Saturday 20 July 2013

The Walking Dead Season 4 Comic-Con Trailer Analysis & 5 New Memes...

See more Walking Dead memes here.

At last, the 2013 Comic-Con is here, and coming with it is the Season 4 trailer for The Walking Dead; in another fast-moving sneak-peak, let's delve in deeper and pick some things out.

N.B. Click on each image for FULL SIZE.

Click to Enlarge: It's that time of year again...

Click “READ MORE” below for analysis, screenshots, and memes...

Starting with a raid on a “Big Spot” all-in-one chain store, the bigger and bolder Team Prison are now seasoned scavengers. They have pre-planned formations and have customised their own armour for protection.

The prison has also been turned into a farm with crops, and even animals – pigs for meat, as well as horses for work and a mode of transport – what's not to love about Michonne on a horse?

New defences have been erected – large wooden beams have been sharpened to skewer unsuspecting walkers near the newly-crafted entrance (after it was smashed-down by Team Woodbury – although that same vehicle has been reused, as glimpsed in one shot). Also of note is that there are a range of sharp weapons lined up on the fences, ready for action.

Speaking of which, in a scene that could get British tabloid reactionaries into a frothy lather of out-of-context rage, Carol is shown running a knife-training class for the children in the group; proper use and safety are the key lessons. The Dark Knight caused controversy in some corners of the British media for its depiction of knives: in the UK, knives are more of a day-to-day concern than guns, which are generally banned except for strictly licensed hunting purposes. There might be no fuss at all, but this part might ruffle a few feathers in the chip-paper rags of tomorrow – only time will tell.

Massacre in D Block:
There were some shocking moments of violence early on in the prison arc in the comics, and there is the suggestion that a version of this will be coming to the show. “Someone attacked the cell block” / “We've got to find who did this” / “They're not going anywhere, we'll find them” - it would seem likely that the attack came from within – is there something dark-of-the-mind about one of the ex-Woodburyites?

We just lost twelve of our own, two who were killed in cold blood” - again, the suggestion that there was a double murder committed by someone on the inside, who then potentially unleashed some walkers on their fellow prison-dwellers. Also note that the attack takes place in D Block, which must be where they housed the new additions to their group after 3x16 - the original members of Team Prison moved into C Block - so might this mean that the big names of the group are safe from this particular tragedy?

The Walker Problem:
Following season 3's “Fight the dead, fear the living” theme, the walkers are hitting back in a big way – greater numbers of them are swarming the fences, which begin to fall under the weight of their collective mass. What's more, it appears that somebody has been feeding rats to the walkers to attract them – perhaps this is also the handiwork of the killer inside. A long shot could be that it's The Governor toying with the much larger Team Prison – but there was no mention at all of the one-eyed nutter during this trailer – where is he? When is he coming back, and how?

Moving On:
In addition to a bunch of former Woodbury residents – many of them potential 'red shirts', you'd imagine – we're getting a new character in the form of Bob Stookey. Readers of The Walking Dead will be familiar with him, so we'll see how he stacks up against his literary counterpart, who was a military man with a drinking problem.

You gotta calm down.” A big part of the comics was the clash of personalities between Rick and Tyreese, and we see they have a right old punch up here (Tyreese is later spotted with a swollen left eye) – but what might have set Tyreese off? We see him looking in shock at something on the ground – but what, or rather, who? Could it be someone close to him? Could it be his sister?

An interesting part was Carol, shown here to be a bit of a back bench strategist keeping an eye on the overall situation at home, as well as being a teacher to the young kids – perhaps even a surrogate mother. One blonde girl in particular holds her hand – could there be a sort of 'Sophia 2.0' relationship between them?

We'll also get to see Tyreese's big moment – comic fans will already know what I'm alluding to, but in one sequence we see the big guy absolutely surrounded by ravenous walkers as he wildly brings his almighty hammer down upon their decaying heads!

It also looks like Hershel has been able to craft a false leg that'll allow him to remain a productive member of the group, rather than hobbling around on crutches – it'll also mean less work for the CGI artists to remove Old Man Greene's leg. You get a good look at his new appendage in two shots – when he's in the woods with Carl, and sat at the table in the library.

Finally, it looks like Carl is growing up fast, but is he a lost cause after he killed a teenage boy in mid-surrender in the season 3 finale? Remember that fresh-faced little tyke in season one?

