Mon dieu! Zut alors! Merde! French fries! The Walking Dead’s ever-expanding TV universe head honcho, Scott Gimple, has revealed that the upcoming spin-off starring Norman Reedus’ Daryl will somehow take place in France, and I simply can’t wrap my tête around it.
This is a bold move for the franchise, figuratively and literally. If you’re still watching the main, soon-to-end Walking Dead series, you know that the show takes place in the east-most third of the United States, particularly in Alexandria, Virginia, and the unnamed place in Ohio where the capitol of the Commonwealth sits. Keen-eyed readers might have noticed that both of these locations are situated in North America and not Europe. But during the Talking Dead: The Walking Dead Universe Preview 2022 special, Gimple revealed that the upcoming show will somehow be set in France. Via ComicBook.com:
“Daryl is a fish out of water to start with. If Daryl finds himself with new people, he’s a fish out of water. In France, in a country that’s going through the apocalypse, [it’s] an entirely different thing. He finds himself having to reinvent himself again, having to find himself again, and also, not being with—probably—the only people in the world he’s comfortable with.”
We knew that Melissa McBride, who was set to co-star as Daryl’s BFF Carol, dropped out of the show because she didn’t want to relocate to Europe. But I think almost everyone assumed that filming was going to take place there solely because of tax breaks the country offered, not that the show would be set there.
So the first big question is this: How does Daryl get to France? It’s so wild I’m not going even speculate about who might have a ship or plane with the power to make a trans-Atlantic journey. The second big question: Why?! Why would Daryl take a European Vacation? Or who would bother to bring Daryl to France, and for what reason? Gimple mentioned that it will have something to do with the smarter, faster, “variant” zombies mentioned in The Walking Dead and briefly seen on the short-lived spin-off World Beyond in a post-credits scene that was... set in France. These zombies will also be a major factor in the remainder of TWD’s final season and some, if not all, the upcoming spin-offs.
While we’ll have to wait until 2023 for those Daryl, Maggie and Negan, and Rick and Michonne series, The Walking Dead will return this October 2 for its final eight episodes.
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