For the most dedicated fans of AMC’s The Walking Dead, this weekend must have seemed like a mid-summer godsend. The show doesn’t return until October, and while the network has released a few nuggets about next season in the way of sneak preview videos and still shots of new characters, there’s nothing like being able to turn on your TV and get hour after hour of snarling zombie gore.
So TWD‘s weekend marathon could not have come at a better time (add a sweltering heat wave, and you have another reason to stay inside in the air conditioning and watch the tube). But if fans were looking for serious answers to the questions they’ve been asking since the season 2 finale, they were asking too much. On the show’s companion talk show, The Talking Dead, showrunner Glen Mazzara, a string of executive producers and Drew Carey (who’s a big fan of the show), chatted about their favorite moments from the past two seasons and overall revealed little about what we’re likely to see in the fall.
But while there was little groundbreaking to be seen, Mazzara did set the context for the group’s arrival at the prison, which is the large structure shown over the horizon in the final shot of the season finale. Fans of the graphic novels know exactly where we’re headed when we’re going to the prison, but for those of you (like me), who haven’t read them, here’s a tiny primer. According to Mazzara, the prison is like a little isolated town, safely ensconced behind the walls and barbed wire fences that, in normal times, keep criminals in. Now they’re useful to keep zombies out.
(LIST: The Top 10 TV Shows of the 2000s)
Inside the prison, Mazzara described a place with a small town feel where everything is not what it seems. We’ve learned that this safe haven is overseen by the Governor (David Morrissey), who I’m told by reliable sources has a bit of a nasty streak. While that may be true, Mazzara explained that it’s much more complicated than that. The Governor, as head of what may be one of the last human settlements relatively safe from the zombies, feels he is the man that history will look to for saving the human race. He sees himself almost as a messiah. How in the world can the Governor coexist with Rick, who at the end of last season asserted himself as the sole leader of his group (which the producers jokingly referred to as “The Ricktatorship”)?
That question will be on the minds of fans come October, but on Sunday, all eyes were on Michonne as the producers revealed the first full clip of the new season:
There’s not a whole lot that needs to be said about that clip, except that it’s going to be a hell of a lot of fun watching Michonne this season. She is easily the most-hyped new character, with The Governor coming in a close second. If either of them can come close to living up to their buzz, we’re in for a hell of a great fall.
(LIST: The All-TIME 100 TV Shows)