Season four of AMC’s The Walking Dead ended with Rick Grimes declaring, “They’re screwing with the wrong people.” A trailer for Season five released from San Diego Comic-Con (via Facebook) puts those words to the test with action-packed sequences that suggest a different direction from the slower pace of previous seasons.
At a Comic-Con panel for The Walking Dead, co-creator Robert Kirkman and Executive Producer Gale Anne Heard announced that season five would debut on October 12 at 9 p.m. ET (via Deadline). They were joined on the panel by actors Andrew Lincoln, Norman Reedus, Steven Yeun, Lauren Cohan, Danai Gurira, Melissa McBride, Chad Coleman and Michael Cudlitz. The entire panel was hosted by Talking Dead host Chris Hardwick.
Kirkman promised that this will be the season that is “going to be pretty close to the comics.” There have already been major character deviations in the show from the comics so it will be interesting to see how the next season of The Walking Dead juggles the characters around to fill important plot points.
Showrunner Scott Gimple previously discussed how the upcoming season will build on the success of season four and deal with changes in the comic.
“It’s not mirroring [the previous season] completely… The challenge of the show is every eight episodes, it’s a whole new show. I will say that there may be some slightly familiar structural turns. But for the most part, it is going to be brand new versions of the comic story,” Gimple explained.
The trailer makes it explicitly clear that Grimes and company are now headed towards Washington D.C. with the hopes of bringing the cure to the world’s undead problem to people who can do something about it. Also, there’s enough zombie gore in the trailer alone to send some stomach’s turning and a couple of events that at first appear directly related to the comic.
The Walking Dead ended last season with a monster 15.7 million watching, which was only slightly off the 16.1 million who watched the season premiere. Both were records for a cable television show premiere and finale. Season five appears poised to hit the same numbers with the promise of a more intense and bloody run of episodes.
As in previous seasons, the first eight episodes will run through December 2014. The final eight episodes will then debut in February 2015. Each episode will be followed by Chris Hardwick’s Talking Dead talk-show format where those involved with the series get together and discuss the just aired event.
[Image via The Walking Dead season 5 trailer]