Saturday 26 July 2014

The Walking Dead Season 5 Comic-Con Trailer Analysis...

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Finally, the season five comic-con trailer for TWD is here and although shorter than previous trailers for previous seasons, there's still a lot of stuff we can learn from it – so let's dig into it!

Some Key Notes:

The quest for Washington – it looks like the rather shady Gareth of Team Terminus will be joining forces with Team Rick to help get Eugene to D.C. so they can save the world … maybe.

So much for that 'Sanctuary For All' crap.

Bob seems to successfully plead for their lives.

Is he really all bad, or does he just put on a mean face?

Are the residents of Terminus cannibals? A lot of indicators point that way (the likes of Rick, Bob, Daryl, and Glenn bound and gagged with their throats over a trough, the train cars full of people etc), but is the blurry sight of a man hacking at a body preparation for dinner or a crude form of surgery? We've not seen them eat any definitive human flesh yet, so who knows, maybe their diet isn't so outré after all?

Hacking away at a leg - fixing an injury, amputating, preparing a cutlet for roasting?

Unfamiliar faces - cannon fodder set to be slaughtered? For food? For intimidation? Both?
Is the guy nearest the camera Sam from episode 4x04 "Indifference"? - credit to Moon Knight for that one.

Daryl and Glenn in a sticky situation ... with amateur butchers?

Click “READ MORE” below to see what else the trailer had in store for us (trailer spoilers ahead)...

Left hand side, in the shadows - there's the car that Beth was taken away in.

Beth is alive and well … pretty much anyway. We see in the parking lot of a mysterious new compound (with military tents) the vehicle in which she was kidnapped (with the cross in the back window). Initial theories considered that maybe she was taken by a religious mad man, but it seems that's a medical cross instead. After having a bad altercation with a female cop (a leader who is stretched thin and doesn't mind that they kidnapped her?), she is recruited as a nurse.

Good cop, bad cop? How much of it is for show?

Helping serve the "greater good".
It's also clear that Beth will be getting her hands dirty – despite breaking her arm, she'll have to abseil down an elevator shaft and do battle with walkers in another area of the building (perhaps she's been sent on a run for a specific piece of medical equipment?)

It's a long way down - notice the makeshift rope tied around her waist.

Taking names and kicking ass.

Father Gabriel and his Church make an appearance. It seems that once Team Rick head off with Gareth they encounter this possibly unhinged man of God at his church. This is an element ripped right from the pages of the comic book, so it'll be interesting to see how they use it in the TV incarnation.

Finding Religion in the Post-Apocalypse.

Welcoming his new flock.

Will he be out of his mind? Is he a cursed man, a friend, a foe?

 Tyreese and Judith are there, but where's Carol? Maybe out of shot, or maybe somewhere else?

 Is Gareth really on his own with all of Team Rick? Do they trust him? Is he brave, or foolish?

Action & Walkers:

A watery grave. This should rival the Big Spot encounter.

Abraham lays down his own particular brand of walker justice.

Season 5 is going to be big, and it's going to be gory. Major explosions, gun battles, a bus flipping into the air, a van falling off a freeway leading towards a destroyed city – it seems that the scale of the show is bigger than ever. We'll be on-the-road, perhaps with a distinct goal in-mind – get to Washington as per Eugene's mission.

Large scale action for an even bigger scale season five?

Road trip! Looks like we'll be seeing some devastated sights to widen this world.

Who's in the bus? Where did the bus come from? Where was it going? Why is it crashing?

Do they destroy Terminus (if that's where this is) and take Gareth with them?

On the way we're going to see some pretty gnarly walkers too – the stand-out being some hideously water-logged biters that make the Well Walker from season 2 look like a cuddly toy. There's also a riot control-style use of a fire truck's hose to take down the undead (the power of the jet seems to be enough to blast their soft heads apart), and Daryl takes what looks like a police baton and caves in a walker's head with very gooey results.

Walker Riot Control.

That's a new way of destroying the brain!

Bloated, water-logged, sagging flesh ... KNB crank up the gross-out factor.

