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Spoilery Walking Dead stuff ahead.
Fans were both super excited and super pissed when The Walking Dead ended its Season 6 midseason finale just as the intensity was hitting a fever pitch, with Rick & Co. attempting to escape the horde of walkers swarming through Alexandria’s streets. Thankfully for those who worried the show might continue the time-and-place jaunting of the last eight episodes or go the “months later” route, viewers will be dropped right back into the scene when the show returns. According to comic creator Robert Kirkman:
We pick up right in that moment. Alexandria is overrun. Rick and the kids are all covered in guts trying to get through the crowd. Everyone is where we last saw them, and things get worse from there.
I want the midseason premiere to start on just a black screen with Sam’s whiny voice echoing over it, and then snap right to that little frightened bastard getting his face eaten off. Something almost like that will definitely happen, as there will be an immediacy to the carnage and mayhem that follows Sam calling out for his mom. The new key art released – which also teases Deanna’s return – shows Carl’s hand getting grabbed, which plays into the comic moment this scene is based on. Then out comes Rick’s hatchet, and things get ugly.
This botched escape-turned-shitfest is the perfect place to begin the second batch of Season 6 episodes, as it sets off several character narratives, and it’s the inciting incident for some survivors to look and travel beyond Alexandria. Not that the safe haven will be left behind for good or anything. That place will look spankin’ new with a fresh splash of paint, a bit of landscaping, and the removal of hundreds, if not thousands, of corpses.
Here’s what Kirkman told EW about the future of Alexandria following the premiere’s bloodbath.
It comes back to those plans of rebuilding Alexandria. Assuming some people survive, and it’s a good bet that some do because they’ve already talked in the midseason finale about not planning on leaving Alexandria. It’s a bump in the road, but there’s something special there, and they can turn this into an anchor that they can build upon…And from there, there will be other things that expand their world in new and terrifying ways.
We’re hoping to see a lot of things when Season 6 returns, including the introduction of new characters, good and bad, as well as the introduction of the next survivor community. But I guess I hadn’t yet thought about where the lines would be drawn over who would remain in Alexandria and who would move on, and how that would play into these relationships. I mean, I know how it goes in the comics, but that’ll be another good way for Kirkman and showrunner Scott Gimple to add change to the adaptation.
Get ready to watch some bodies fall when The Walking Dead returns to AMC on Sunday, February 14, for the remainder of Season 6. To see when everything else is premiering and returning in the next few months, check out our midseason TV schedule.