HD Premiere: The Walking Dead (S5)

The Walking Dead: TV2, 9.35 Monday.

Season five of “the little zombie show that roared” launches globally within hours of the US and just days after it was renewed for a sixth. Apparently with good reason if the advance reviews can be believed. “It’s bracing to see a series that has weathered offscreen changes, and all but redefined expectations for cable viewership (as reflected in its soaring ad rates), continue to take creative chances, proving it can still leap ahead not just by shuffling along, but at breakneck speed,” Variety said. “The only downside to this breathtaking episode is pondering what the creative brain trust can do for an encore.” TV Guide reports the gruelling fifth season premiere, which opens with the heroes trapped in a boxcar with suspected cannibals, “should satisfy anyone pining for graphic action, nerve-wracking suspense and unsparing savagery from all sides, including the incessant flow of zombie ‘walkers’ who have upended civilisation, exposing humanity at its most monstrous.” Observed Entertainment Weekly: “All that commotion sets the season on a compelling path, hitting the road with a purpose. This is when Dead is at its best: journeying through postapocalyptic, fun-house-mirror America. And once they can start going, they can start figuring out why they’re going in the first place.” As to who will survive this season, the producers deny being “the character death show” but acknowledge: “It’s absolutely a part of our world and it’s part of the things that changes these characters and it’s part of the stakes that make them who they are today.”

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