of the standard 60. That’s a lot of space to cram in heartbreaking deaths and stressful cliffhangers, and if star Norman Reedus, who plays Daryl, is to be believed, it’s going to leave some of you traumatized.
On The Walking Dead, Daryl (Norman Reedus) may come across like a tough-as-nails redneck, and while he’s certainly that to a degree, he’s also got a softer side and has many of the most earnest, heartfelt connections on AMC’s hit zombie drama. The show has had its serious emotional moments over the years, and apparently there’s one coming up in this weekend’s mid-season finale, “Coda,” that reduced Reedus to tears.
Just a heads up, if you’re not caught up on season 5 of The Walking Dead, you might want to sit this one out, as we’re going to talk about where the series is right now. We’ll try to keep the spoilers light, but they’ll be lurking around, like those pesky walkers.
Norman Reedus had an eventful Comic-Con. The Walking Dead star figured prominently in the show’s presence at the massive geek convention. During interviews he revealed some of the feelings shared by his character, Daryl Dixon, when it comes to Beth, played Emily Kinney. Because he’s a fan-favorite, and unable to randomly wander around such an event without being mobbed, he also donned a clever disguise in order to roam around and check out the festivities.
In the second half of The Walking Dead season four, the core group was forced to leave their prison safe house and splintered into various smaller factions. One of these was comprised solely of Daryl and Beth, which led to one of the best episodes of the entire year, “Still.” Not much happens from an external perspective, Reedus and Kinney are the only two credited actors, and the bulk of the action involves them getting drunk and talking.
Post-apocalyptic thrillers generally fall into two camps. In one, survivors must battle an outside threat, such as how The Walking Dead handles things. In the other, characters must simply figure out how to survive in the first place. With his atmospheric feature debut Air, director Christian Cantamessa leans towards the latter, though it’s entirely possible that an antagonistic force is out there, waiting to pounce. Almost anything is possible, really, since Air‘s first trailer delivers the bare minimum of footage that a trailer can possibly show.
Norman Reedus, an actor for whom smiling characters are a rarity, plays a caretaker named Bauer who lives in an underground bunker in a future where the Earth’s air has become toxic and unbreathable. He and his co-worker, Djimon Hounsou’s Cartwright, are tasked with waking from their deep sleep tanks twice a year to perform menial maintenance duties in their hub.
Yesterday, we got to see some truly awesome fan-play as The Hollywood Reporter kicked off one of the sweetest photo projects imaginable, reimagining some of sci-fi’s greatest characters with some of sci-fi’s most popular actors. Firefly‘s Nathan Fillion took on the role of Captain Kirk and Nerdist’s Chris Hardwick checked the time as Marty McFly. And now you can see Avatar‘s Zoe Saldana playing this genre’s most ass-kicking hero, Ellen Ripley, from James Cameron’s Aliens, among others.
Saldana gives a great interview with THR, talking about all three of her simultaneous sci-fi franchises. (She’s also in Guardians of the Galaxy and Star Trek, of course.) As such, it’s no surprise that she should earn the spot of one of cinema’s most iconic female characters, in the movie where she turns from heroine to warrior.
While Robert Kirkman wasn’t directly responsible for actor Norman Reedus turning from a Boondock Saints cult fave into a worldwide Walking Dead phenom, he did write the comic book source material. (Okay, so Daryl Dixon was never in the comic, but still.) Kirkman also isn’t personally responsible for the Reedus-starring psychological thriller Air, but he’s largely the reason why Reedus got the part and why the film got made in the first place. So you’d think Reedus would look a little more pleased to be standing around in the second official Air image seen above. But then again, he’s probably worried about his life and the fate of the world and stuff, so his sour demeanor can be forgiven.
Reedus plays Bauer, who teams up with Djimon Hounsou’s (Guardians of the Galaxy) Cartwright inside of an underground bunker while the Earth above them has been almost completely evacuated due to the air becoming toxic (for reasons that may or may not be shared during the film). This bunker is one of many created to house humanity’s more worthy specimens, who are in deep sleep tanks, meant to be woken up when the world is safe and can be repopulated. Cartwright and Bauer are awakened for their twice-a-year duties, and that’s when the secrets come out and everything starts to unravel. Do underground bunker stories ever NOT go completely wrong?