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‘The Walking Dead’ announces spinoff series

With just a few episodes left of “The Walking Dead’s” fifth season, fans breathed a sigh of relief Tuesday morning with the announcement of a spinoff series to be set in Los Angeles.
There’s no plot announcement, no official title and just a few signed on as official cast members, but that doesn’t matter for “The Walking Dead” fans. No longer will we have to wait those seven long, grueling months without new walker guts and severe anxiety for Glen and Maggie’s survival.
So here’s what we do know.
The spinoff takes place in the same universe as the original story that follows Rick’s group in the zombie apocalypse. So (as far as we know), the infection is the same and is still assumed to have the entire population infected, alive or undead.
It takes place in Los Angeles, providing way too many opportunities to have awesome celebrity walker cameos, the occasional stay in a celebrity mansion and the everlasting question if the signs of mass chaos and destroyed city are actually just a post-Lakers-win LA or from the actual apocalypse LA.
I know I won’t be happy unless there are at least a few celebrity walker cameos (I’m looking at you, Bill Murray).
The location is going to be the biggest asset to putting pieces together for TWD fans. We haven’t seen much of the infection’s impact outside of a few states along the East Coast, so an independent storyline on the other side of the country has big opportunities for giving fans more clarity to the situation. I’m hoping for a trip to a still-intact CDC location in Los Angeles.
So far, the official cast consists of Cliff Curtis (“Live Free or Die Hard”), Kim Dickens (“Sons of Anarchy”) and Frank Dillane, who played Tom Riddle (aka baby Voldemort) in “Harry Potter and the Half-Blooded Prince.” I have to admit, it’s going to be weird having characters in the apocalypse not running around doing “stuff and thangs” without Daryl catching squirrels.
In late summer, six one-hour episodes will run on AMC with the following season airing in sometime (assuming summer) 2016, giving TWD fans an around-the-clock walker series to watch.
I’m actually really happy about this. AMC has had plenty of success so far with “Better Call Saul,” the “Breaking Bad” spinoff, and I think the writers and AMC can pull this off without looking like a cheap attempt at opening more doors in the franchise.
“The Walking Dead” writers have done a pretty good job so far taking their own adaptation of the comics, and this next series will be like taking the training wheels off and letting them run free without feeling as though they have a hardcore comic book fan base to appease.

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