Don’t Fear the Walking Dead on TV2

TV2 will not be airing The Walking Dead prequel Fear the Walking Dead, which dawns August 23 in the US.

The network confirms it doesn’t have the rights to the series starring Kiwi Cliff Curtis.

Given Sky hasn’t announced it for The Zone, which re-runs the original, that means it could be among the suite of new shows Lightbox will unveil this month to mark its first anniversary.

After all, Lightbox scored a similar coup when it scored Breaking Bad prequel Better Call Saul, even though the original screened on SoHo.

Fear Cliff Curtis

Fear Cliff Curtis

Although The Hollywood Reporter was lukewarm about the 90-minute premiere, it predicts “ratings will be enormous, even if they can’t quite reach the stratospheric heights of the original”.

In an early review, it says the six-part series is set in Los Angeles on the eve of the virus outbreak that turns victims into zombies.

“It’s not quite a prequel, of course, but it gives fans a look at the very first outbreak moments when the world as it was then began to slowly realise something awful was happening.

“There’s rich dramatic material to be mined in that scenario, and Fear should get to it sometime within these first six episodes.

“But the truncated episode order handicaps some of the storytelling early on, because there are certain truisms about a pilot that just can’t be overcome.

“That is, executive producer, co-creator and showrunner Dave Erickson has to introduce a whole new cast, and that takes time.”

It calls the first two episodes “while not exactly boring, certainly less magnetic than the original” but with a second 15-ep season already ordered, acknowledges: “Even if Fear falls short creatively, there must be some solace for those making it that millions of viewers will still embrace it — the benefit of a good bloodline.”

AMC will screen Fear as a curtain-raiser to the return of The Walking Dead on October 11, which you can expect TV2 to air within hours or days of the US.

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11 Responses to “Don’t Fear the Walking Dead on TV2”

  1. Shame that it won’t be on TV2 – they’ve served fans well with The Walking Dead, so it’s a pity they don’t have the new show. Any chance of a ratings update please – I enjoy your regular posts!

  2. I love The Walking Dead, I just recently watched season 1-4 on Blu-ray, it’s such an emotional show …
    looking forward to season 5 🙂

  3. Thanks, Tony. Expect one tomorrow …

  4. I wonder if TV3 will be screening Fear The Walking Dead? I notice Humans is also AMC, perhaps TV3 bought both of them 🙂

  5. Interesting observation, Trevor, but I think it’s more likely TV3 acquired Humans from a British supplier. It’s been screening a number of Channel 4 and 5 docs lately, as well as the ITV drama Safe House (which you would have expected TVNZ to pick up through its deal with ITV distribution). These purchases point towards a deal with a niche UK distributor.

  6. Oh well,it was just a thought. I would prefer it to be on Netflix than Lightbox 🙂

  7. I’m hoping it’ll show up on Netflix as they show Walking Dead in other parts of the world.

  8. Yes, it does, but not here. I’m picking Lightbox because it’s about to lose rights to several key dramas, including 24, and is about to announce a slate of new additions. If Netflix NZ had the rights, it probably would have been announced by now. It also fits Lightbox’s strategy of securing new shows with built-in followings, such as Better Call Saul.

  9. Fingers crossed Netflix gets the NZ rights to House of Cards back off Lightbox!!!!! I’m hanging out for Season 3.

  10. Thanks, Brian. Fingers crossed FTWD doesn’t take as long to turn up here as The Walking Dead, which also had a global rollout but didn’t debut here until months later. Would be great if AMC set up a channel via Sky but that would have implications for SoHo, which already airs AMC shows like Hell on Wheels, Halt and Catch Fire, Breaking Bad, Mad Men etc. Hopefully Sky hasn’t picked up FTWD as a Neon exclusive to boost its appeal — in which case it will disappear into the SD netherworld along with Turn (another AMC commission) and Manhattan. If Sky does have FTWD, our best hope is for it to be as a surprise announcement for The Zone.

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