Trouble in Paradise: Deconstructing The Walking Dead SDCC Season 6 Promo Poster


So many thoughts about this picture…

Hello again, and much love, dear readers.  We at barnfullawalkers hope that you all are having a lovely summer, full of fun, frolic, naps, and shenanigans.  May there be lots and lots of shenanigans.

Speaking of shenanigans, if you are among the lucky folk who are en route to San Diego, as I write this, for this week’s #SDCC2015, congratulations!  A few years back, I was able to go to the SDCC, and it was the funnest, ever. As soon as I walked into the San Diego Convention Center, I felt like I had finally found my natural habitat, and immediately got to the business of having one of the best long weekends of my life (thus far).  

Memories include: riding in an elevator with Gene Simmons (my friend said he checked me out); seeing Mix Master Mike spin at a club on the beach (and skinny-dipping in the Pacific ocean, afterwards); going to the “Marvel Party” with a friend who had done artwork for a few issues of different Marvel comics; walking behind David Cross and a girl that I think was Amber Tamblyn (not sure if they were together yet) and eavesdropping on their adorable fake-argument-debate; setting off on foot across the city in search of the Buffalo Exchange with my adventurous friend, Amy…we had only a vague idea of where we were going, and we shared stories along the way, browsed in stores, stopped at coffee shops and cafes, climbed trees and meandered for many hours (and about 80+ blocks) until we found the store we were looking for.  After an epic shopping spree, we treated ourselves to a bus ride back to the convention center (which took all of about 25 minutes) as the fellow passengers, upon learning of our day’s journey, exclaimed over us for being crazy enough to actually walk that far, anywhere.  

I also tried my first, and last, Bikram yoga class on that trip, after a night of hard partying…an ill-advised move, dear readers. I do not recommend anyone doing that, ever, unless one is both a seasoned partier and a seasoned Bikram yogi.

While, sadly, I will not be in attendance at the SDCC this year, I will bask in the memories, and I will be there in spirit. For those who are going, have a blast, be safe, and blow a kiss to the TWD and the FTWD panels for me. ❤ ❤

One day, SDCC, I’ll be back, and the adventures will be many, and epic, indeed. 

While I do entertain fantasies of being on a plane bound for San Diego, I am, in reality, exactly where I belong…at home, with the kids finally asleep, sitting in front of the laptop, drinking wine, simultaneously texting my WD buddy some mad gossip and getting ready to hash it with you all about just what the hell is going on with Rick, Morgan, our gang and the Alexandrians in this first image of TWD Season 6, the #TheWalkingDeadSDCC Seasonpromotional poster.

Like, seriously, people…we need to talk about what is going on in this picture.

Let us begin our discussion with our two favorite frenemies in the forefront, locked in a terse moment of exquisite manly tension…Rick and Morgan.

When we last left Rick and Morgan, in the final moments of the TWD Season 5 finale episode, “Conquer,” Morgan’s journey to find Rick Grimes ended in a most unexpected fashion, when, in yet another classic TWD moment, the brains-and-blood-spray hit the proverbial fan…

Rick was all like...

Rick Smash! was all, like, BANG! and McBeaty’s face, head, and brains were all like, SPLAT! all over Deanna Monroe’s fancy courtyard.

And then, Bloody Rick looked up, and saw his old friend, Morgan, standing there, and Morgan was all, like,

hello morgan


And, stone-cold busted, Rick was all, like, ….



The way I imagine it, later that night, Daryl set out in search of a missing Rick, and found him drunk, in Alexandria’s soundproofed recreation center, taking long pulls from a handle of bourbon, stumbling around, and singing karaoke to:

I mean, right? Honestly, people, watching that ending scene just reinforced for me the inescapable, irrefutable truth that timing is everything. It really is. Sometimes, timing works out, and it’s all like, “Oh, what perfect timing!” and shit’s all beautiful, and everything just seems to fall into place. Those are good, good times.

Savor those moments, people, because other times, timing is not your friend. Other times, timing will kick your ass, hard.

The “Bloody Rick looks up from blowing McBeaty’s brains into the bricks, and sees Morgan standing there, looking horrified” moment would, in my humble estimation, fall into the latter category.

Now, the way I see it, Morgan has been out there, in the feral open, for quite some time, and has most certainly seen some shit go down these past two years since the inception of the walker apocalypse. (I am, of course, hoping that Season 6 will give us TWD fans some Morgan backstory, a la Season 4’s “Live Bait,” which caught us up with the Governor’s whereabouts, and gave us one of our most beloved TWD characters, Tara.)  

 So, I have a couple of questions, here:  We have Morgan, flanked by Daryl and Aaron, coming up on a scenario where he sees, on one end, a man bleeding out from a gash in his throat, dying, as his sobbing wife holds him…over on the other end, Morgan sees Rick, who is dressed in a cop’s uniform (and yes, is covered in blood, I know, but it’s walker blood, and these are some crazy times, so you never really know what you are going to see when you turn a corner) standing over another man who has been wrestled to the ground…then, Morgan sees Rick shoot said man, wrestled to the ground, in the head…and, while it’s all a bit startling, I ask you, dear readers, is it really that shocking, in these times, to come up on a scene like that? 

