Heading into this fall’s seventh season, AMC’s zombie drama The Walking Dead continues to be occasionally criticized for sometimes focusing too much on human melodrama and not enough on the threat of the undead ghouls themselves.
Whether one is in that particular camp or not, it’s hard to argue the fact that when the “walkers” are made the focus of things, they tend to look amazingly cool and meet their ends in wonderfully gory ways. That’s because The Walking Dead has arguably one of the best special effects teams in the business, capable of expertly combining old-school prosthetic make-up and practical rigs with state of the art CGI visual enhancements.
The Walking Dead’s effects team is headed up by co-executive producer and genre legend Greg Nicotero, co-founder of the KNB EFX Group with Robert Kurtzman and Howard Berger. Appropriately beginning his career on the classic George Romero zombie film Day of the Dead, Nicotero has since worked on a staggering number of high-profile movies, including Evil Dead II, Scream, Kill Bill Volumes I and II, and Sin City. Not content with being the master of zombie effects, Nicotero has also directed 13 episodes of The Walking Dead to date, including season six’s controversial finale Last Day on Earth.
The Walking Dead’s home video distributor Anchor Bay has now released a fascinating – albeit brief – new featurette focusing on the creation process for three of season six’s most memorable zombies, which as one might imagine features a lot of Nicotero. Discussed are the zombie that gets literally ripped apart squeezing between two semi trucks in the walker-filled quarry early in the season, the Bernie Wrightson-inspired flesh eater encountered by Daryl in the woods, and the water-logged ghoul who accosts Maggie while in the sewer tunnel with Aaron. This video appears to be taken directly from Anchor Bay’s upcoming release of The Walking Dead season six, which arrives on Blu-Ray and DVD on August 23, 2016.
Fans have a lot of big questions that still remain unanswered heading into The Walking Dead’s season seven premiere, the most obvious one being which member of Rick’s core group of survivors did Negan kill with a swing of his signature weapon “Lucille.” However, one aspect that shouldn’t really be questioned at this point is that season seven will likely feature some badass zombie designs, and invent cool new ways for Rick and company to dispatch them back to the grave.
The Walking Dead returns for season 7 this October on AMC.