Fear The Walking Dead

Kayla Trail

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 AMC’s “Fear the Walking Dead” broke records last Sunday night, raking in 10 million viewers for the season premiere. 

 The six-episode season started off with suspense, and is sure to unravel  much more as writer and creator, Robert Kirkman, explains the fruition of the zombie apocalypse. 

 The series, meant to be a prequel to AMC’s well-known TV show, “The Walking Dead,” takes place in Los Angeles right at the beginning of the apocalypse. The dysfunctional family that the show is based around involves mother, Madison, and her two children, 18-year-old Nick (played by Harry Potter’s Frank Dillane,) and daughter, Alicia, who is a senior in high school. Madison is dating Travis, a teacher at the same high school that Madison counsels at. 

 As the episode begins, it starts with Nick waking up disoriented in a rundown church, coming off his heroin high from the previous night. Nick walks around trying to find his girlfriend and friends and when he finally discovers them, two of them are dead and his girlfriend is seen crouched over one of Nick’s friends, eating his flesh.  As his girlfriend stands up, noticing that someone else is in the room, she has blood running down her face and what appears to be a spear through her chest as she walks towards Nick. Convinced he is tripping off laced heroin, Nick sprints out of the church and into the street where he gets hit by a car sending him into the hospital. 

 At the high school whereMadison and Travis work, the principal has been saying how a lot of students have been out lately with what appears to be the “flu.” However, all fans of “The Walking Dead” know that they are falling ill with the sickness that causes them to become “walkers” (a.k.a. zombies).

 As Madison walks into class she discovers a knife in a students pocket. Instead of telling and getting him in trouble she asks the student, Tobias, to come into her office. Assuming there is a student who is bullying Tobias, Madison tries comforting him, saying he will be safe. Tobias, who somehow knows of the impending doom, disagrees, and indirectly warns Madison of a danger that is coming at a rapid pace and that everyone needs to be able to protect themselves. 

 Fans of “The Walking Dead” are already knowledgeable when it comes to zombies, how to protect against them and how to survive based off of what we have seen Rick Grimes and the gang do for the past five seasons. In an interview with the New York Times, creator Kirkman said he is excited for viewers to have the upper hand in this prequel.

 “As writers we’re always playing with the audience’s expectations,” Kirkman said. “I think with ‘Fear the Walking Dead’ we use them to great effect. There’s a tension that will come from the audience knowing more about the rules of this world than our characters do, and that makes our earlier episodes extremely suspenseful in a way that wouldn’t be if that knowledge wasn’t there.”

 “Fear the Walking Dead” slowly but surely inches its way into the future of the apocalypse as word gets around Los Angeles that something is spreading. A news stations airs what appears to be a police chase that ends with the suspect being shot multiple times, collapsing to the ground, but standing back up as if he were indestructible. As fear spreads throughout the town, Madison starts to panic and pulls her daughter out of school while searching for her son Nick, who has escaped the hospital in hopes of finding out why he was given laced heroin (which clearly he was not, he just refuses to believe what he saw was real.)  

 Madison, Travis and Nick are all forced to face reality when a friend of Nick’s, Calvin, who is also his drug dealer is accidentally shot and killed. Nick confesses the accidental murder to Madison and Travis, but when they return to the scene of the crime they are confronted with a dead Calvin who is walking and then makes an effort to attack Madison. Nick, who is in a truck waiting, hops in the drivers seat and protects his mother from Calvin, who is not “dying” no matter how hard he tries, showing them all the beginning of a very deadly and dangerous future. The first season of “Fear the Walking Dead” will end a week before season six of “The Walking Dead” premiers. The prequel will return for a full 12-episode season in 2016.