Nothing makes a serial character-driven drama more fun than throwing in a pervasive threat of being chomped on by the rotting undead, and because of this the popularity of AMC's hit show The Walking Dead can no longer be contained in just one series. A spinoff is headed to the network and will be set in Los Angeles at the very start of the zombie outbreak, to show the early days of America's fall into chaos.
Currently referred to under the working title Cobalt, the spinoff already has most of its principal cast together. The group of survivors will consist of two small families and a woman who gets drawn into their circle. Kim Dickens (Gone Girl) is playing a guidance counsellor and mother of two teenage kids, played by Frank Dillane and Alycia Debnam Carey. Meanwhile, Cliff Curtis (Training Day) will play a good-hearted man in his 40s who has a rebellious teenage son.
The show is expected to air in 2015, but a new set of rumors from The Nerdist indicate that we could be getting a double dose of one or more of these characters. According to the report, at least one of the lead characters from Cobalt (more on that title in a moment) will appear in a six episode arc in The Walking Dead season 6, which will arrive on TV screens in fall 2015. This means that AMC could be planning to alternate episodes of Cobalt and The Walking Dead with Cobalt acting as a kind of flashback for the character(s) - or The Walking Dead acting as a flash-forward, depending on how you look at it.
As for the title, The Nerdist claims that the show will be called Fear the Walking Dead and reiterates that it will be a prequel rather than a sidequel, set in LA during Rick's coma days. That title does not have the best ring to it right now, but perhaps it could grow on us.
Crossing the two shows over could end up being a mixed blessing for Cobalt/Fear the Walking Dead, since while featuring one of the characters on the main series would be a good way of bringing attention to the spinoff, it would also mean that viewers would know in advance that the character is not going to die, and the constant threat of anyone getting killed off is one of the things that makes The Walking Dead so tense.
Bear in mind that all this is unconfirmed for now and take it with a grain of salt, but a crossover during the spinoff's first season would make sense as a way to attract an audience and the prequel talk tallies with what we've heard before. The pilot episode will be directed by Adam Davidson (Deadwood) with Dave Erickson acting as showrunner.
Cobalt/Fear the Walking Dead is expected to premiere in 2015.
Source: The Nerdist