Did ‘The Walking Dead’ live up to the hype?

Last night was the much anticipated premiere of AMC’s new miniseries adapting the zombie apocalypse genre for the small screen, The Walking Dead.

As a die-hard zombie media consumer, I must admit to being among those chomping at the bit at the prospect of a weekly zombie fix. And despite the obvious comparisons (some might say distracting) to the neo-zombie touchstone film 28 Days Later, it looks like The Walking Dead is going to stand up on its own to recent, high profile zombie-related films. One of the first things noticeable about the miniseries is pacing- zombie fans are used to a one and a half to two hour storyline, whereas The Walking Dead will feature at least six episodes at an hour each.

Also like 28 Days Later, the series bypasses the initial apocalypse-related panic with a story told only in ruined streets and abandoned homes. Viewers, like the lead character, are left to deduce the details of world’s end in this fashion, and frustratingly, sheriff’s deputy Rick Grimes asks no questions in this regard. The last notable similarity to Danny Boyle’s take on zombies was the “shooting a kid as a pivotal moment in the lead character’s acceptance of the new zombie reality” trope. While fans have seen it before, Grimes’ “putting down” a little girl in bunny slippers was just as effective as the Cillian Murphy in the rest stop with the baseball bat version from 28 Days Later. (Creator Robert Kirkman says the parallels are all coincidental.)

Overall, the series was visually impressive and seemed to lay a solid foundation for the upcoming installations. Will you continue watching The Walking Dead, and more importantly, are zombies the new vampires?