NYCC 2011: The Walking Dead

What would you do in the aftermath of the zombie apocalypse?

Based on Robert’s Kirkman’s popular comic series, The Walking Dead follows a group of people who have survived a zombie apocalypse.  The first season of the show was nominated for several awards – including Golden Globe and Emmy nominations – and won an Emmy for the amazing prosthetic makeup used to create the zombies.  Season Two premieres in the US on AMC tonight.

I’ll admit it – I don’t do zombies.  They seriously freak me out.  But I was definitely in the minority in the packed IGN theater, which was full of zombie-loving fans.  The panelists were: Robert Kirkman, Gale Anne Hurd, Greg Nicotero, Chandler Riggs (Carl), Norman Reedus (Daryl), John Bernthal (Shane), Laurie Holden (Andrea), Steven Yuen (Glenn) and Lauren Cohan (Maggie – new in Season 2).

The crowd was shown a sneak peek from the new season, a clip where the survivors are trying to hide from a wave of zombies.  In the short clip, there was enough blood, gore and zombie killing to last me a lifetime.  But the crowd ate it up.  Here are some highlights from the panel, which was moderated by Chris Hardwick:

  • Season Two, which premieres on October 16th on AMC, will have 13 episodes as opposed to 6, as it did in Season One;
  • Robert Kirkman said that all of the crazy things we saw last year only get bigger and better in Season Two;
  • Laurie Holden said that the zombies on the show are really scary, even though everyone knows they’re not real – they all went to zombie school (which is a real thing, apparently);
  • Lauren Cohan is starring as Maggie, a new character for Season Two, and a love interest for Glenn;
  • fans of the comic book will be happy with the new season and the Hershel’s farm story line (and thus the introduction of Maggie and Glenn);
  • Robert Kirkman says that while the zombies get better and craftier, they won’t be evolving – he’s not interested in having them develop new capabilities or mutating them in any way.
  • Chris Hardwick gave everyone a very sound piece of advice – never have unprotected sex with a zombie.
  • In describing Daryl, Norman Reedus called him emotionally damaged, saying that he just needs a hug, but if you try to give him one, he’ll probably stab you.
The cast was very engaging and animated, and obviously appreciative of the fans’ reception.  I can’t say I’ll ever watch the show, but I thought the panel was really great.  Here are a few pictures:
Chris Hardwick with Robert Kirkman, Gale Anne Hurd, and Greg Nicotero:
Chandler Riggs documenting the event:
Chandler Riggs hamming it up for the camera:
Lauren Cohan, Steven Yuen, Laurie Holden and John Bernthal:

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