It was announced earlier this week that AMC is spinning-off its most popular show, The Walking Dead. This new horror series, which comes from The Walking Dead executive producers Robert Kirkman, Gale Anne Hurd and David Alpert, will follow a different set of never-before-seen survivors while still being set within this same zombie infested universe. And because it's an American series, we don't think it's going to take place outside the U.S. Pretty exciting news, right? Well, the announcement itself was met with a resounding...Sigh of indifference.
Who else survives the zombie apocalypse in the U.S.?
Why, you might ask, did so few fans care so little about the expanding of this great series? That's easy. It's because we've been inundated with zombies over the course of the past few years. From World War Z, to Marvel Zombies, to an episode of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, and even with Bath Salts on the streets, the walking dead are literally everywhere. And all the movies, TV shows, and comics are becoming interchangeable. Its not hard to imagine that The Walking Dead is taking place at the same time, in the same world as Shaun of the Dead and Juan of the Dead. We're just getting different perspectives from around the globe.
So, we openly welcome another take on that. There are many, many stories that can be told from the zombie apocalypse, and many different viewpoints AMC can come at this from. We've all imagined ourselves in the same scenario. "Could I survive?" It's the fantasy element of the whole thing that is most exciting, and there are so many different places this series could go. So, we want to look at 5 groups of survivors we'd be most interested in seeing struggle through this worldwide pandemic. Right now, The Walking Dead takes place in Atlanta, Georgia. Partly because it's cheap to shoot there, with the state's tax incentives. But also because it's the 23rd most dangerous city in America. It breeds survivors. And it makes sense to us that the rest of the survivors in the states would be from equally dangerous cities.
So, here are the "5 Survivor Groups We Want to See in The Walking Dead Spin-Off", from some of the most dangerous locations in the U.S.
1 "The Italian-American Mob" in Newark, New Jersey
Its The Sopranos meets Night of the Living Dead! Can you imagine Tony and his crew going to work, ready for a hit, when suddenly they are over taken by zombies? A gang of modern day mobsters having to deal with The Walking Dead brings all the elements we'd need for a successful weekly series. We'd have a strong group dynamic that doesn't take well to strangers, so interaction with any other survivors would always prove to be interesting. They'd still need to take care of their 'mob' business, even in a torrential ghoul downpour. Some of these dudes would probably be scarier than a reanimated corpse. And laughs would naturally come flowing out of the material, never taking anything away from the scares. If a spin-off needs one thing, its some humor, or at least a little lightness, which The Walking Dead is completely devoid of. Its actually kind of amazing that someone hasn't taken this concept yet, and run all the way to the bank with it. The Walking Dead: Deadfellas! See, it's an easy sell. While Tony and his family lived in North Caldwell, we want to see this new series set in Newark, cause that place is deadly, and has the worst reputation for crime in the U.S., making it the tenth most dangerous city in the country. If you're a mobster in Newark, chances are you can survive anything.
2 "The Homeless" in Flint, Michigan
Most Americans view the homeless as a real world version of The Walking Dead, so of course they'd survive in this new plague-filled landscape. Their immune system is untouchable. They battle harsh elements on a daily basis. And they'd blend right in. That's just in some of the nicer neighborhoods. We're taking about Flint, Michigan here! One of the most rundown cities in America. It's already a modern day wasteland. If the zombies eat the few remaining humans that somehow manage to live and thrive in Flint, the homeless would rise up as kings. It would be a modern day Game of Thrones, and the cast would be quite diverse, as there are all manners or race, creed and religion living on the cold, dead streets of this Michigan town. The zombies would just be a nuisance, and if one of the homeless gets bit? C'est la vie, they've seen shittier days. Flint is currently listed as the worst city in America, and the most dangerous. It has the highest murder, rape, and robbery rate per capita. The city has been in dire straights ever since a number of GM plants shut down years ago, and the workers never recovered, leaving some good strong citizens without jobs, or food, or hope. In 2011, The New York Times dubbed Flint "Murdertown, USA". You know Flint would survive World War Z, and it would probably rise to become the number one city for humans in America. This could be a redemption story, about how the worst place and people in the U.S. rose from the ashes to be its savior. The Walking Dead: Murdertown, U.S.A.. I'd watch that.
