Hope for the Living in The Walking Dead

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A SYTYCB entry

This week’s Entertainment Weekly features the upcoming new season of The Walking Dead on the cover (or FOUR different covers to be exact). I am eagerly anticipating the premiere and have high hopes for what will happen in one of TV’s most surprising hit series. I am excited to see the plot develop, especially with the subtraction of chauvinistic Shane and the addition of a badass female character, Michonne.

Season 2 had a slow, slow, crawling pace, and focused on the group’s attempt at rebuilding a normal life on Hershel’s farm. Aside from a severe lack of zombie action, the more unsettling part of their colonization was the return of all too familiar gender roles. We all witnessed Lori hounding Andrea for not wanting to help out with household chores and her resentment upon Andrea’s decision to take a “male” role,  but can’t we all relate to a post-apocalyptic desire to do more than laundry?  When the group convened to make a democratic decision, a few female characters literally gave up their right to vote and deferred the decision to the men. And although their world may hold a higher stake at new human life, Lori was judged by many men around her for contemplating abortion.

Despite some faux pas in the gender role arena, there is lots of promise for The Walking Dead. The show is based on a comic book that has plenty of female characters with empowering traits. I am counting on Michonne’s TV appearance as an indication that the writers get that girls also like zombies and perhaps it’s time to bring in and develop those characters. The existing characters are also promising, and I particularly hope they spend more time on Maggie, the feisty farm girl who was the only one to admit that she wanted to have sex before the world ended. Other ladies who have been trapped in emotional spaces have also been given opportunities to move on: Lori from the dueling of Shane and Rick, Carol in the closure of what happened to Sophia, and Andrea will finally have a worthy female sidekick.

Season 3 premieres on AMC on Sunday 10/14 at 9/8c.

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