Continuing our Post-SDCC weekend highlights, here’s the second installment of FIRST LOOKS… SECOND THOUGHTS! This time we take a look at some of the TV trailers that debuted during the Con! Ash vs Evil Dead I have been waiting on this follow up since . . . well, never mind how long it’s been. It’s been a long time, okay? Let’s just say, since before Bruce Campbell was on Burn Notice. Give or take a few decades. It looks to be pretty much what I was expecting: Funny, but not as outlandishly absurd as Army of Darkness; atmospheric, creepy, but not as full-out scary as the first movie. Gore-wise, however, if the trailer is just a taste, it might manage to be as over-the-top violent as the second film, if not more so. All of these things make me very happy. The old trademark camera style is back, replete with soaring pans, odd angles, and very flattering shots of Campbell’s good side. Who, despite years away from the role, still has the same spark and wry sense of humor that made us love him in the first place. This older Ash seems a different character, which, take it from me, is what age does to you, folks. If he were to saunter in and try to play this character as if he were still in his thirties, I wouldn’t buy it. But the years seem to have made Ash even more sarcastic and haunted. But age hasn’t worn down his ego. Which is obvious when he sucks in his gut (with the help of a girdle), looks at himself in the mirror, smiles, and says, “Lookin’ sweet!” The supporting characters have my interest piqued, as well. A young man who will obviously be the Morty to Ash’s Rick (If you don’t get the reference, then you haven’t watched Rick & Morty and really need to), and a serious woman who I assume will be the foil to his sexist remarks and foolhardy plans. Which sounds cheesy on paper, but I think it’ll work. And hey, was that Lucy Lawless? The scenes look very funny. Like the kind of show you want to be watching with a room full of like-minded fans and a fridge full of beer. I could seriously see this show becoming a cult hit for that reason alone. Hopefully, the fact that it’s on Starz won’t undercut its ability to reach a large enough audience. I know I won’t be able to see it first run. No Starz in this house, unfortunately. I have to hold out for the Blu-ray. But, there you are. Groovy, Hail to the King, Baby, and all that. It’s about time we’ve gotten our Ash back, dammit. — Ben Goldman Into the Badlands He’s American, but Into the Badlands star, Daniel Wu has been working in Hong Kong action films since 1998 and hit the big time with 1999’s Gen-X Cops. The creative team behind this show is Alfred Gough and Miles Millar – they guys responsible for Smallville, Shanghai Noon, and Spider-Man 2. It’s on AMC, inspired by the classic Chinese tale Journey to the West, and features a lot of swordplay, kung-fu, and post-apocalyptic plantation melodrama. You now know WAY more than I did when I sat down to watch this trailer. Without knowing all that, Into the Badlands still looks pretty kick-ass. It’s a risky endeavor for AMC, who has been notoriously grounded when it comes to new properties. An original sci-fi/fantasy action series is a leap for the network, but maybe it’s time? There’s not a lot to dislike in the trailer. It hits all the major plot elements we need to know about, plus it has obligatory Stephen Lang, and that’s always a plus. I didn’t recognize anybody else in the cast, but that should keep the price down for this if it goes on past a first season. The cinematography is lush and beautiful, while the action sequences are packed with graceful violence and the occasional bit of wire-work. I’m not sure who the audience is going to be for this, as it’s pretty much out of the wheelhouse of every other AMC show — even The Walking Dead tries to stay pretty grounded in its horror and violence. I’ll give it a shot. If I remember it’s on. — Paul Brian McCoy The Shannara Chronicles This trailer/featurette did exactly what it needed to do. It took a property that I couldn’t give two shits about and made me want to tune in and spend some time in the world of The Shannara Chronicles. It’s shot in New Zealand and looks like it’s got quite a bit of money invested in crafting the fantasy world from Terry Brooks’s novels. It’s on MTV, though, so that gives me pause. But again, just look at that trailer. This is how it’s done. Even if you don’t think you’re gonna care about an MTV fantasy series, please at least give this trailer a look. I think it’s worth your time. — Paul Brian McCoy The Walking Dead Ooooh. It looks like Season 6 of The Walking Dead is going to be an ideological battle between Rick (Andrew Lincoln) and Morgan (Lennie James), with lots of internal drama and a freaking horde of zombies at the walls. If you know me and have read my reviews, you know that I’m looking forward to this. The past two seasons of The Walking Dead have been the best in the series, striking a very nice balance of psychology, horror, writing and performing. Every actor involved has become their character, every director brought on-board knows their stuff. Only occasionally does the writing falter, giving in to plot-driven moments rather than character-driven ones. There’s nothing in this trailer to make think that any of this is going to suddenly change. In fact, the only worry I have is that the audience might start to get tired of the unrelenting bleakness of the show! So basically, there’s not a lot new in this trailer for Season 6; not a lot we weren’t expecting. But at the same time, it still looks so good it makes me angry. I’d love to be able to free up my viewing schedule by dropping some shows that have lost their way. The Walking Dead hasn’t lost its way, and this trailer just makes me want October to get here all that much faster. — Paul Brian McCoy Fear the Walking Dead This is the only trailer I’ve seen for the AMC’s new spin-off series, Fear the Walking Dead. I was really not that hyped about it until watching this preview. Rather than rehashing the same “survivor” experience, we’re being taken back to the beginning and shown what the advent of the virus looked like from a larger perspective. The trailer implies we will see it happening gradually, as if it is like any other news story of the day, something odd happening in the background of people’s lives until it’s too late, and suddenly the apocalypse is on them like stink on a zombie. My hope is that since Robert Kirkman is involved, this will stay consistent with what we already know about the history of The Walking Dead universe. I’m also guessing we’ll see the occasional cameo by characters – living, dead, and living-dead – who we’ve come to know from the parent series. The family around whom the show revolves seems a little bland. But doesn’t everyone before the apocalypse? I imagine once they’ve lost some limbs, some minor characters have been eaten in front of them, and they’ve had to put down their neighbor with a bowling ball, then they will likely evolve into more fully-rounded characters. By which, I mean, they’ll go nutballs and we get to be glad we’re not them. Once things get rolling, it looks like they’ll be plenty of large scale scenes of society falling apart and the associated mayhem. Maybe I read this wrong, but I got the impression there might be some supernatural elements in play this time? Like I said, maybe it’s just me, but it seemed like the oldest son was having some sort of premonition of the dead world to come. On one hand, being a huge fan of Italian zombie films, I could see this being an interesting new direction to explore. On the other hand, will this downplay the gritty, realism that we expect from this type of show? Don’t know, don’t care; I applaud risk-taking. Applause. So, yeah, me likey. — Ben Goldman Share this:TweetShare on TumblrLike this:Like Loading... Related Leave a Reply Cancel ReplyYou must be logged in to post a comment.