3 "Australian Surfers" on The Oregon Coast
There's nothing tougher than a couple of rock-cut Australian surfers. And there's no rougher surfing spot than the Oregon Coast. Heck, it even doubled for Australia in Point Break, when Bodhi swims out past the breaks of Bells Beach. If anyone can survive a zombie apocalypse, its two salt-drenched blokes looking for that next perfect set of waves. We add in a crusty old fisherman, a pretty yet tough as nails bar wench from the local pub, a dog (cause The Walking Dead really needs a dog), and a horror movie aficionado from the Lincoln City cinema, and you have one of the crazier versions of Night of the Living Dead made yet. The Oregon Coast would add a nice element of dank wetness, set against a depressing atmosphere, which would play nicely against the almost always-sunny disposition of these two Australians, stuck in America, wondering how they will ever get home. Plus, we could add in some cool surfing scenes too boot, as the guys hang out in the water, where the living dead refuse to roam. Out of all the scenarios, this one would probably be the funniest to watch.
4 "Gangsta Rappers" in Oakland, California
Okay, so this one's a little bit of a cheat, as Big Daddy Kane and E-40 already starred in the Bay Area thriller Dead Heist, about a gang of bank robbers who find themselves in the midst of a zombie outbreak. But that's what makes me think this might work as a series. Instead of a National Credit Union, we'll have the jump-off point be a recording studio in the heart of Hyphy City. Bay Area musicians are a funky bunch, and it would be fun to watch a couple of gangsta rappers team up with a Mike Patton-esque Avant guard screamer, and two metal heads, as they traverse their new living dead landscape, in a city they already know to be filled with peril at every turn. Oakland is the third most dangerous city in the U.S. And speaking in terms of sheer brutality, it's also the most violent city in the country. Residents describe living there as a war zone. Heck. The zombies probably don't even want to go to Oakland, California, making it one of the safer places to be during this crisis. We think you could pull a diverse gang of characters out of a Bay Area studio, and we're pretty sure they would gleefully take on the pressures of living in a zombie cornfield. It's just another day in the Bay. Oh, also, got to make sure there's at least one white girl in there somewhere.
5 "Mexican Migrant Workers" on Auto Glass Row in East L.A.
Whenever I pull off Caesar Chavez, and turn up Mission past Auto Glass Row, I always think to myself, "If anyone survives a zombie apocalypse, its these guys." These are some of the coolest cats on the planet. And they live behind huge fortified walls of steel. They know how to fight, play nice, and make a living hustling outside of the Home Depot. They are born survivors. And while The Walking Dead has one of the most diverse casts on television, its sorely lacking in Mexican-Americans. If AMC wanted a hit show that could break records, having a mostly Hispanic cast would do it. This is an audience that is hungry for entertainment that reflects their lifestyle. And it's a show about survival. That's what this group does all day long. Survive. To make it an even playing ground, I also want to throw in a white Fed-Ex driver, based on the guy that comes to my house. He looks like he could knock the turd crust out off a few lumbering corpses, and he's listening to Alex Jones every time he delivers a package. You know he's awake and ready to join the fight. I think this is one of the more interesting and diverse groups AMC has to choose from. What, are they going to do another white dude leader? We don't want that! Bring on East Los Angeles, and all the things it has to offer. Make it interesting. Make it something we haven't already seen a dozen times in all the other zombie movies out there.
So, what do you think? Which group of survivors do you most want to see go up against the zombie apocalypse? Are you part of a group that could survive? Do you know of another town that can make it out of this madness alive? Let us know what you think.