“The Walking Dead” has done a great job establishing the walkers as a real and ever-present threat, even when viewers think that Rick and the other survivors have things under control. In “The Walking Dead” Season 5, the threat posed by the undead will only escalate further.
The show’s producers have had fun creating zombies that stand out, from the “bicycle girl” walker in the pilot episode to the “well walker” that burst apart during Season 2. It’s evident from some of the things glimpsed during the Season 5 trailer revealed at Comic-Con that they’ve continued that trend in the upcoming episodes.
“We’ve done some stuff this season that far exceeds even the burn walkers, the crispy guys — and the well walker, the moss walker that’s trapped under the tree — I feel like those were all sort of appetizers to some of the stuff we’ve done [in Season 5],” Nicotero says. “I love putting those little things in there.”
He continues, “After Season 3 one of my big concerns was making sure that the walkers still were a relevant threat. If you have a monster and you take its teeth out, it doesn’t really serve much of a purpose anymore.”
Nicotero says the direct result of that mentality was a scene in the first episode of Season 4, “30 Days Without an Accident.” Although the survivors acted as a cohesive and capable team in that episode, they still suffered losses when zombies dropped in on them through a supermarket’s soggy ceiling.
“Isn’t it kind of cool that we can take our people who are trained survivalists, but you put them in a situation that they can’t possibly be prepared for, and it all pops up again?” Nicotero asks.
One of the highlights glimpsed in that that Season 5 trailer is surely when zombies are being blasted apart by a fire hose. “It’s never been done,” Nicotero says. “I defy anyone to tell me there’s a movie where they use a fire hose to blast zombies into pieces. I do really feel like the show elevates those moments, and those moments are fun and exciting. We have a lot of those this season.”
Reedus himself shares some additional ideas for new types of walkers during the interview. “We should have zombies that we hold down, and we tie down, and we fill full of helium, and make them growl, like, in a high-pitched growl,” he jokes.
“And then Daryl shoots arrows at them!” Reedus pitches. “And then it lands in someone else’s camp and the head eats them,” Nicotero replies. “And a tiger,” Reedus adds, referring to his now-hoped for inclusion of Shiva in a future “Walking Dead” season.