With the release of the new Season 6 trailer from Comic-Con this past weekend, fans of The Walking Dead got their eyes ‘sploded with all the new mayhem and problems that will be plaguing Rick and the citizens of Alexandria later this year. But sometimes new isn’t always the goal, and viewers will apparently be spending quite a bit of time in the past when next season shambles around.
At the Walking Dead panel, showrunner Scott Gimple was asked if the upcoming season was going feature many flashbacks, a question that he initially denied. And then, a short time later, he inexplicably reversed his answer and raised more questions (as well as laughter).
There will actually be a whole lot of flashbacks in the first half of the season. And in fact, I’m working on an episode right now that’s entirely a flashback, but I just forget things in front of 7,000 people.
I wonder what else he forgot to tell us in the audience, but whatever information remains unrevealed, this confirmation of multiple flashbacks could go in two obvious directions, with possible surprise angles creeping in. First, Gimple and Kirkman definitely owe audiences a concrete idea of what Morgan has been up to in his time before tracking Rick’s group down, and what changed him from grief-stricken to cucumber calm. We want to know who was mentoring him during that period, and we’d be damned fine with it being Paul “Jesus” Monroe from the comics. But even if it’s someone else, we still want to spend more time with Morgan’s personality before we see him and Rick coming to blows over morals and leadership and other dude-bro stuff. .
It also remains to be seen what happened with Alexander Davidson, the mysterious founder of Alexandria that was cast out of the community (along with two others) after some unspeakable acts. It was previously revealed that the creative team would be filling in some story background that Kirkman didn’t spend much time with in the comics, and Davidson’s arc would be ideal for that set-up. Clue viewers in on his reign of madness or whatever got people spooked, and then tie his story into whichever upcoming mega-threat the characters will be facing. Should they go this route, he’ll hopefully be a standout source of monstrous behavior. Kirkman had to have some warped ideas in his head about this guy’s rise to exile.
We’ve gotten several looks back into characters’ pasts over the years, most memorably with the extended vacation into the life of The Governor, and it sounds like that’ll be the structure of the wholly focused episode Gimple is working on. What if half of it is of a sweet time between Rick and Lori, and the other half is of Michonne and her boyfriend Mike, and then the last minute is present day, and Rick and Michonne boning? Not the most subtle path to love.
Season 6 of The Walking Dead will premiere on AMC on Sunday, October 11. Hang the katana over the mantle and mark your calendar.