Season 6, Episode 1
Airdate: October 11, 2015
With Morgan and Rick reunited (and it feels so good), the Alexandria gang must enact a dangerous plan to lure walkers away from their new home, but Murphy’s Law and some good old dissent from their own ranks could put the entire plan in jeopardy.
Poor Ethan Embry… he just can’t survive network television.
All right, so after six weeks of that shit Fear the Walking Dead bullshit, the king has returned and reminded us all exactly why it is the king of post-apocalyptic zombie drama. “First Time Again” was not only a great character piece, but it was a tense 90 minutes as the plan slowly progresses with the audience mostly unaware of how it was supposed to progress. This was a great example of how a show should both hide and play its cards instead of just dicking around with the audience to draw things out.
The black and white flashbacks were an interesting and stylish framing device. I’m not sure if they were just intended to be black and white because they were in the past or if the show was paying homage to the comic book that birthed it, but I approve either way.
“First Time Again” did what it was supposed to do. It grew crops from the seeds it planted at the end of last season and planted a few more for cultivation. It introduced us to some new characters and reintroduced us to some old ones and allowed the regulars to once again question who they are. Last season, Doctor Who has its title character trying to answer the question of whether or not he is a good man… that’s what Rick is doing right now and the answer is a tough one.
All of this in mind, I didn’t get this whole “let’s lead the zombies away plan.” I’m not sure why Rick and the gang couldn’t keep the zombies contained in the quarry since they managed to put up the new walls in what looked like a day and line a bunch of cars up all over the sides of a miles-long road… couldn’t they have put up this containment around the quarry exits instead? Obviously, the quarry is kind of a God-send for Alexandria as it’s been catching the zombies and attracting them with the noise, so why get rid of it? Why not pick them off while they’re contained? You could set fire to them or just shoot them if they got too numerous. I know there’s suspension of disbelief and we just have to accept certain things, but really? A zombie cattle drive was the best possible plan they came up with and not randomly thrown sticks of dynamite?
I don’t know… the natural zombie trap seemed to be working. I’m not sure why they had to fix it.
Still, though, it was a very strong premiere and a reminder of why this show is an amazing series. I’m so glad it has risen again.