The Walking Dead: Artist Alex Maleev Honors Rick Grimes & Season 1

Just when you thought new Season 11 preview images and an official season overview were enough for this week, the fine folks over at AMC's The Walking Dead had one more treat to offer. In fact, it's the first of what we're expecting will be a total of ten treats leading up to the premiere of Season 11 Part 1 on August 22. With the network and the long-running series promising previews and more every week until then, we have the first in a series of custom artwork from some familiar names celebrating a previous season of TWD and significant moments. First up, we have Alex Maleev (Superman vs. Predator, Hellboy: Weird Tales, Daredevil, Moon Knight, Batman) checking in with a Season 1 focus on Andrew Lincoln's Rick Grimes- fitting with Maleev's preference for focusing on single characters. In the following piece, we see Rick coming to terms with the fact that the world he once knew is now gone.

the walking dead
Image: AMC Networks

Now here's a look at those Season 11 images released earlier this week showcasing Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), Maggie (Lauren Cohan), Eugene (Josh McDermitt), Ezekiel (Khary Payton), Princess (Paola Lázaro), Yumiko (Eleanor Matsuura), Carol (Melissa McBride), Magna (Nadia Hilker), Kelly (Angel Theory), and others- along with the official overview for the 11th and final season that gives Maggie's group an official name: the Wardens (uh-oh).

The Walking Dead Season 11
Image: AMC

Previously on "The Walking Dead," our survivors confronted past demons and combated new threats, with friendships and relationships suffering from the mounting collateral damage that is the apocalypse. Alexandria is severely compromised, left a former shell of the home it once was from the carnage and devastation left behind by the Whisperers.

The Walking Dead Season 11
Image: AMC

Now all who live in Alexandria struggle to refortify it and feed its increasing number of residents, which include the survivors from the fall of the Kingdom and the burning of Hilltop; along with Maggie and her new group, the Wardens. Alexandria has more people than it can manage to feed and protect. Their situation is dire as tensions heat up over past events and self-preservation rises to the surface within the ravaged walls.

The Walking Dead: Artist Alex Maleev Honors Rick Grimes & Season 1
Image: AMC

They must secure more food while they attempt to restore Alexandria before it collapses like countless other communities they have come across throughout the years. But where and how? More haggard and hungrier than ever before, they must dig deeper to find the effort and strength to safeguard the lives of their children, even if it means losing their own.

Meanwhile, unbeknownst to those at Alexandria, Eugene, Ezekiel, Yumiko, and Princess are still being held captive by mysterious soldiers who are members of a larger and unforthcoming group.

The Walking Dead: Artist Alex Maleev Honors Rick Grimes & Season 1
Image: AMC

Last Friday, AMC released three new preview images for the series' August return. In the first two, Carol (Melissa McBride), Maggie (Lauren Cohan), Rosita (Christian Serratos), and Lydia (Cassady McClincy) find themselves in what appears to be a military hanger of some type, fighting off some walkers. Could this be tied to Daryl (Norman Reedus) finding a few too many military folks wandering around in the woods? In the third image, Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) is going brutal on a walker with a crowbar (with Maggie being back, we're guessing baseball bats aren't at the top of the weapon list anymore?). Here's a look at the preview images:

The Walking Dead: Artist Alex Maleev Honors Rick Grimes & Season 1
Photo Credit: Josh Stringer/AMC
The Walking Dead: Artist Alex Maleev Honors Rick Grimes & Season 1
Photo Credit: Josh Stringer/AMC
the walking dead
Photo Credit: Josh Stringer/AMC

Starting July 15 on AMC+, a series of specials titled The Walking Dead: Origins will explore the journeys of the series' most celebrated characters. Over the course of four weeks, the spotlight will shine on Daryl, Carol, Maggie, and Negan, with each episode charting the story of the zombie apocalypse from the point of view of a single character and is set to feature new interviews and narrations from the actors that portray these iconic characters, along with clips from the most pivotal moments of their journeys so far. Each special will be accompanied by a "Best Of" collection featuring fan-favorite episodes for each character with a Season 11 preview accompanying each one. Produced by Embassy Row, The Walking Dead: Origins lineup and premiere dates are as follows: "Daryl's Story" premieres Thursday, July 15; "Maggie's Story" premieres Thursday, July 22; "Negan's Story" premieres Thursday, July 29; and "Carol's Story" premieres Thursday, August 5.