A Homely Prison:
The only thing you can choose, is what you're risking it for.” There's most definitely a lot to lose for Team Prison, but with the threat of being over-run by walkers (can they reinforce the fences?), there seems to be a suggestion that they might be looking for new digs – Michonne scans a map, and dialogue suggests this further … however, the editors of these trailers are notoriously tricksy in their juxtaposition of shots from different scenes with dialogue from entirely separate scenes all stitched together. “We have to go” / “Soon or later, we run” - is the fall of the prison inevitable?

Also of note is that over the last several months between seasons 3 and 4, they've made the prison a home. In addition to new defences and farming, they've opened up a library/school room, which also acts as a meeting place for the elders of the group. There's also new buildings – shacks of sorts – that have been constructed in the courtyard.

Stuff … Things:
Someone being heard on the car radio was going to be a side-plot in season 2, but it was removed, however here we see Daryl, Michonne, Tyreese and Bob hearing a voice on the car radio, which seems to say “Sanctuary … those who arrive, survive.” Might this be a hint at a new location for the group to head to in case everything goes arse-up at the prison?

And last, but not least, are the walkers. KNB continues to knock it out of the park, and two walkers stood out above the rest in this trailer – a female walker with horrific, blood-soaked dead eyes – and a moss-covered male walker that appears to have been trapped under a falling tree branch a long time ago, and is now a part of the tree itself. For my money, the 'tree walker' (or would that be 'tree sitter'?) was the best of the bunch.

We won't be hard-up for walker-slaying action – piles of zombies mulched under spinning car tyres, clearing the fences with numerous poking devices, Michonne wielding her katana on horse-back, head shots galore and more … oh my. Roll on October!

Click to Enlarge: Custom made...

Click to Enlarge: Pro Tip - don't go running off into the woods...

Click to Enlarge: They just keep coming...

 Click to Enlarge: David Alpert called the idea of a Rick/Tyreese/Daryl bromance triangle a "Brotangle" during IGN Live @ Comic-Con 2013.


kidgloves said...

Interesting analysis MZ. There also seems to be a bit of a bleed over of characters from the books and Telltale game. I didn't read road to woodbury but isn't Bob Stokie (sp) a character from said book. Macon on the map is also where Lee from the game is from?

Nick Thomson said...

Aye, Bob Stookey is from the comics - and was in the second novel "The Road to Woodbury". He's a former army medic with a drinking problem, so I'm assuming they've kept him essentially the same in terms of character.

Gimple has said that he's been able to get more of the comics back into the show, which is good. As much as I enjoyed it, I think season 3 went a little too far off-path in general, but the season 4 trailer suggests a re-balancing that's perhaps more akin to season 2 - doing it's own thing, but also giving us characters, imagery, and plotlines that are adapted from the comics. :)

Anonymous said...

Who is Sophia 2.0? Does she have a comic counterpart?

Nick Thomson said...

No comic counterpart. I'm assuming that there'll be a sort of 'surrogate daughter' relationship between Carol and this girl. It would seem to me that they're hinting at that in the trailer, but then again the editors of those trailers are so very devious in what they show, when they show it, and how they show it.

James Philbrick said...

Hi, I'm SS from The Laughing Dead and we think your memes, discussion, and website overall is great! You would make a great addition to the team, so that is why we would like to know if you would like to admin with us. I look forward to a response! You can add me on Facebook if you are interested and we can talk more.

Nick Thomson said...

Thanks for the kind words, I'm glad you guys like my memes. I've long-considered The Laughing Dead to be a sort of second home to my TWD memes. I remember liking the page very early on when it was somewhere around 1,000 likes.

I was pleased to see some of my memes being shared on TLD, and was pleased that you guys are very considerate of credit - you guys don't edit/crop memes, nor do you claim credit for other's memes, so that's always a big plus. I enjoy seeing the comments on mine that show up on TLD - I get to see which are most popular and why, and it's always cool to see people liking what I just do for a bit of fun.

James Philbrick said...

So what do you say? We would love to have you as an admin!

Nick Thomson said...

Many thanks for considering me for potentially being part of the Laughing Dead team, but I kinda dig just being a passenger, if that makes sense? I'm fairly busy these days with work and so on; the older I get the less time in the day there seems to be, haha!

If I reconsider in the future, I'll definitely let you guys know, but I'm still very happy to see my memes be shared on TLD - and with season 4 there'll be many more memes to come. :)

Send my regards to the Laughing Dead team, SS. All of you guys run a great page. I follow a handful of Walking Dead meme pages, but TLD is easily my favourite.

James Philbrick said...

Thank you for all the kind words, the other admins were disappointed but we completely understand! Your memes are awesome, so you can bet we will be sharing more in he future. Anytime you change your mind the offer still stands. Good luck with work!

Anonymous said...

what about picture first that melancap??