New World Order, New Walking Dead

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The epic ending of The Walking Dead continues in Part 2 of The Final Season, returning February 13 on AMC+ and February 20 on AMC. Below is a spoiler-free review of the Season 11B episodes “No Other Way” and “New Haunts” (airing Feb. 27). After eleven years and as many seasons of surviving the undead apocalypse, The Walking DeadThe saying to “fight the dead, fear the living” is challenged by Daryl (Norman Reedus) in a confrontation with another enemy group. “We’re doing it all wrong,” Daryl says in the February 20 return of the AMC zombie drama. “We survived everything for what? To keep fighting and killing each other?”

While he was still a third away from the home stretch (an episode of eight Part 3 airing later in 2022), the endgame of The Walking Dead is not survival, but humanity rebuilding civilization. Enter the Commonwealth.

Pick up where October is Part 1 the finale “For Blood” stopped, Part 2 The first “No Other Way” is less the beginning of season 11B than the end of season 11A. The Walking Dead took a winter break with cliffhangers in Alexandria (withstanding a violent storm) and Meridian (the city turned into a warzone by the Reapers), leaving the resolution for this twisty, action-packed premiere.

It was not until the last moments of 1109 that The Walking Dead twists in a new – and boldly different – ​​direction.

Veteran Series Writer Corey Reed’s Episode (“A Certain Doom”) and the First Time TWD director Jon Amiel (american godsCMA Stop and catch fire) rarely slows down, alternating between the set-piece of Alexandria’s blood-splattered walker invasion and Maggie’s (Lauren Cohan) warpath in her turf war with the Reapers. (“They come at night, and by the time you see them you’re already dead,” Maggie warned of the ultimately disappointing boogeyman villains.)

After spending a third of those last 24 episodes on the road to Meridian, the main storylines of Season 11A converge when Eugene (Josh McDermitt) returns with a delegation from the Commonwealth. The plot threads at the forefront of 11A – the strained truce between Maggie and Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), the antagonistic family relationship of Daryl and Leah (Lynn Collins), the mission to retake Meridian from the Reapers and save Alexandria – skip to context as the Commonwealth resumes story “A”.

Finally.

It’s a revitalizing and much-needed change of pace (and scenery). When the Commonwealth’s envoy, Deputy Governor Lance Hornsby (Josh Hamilton), arrives in Alexandria, it’s to offer survivors a choice: stay and rebuild or join the 50,000 survivors living in the Commonwealth of Ohio, an advanced community led by Governor Pamela Milton (The boys and The blacklistby Laila Robins).

The status quo changes as some Alexandrians assimilate into the Commonwealth, some stay behind, and some end up elsewhere. At the end of “No Other Way”, there was a major reshuffling, time jump, and friction between the now opposing former allies. While not as long as Season 9’s 18-month and six-year time jumps, a leap forward leaves some burning questions and gaps to fill as the season progresses.

The season shifts to a mystery-thriller vibe as the new residents realize the Commonwealth isn’t as idyllic as it seems. The Walking Dead explores themes of classism, inequality and systemic oppression through a post-apocalyptic lens as a resistance movement to the Commonwealth threatens to upend the New World Order – and Governor Milton’s tightly controlled system to put order in chaos.

“New Haunts,” also directed by Amiel and written by newcomer Magali Lozano, harkens back to Season 5B, which saw Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and his band of road-weary survivors struggle to adjust to Alexandria. Returning Showrunner Angela Kang (Seasons 9 & 10) Freshens Up Again The Walking Dead with parameters and situations that seem not to belong to The Walking Dead — like a luxurious Halloween masquerade ball — and it’s the energizing jolt a long-running show needs, even so close to the end. Because we’ve never seen a fully functioning civilization, it’s a fit for the audience as much as it is for our characters.

After an explosive start to the season in “No Other Way,” the move to the Commonwealth in “New Haunts” gives the show a fresh start and a fresher feel. While the Rick-less TV series adapts a comic book story that hinges on Rick Grimes, even comic book readers won’t know what to expect from this challenging and unpredictable penultimate chapter.

The last season is The Walking Dead like you’ve never seen before. Even at the beginning of the end, The Walking Dead is not dying – it is living again.

Rating: 4 out of 5

The Walking Dead: The Final Season Part 2 premieres Sunday, Feb. 20 at 9 p.m. ET/8c on AMC. New episodes are available to stream early throughout the season starting February 13 on AMC+.

Follow the author @CameronBonomolo on Twitter and @NewsOfTheDead for The Walking Dead Universe coverage throughout the season.


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