the walking dead
Image: AMC

Here's a look at some highlights from showrunner and executive producer Angela Kang's interview with EW:

When Season 11 Starts, The Focus Will Be On a Number of Storylines- Including Connie: "We'll be dealing with the new group that our foursome of Eugene, Ezekiel, Princess, and Yumiko ran across and that starts to open up their world in bigger and unexpected ways," Kang revealed "Then, of course, we've got to see that Connie is still alive at the end of episode 16, so we still got that thread out there to deal with. We've got some great stories at Alexandria, as they're dealing with the aftermath of this Whisperer war and things start to amp up even further. Then it all keeps rolling from there."

Viewers Will Be Seeing Daryl in a New Light: "We've got some really intriguing stuff for Daryl. We'll be putting him in a very different context than he's been in before," Kang said- but will that include Leah (Lynn Collins). Our prediction? Daryl (Norman Reedus) meets back up with Lynn- with a little one in her arms.

Oh Yes, Maggie and Negan Will Be Addressed: "There's a big, important story that has to do with Maggie and Negan, and I think it should be fascinating. Those two are really, really great across from each other," Kang teased. But after the events of "Here's Negan," this isn't the same Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) that Maggie (Lauen Cohan) remembers. "He got to the point where he remembered that she wanted him to fight, and she understood the importance of being with other people. That's one of the things that she says to him: 'We can't make it on our own. It's never going to happen.'" Kang explained. "And Negan, he's really thinking about the legacy of his wife and what she hoped for the two of them and what she hoped for him and has decided, 'You know what? I've earned my place here and I'm going to prove that I have a place here. And if that means I've got to face Maggie, even though that's something that is uncomfortable for me to face, and I don't want to, and it scares me in some ways, that's what I have to do.'"

the walking dead
The Walking Dead – Image: AMC

Now here's a look back at the full "Questions" teaser previously released, making those scenes of an ominous interrogation room, ice cream and cake displays, posters of missing people on boards, a bench at a subway stop with a pointed message to God, and what a courtroom with a gavel on the table a bit easier to understand- with a look at a Commonwealth red security uniform. And then there's the interrogation…

In a conversation with Insider from earlier, Kang offered some additional insight into the first full teaser for the final season of The Walking Dead and how a classic moment from the comics will also be getting a "remix" over the course of the final 24 episodes. With regards to the scenes with the bakery and the "missing persons" board that were reminding comics fans of Michonne's storyline with her long-lost daughter Elodie? You were right on target except with Danai Gurira's Michonne gone from the series, viewers should expect that storyline to shift elsewhere- but to who? "I think for comic-book fans that [those scenes] definitely means something specific," Kang explained. "We're planning to do some version of that, but, since we don't have Michonne, we'll see what form that takes."

the walking dead
Image: Screencaps

Kang also revealed recently that "When we start [Season 11], we're rockin' and rollin.' We're back to being big and scope-y. There's going to be a feeling that things are just ripping along for the first block. Then, we're going for some different tonal things than we're used to on the show, which hopefully will be fun for the audience." And Kang means running the gamut of tonal from out-and-out horror and action to romance to even the occasional moment to smile every now and then. "I think it's just that mix," Kang explained. "As we meet more than one kind of new community, every story will have its own vibe. So some of them may go into types of genres that haven't been really explored on the show before." For Kang, it's about giving the viewers a chance to see that a series that's been running for 11 seasons still has a surprise or two up its sleeve. "My hope is that it will feel like we're still finding things that are new, even in the final season," she says."But also that we're just moving right along."

daily dispatch
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About Ray Flook

Serving as Television Editor since 2018, Ray began five years earlier as a contributing writer/photographer before being brought onto the core BC team in 2017.
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