Life is unpredictable. One day you are sitting down in your patrol car, having lunch with your partner, talking about your marital issues and the next; well, the next you wake up from a coma after being shot in the line of duty only to find out the world has changed and you are now in the middle of a frigging zombie apocalypse. Can this possibly be a bad dream? For sheriff deputy Rick Grimes, this is simply the beginning of a new reality and a long road to survival; and for fans like myself, Days Gone Bye meant the beginning of a Sunday night ritual.
When you see Rick wandering into an abandoned camp near a convenience store in search of gas and then shooting a zombified little girl holding a teddy bear right in the head, you knew this series was going to be different. We see how the show has managed to surprise the viewers time and time again, from pushing the limits to what was thought to be permissible to air on television to killing off beloved characters without hesitation, the unpredictability in the series adds another charming element to The Walking Dead.
It has been 7 years since Days Gone Bye premiered but the pilot ultimately set the stage for the viewer to embrace the series. By mixing horror with drama in the most realistic approach to a zombie apocalypse, The Walking Dead invited fans to empathize with the characters in the series, making us part of their story as it unfolds and leaving us wondering how we would react if we suddenly woke up to a world overrun by the undead.