Eye-popping gore as Daryl chalks up another one.

Soggy, saggy, but still very hungry.

Is there such a thing as 'too far' for The Walking Dead? Of course not!

Additional Info and Thoughts:

Rick has a proper silencer now, perhaps it comes from Terminus' stash of weapons.

                                    Taking the stealthy approach with a professional silencer.
It looks like Michonne's sword will be broken and she'll have to resurrect it as a double-ended weapon using scavenged steel. It seems to be intact at Gabriel's church, so sometime thereafter something finally breaks it.

Adaptability is the name of the survival game.

Abraham's personal crisis – could this mean an untimely demise for Rosalita, or could this be connected to some revelatory back story about his character?

Why so sad?

There's some big gun fights in areas that – perhaps – could be Terminus. Do Rick & Co burn the place down and shoot the bad guys? If so, is that before or after they join forces with Gareth and head out into the wider world?

Is this Rick (and Bob) helping to lay waste to Terminus?

“We didn't want to hurt you.” - Gareth.
Is he just talking bollocks, or is he being truthful? Team Terminus are shown to use similar methods to the former Team Prison when it comes to clearing walkers away from the fences. We still don't know whether they're definitely cannibals or not.

Help? Hindrance? Plotter? Psycho?

“You don't have to do this, we can put the world back to how it was.” - Bob.
“You join us, and we go to Washington and cure this thing.” - Gareth.
If Gareth is willing to join up with Team Rick and go on the road with them – to try and cure the virus that caused this whole mess – is he really as bad as he seems? Or, perhaps, is he just going along with their quest to 'audition' the members of the group and see which ones could be useful to them and which ones would be dead weight (or food … if they absolutely definitely do turn out to be cannibals!)

Sharing pro tips for dealing with the dead?

“We've all done something.” - Carl.
It looks like we'll be delving a little deeper into the wounded psyches of our characters. They've been forced to do terrible things in this world, and what does that mean for their soul and their mental faculties? Can you come back from the awful deeds you've done? Can you resist change for the worst? We chewed on some meaty moral issues in season 4 and it looks like season 5 will take even bigger bites.

Growing pains in the post apocalypse.

“These people are my family, and if you hurt them in any way, I will kill you.” - Rick.
He's been the reactive cop, the grieving husband, the farmer, but it looks like Rick – having killed a man with his bare teeth in the season 4 finale – is going full-on arse kicker now.

Rolling out en masse, possibly in teams. Taking an objective from multiple sides?

“We need to leave for D.C. right now” - Abraham / “We're not going anywhere without our people” - Rick.
Rick and Abraham are both alpha males, albeit with different styles and approaches, so they're bound to come into conflict with each other. There's a major mission that could save the world at stake, but – discussing their next step at the church – might they not have every member of their group with them (beyond Beth, who we already know is missing)? Tyreese and Judith are there in the church, but what about Carol for example?

Father and Daughter reuinited, but what about the Carol situation?

“Every sacrifice we make needs to be for the greater good, in here you're not the greater good, you're part of a system.” - Female Cop to Beth.
Beth will obviously want to get back to her group, but her kidnappers seem to be recruiting for something bigger, and more important, than a single rag-tag group. How will these worlds collide? Will Beth find her friends and family? Who are these people who took her?

Something dark and disturbing and totally gross awaits Rick & Co down there.

Will he stop short just in time? Surely he must - we see Glenn throughout the trailer.

So there we have it, some concrete info and some that's not-so concrete, but there's plenty to look forward to come October. Now, it should be said that the editors of these trailers are notoriously tricksy in their juxtaposition of audio and video, as well as shots from entirely different scenes (and episodes) to make things seem to be one way when they're actually another, so the only way we'll know for sure is to wait and see.

Finally, a moment of shameless self-promotion – I've written a darkly humorous thriller novel called “Sleb” about a 'car crash celebrity' starlet – if you want to know more about it, click HERE. “Celebrity deaths come in threes, but what if number three has other plans?”

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