And, upon taking in the whole scene, is it really that hard for Morgan to put the pieces together and realize what events may have transpired to lead up to McBeaty’s brains being splattered all over Deanna’s nice courtyard?

Seems pretty simple to me: Domestic abuser goes all crazy, slashes an innocent man’s throat, has to get put down like a rabid dog…seems to me that that shit goes into the “crazy fucker had it coming” category. 

All I’m saying is, while this strange reunion may lead to some awkward moments when Rick and Morgan run into each other at the commissary, is this fateful first encounter, with its clash of idealogies, really going to be a friendship dealbreaker for Rick and Morgan?

I certainly hope not, especially since we know what’s coming for Alexandria…the Wolfboys, flanked by their Walker Army! 

They found Aaron’s man-purse, they’ve seen the pictures, and they are coming, people

As we study this first #TWDSDCC promotional poster image, we see Rick, standing close to Morgan, looking intensely at him, as if imparting crucial information to Morgan, or awaiting Morgan’s response to said information.  We see Morgan’s gaze is fixed outward, towards the horizon, as if he is studying the walls surrounding Alexandria, and considering the threat that is coming from the outside.

(Um, yeah, Morgan, about that…remember those wacky, weirdo wolfboys sporting W’s on their foreheads? The ones that tried to kill you? The ones that basically told you, straight up, that they find and kill innocent people they come across, or they trap them, or they run through their camps and communities, massacring the innocents, turning them into walkers, and bringing them back, somewhere, in their new, “not exactly alive” state?  Remember those guys, the ones you didn’t kill? That mean, nasty shit they do, and bragged to you about, is like their fucked-up hobby, their life’s purpose.

And after those wolfboys woke up from their kung-fu coma nap in the back seat of that abandoned car you so kindly tucked them away in, they found their way back to the trap you rescued Daryl and Aaron from, “walkerized” some poor dude in a red poncho, fashioning themselves another member for their undead army, and then, they found Aaron’s man purse, pulled out pictures of your new community, and now, they are coming to your new home, Morgan. They are coming, with their walker army, to kill people and fuck shit up, and I ask you, my friend…do you think that maybe, in retrospect, that some lives are a little more precious than others?

Sorry for the diatribe, but that shit needed to be said, and btw, I am also saying. right here, right now, that I just know that Kirkman, Gimple, and Nicotero are going to have a scene where we (and most likely, Daryl and Aaron) see that red poncho guy, who will now be Red Poncho Walker, sporting a W on his decomposing forehead, snapping and slavering amongst his fellow troops in the undead infantry…mark my words, dear readers. That shit is coming, to a walled community near you.)

Anyway, back to the poster…Morgan really does seem to be listening, thinking, processing what Rick is trying to tell him, which, judging from the grim expressions on both men’s faces, seems to be a matter of great importance. 

Life, death, walker army…that kind of shit.

We see the others behind Rick and Morgan, divided, which is interesting, but not really so surprising, you know? A lot of shit has gone down in a short time in Alexandria, and everyone’s still trying to get their bearings. Everyone’s expressions are so serious, grim. (Which really did bum me out, when I first saw this poster. I was like, “Wait, what about the fun playdates at the Grimes’ house? What about Friday Night Dance Troupe?” Tragic, all this unrealized potential for fun, flirting, and frolic. Such a waste of hot, sexy talent.  As we have said before in this blog, Damn you back to the hell that spawned you, cruel, cockblocking walker apocalypse!)

In the poster image, we see Rick’s gang, with Daryl and Michonne in the forefront, lined up behind Rick, standing at the ready, as if anticipating battle.  Behind Morgan, the key members of the Alexandrian community stand together, including Deanna Monroe, and her surviving son, Spencer (who I think got cut off at the edge there in my reproduction for this post..sorry about that…was impossible to get a full-sized screenshot of the entire poster image). We see Aaron  looking worried, behind Deanna, and, lurking in the background, looking tragic as usual, we see Father Gabriel. 

Jessie, while on the side of the Alexandrians, has gaze turned towards Rick, while her body is turned halfway between Rick and his people, and her fellow Alexandrian citizens. I feel that Jessie’s placement, and posturing, in this image suggests that she is caught somewhere in the middle, between the two camps, Team Rick, and Team Alexandria.

I feel that we TWD viewers will see the a fuller scope of Jessie’s strength and character as Season 6 unfolds, as she negotiates the complex and vital role as translator/mediator between Rick’s group, Morgan, and Deanna’s group. She would be able to be more objective, and see the strengths of each side’s approach on how to navigate both survival in this new world, while trying to retain some of the humanitarian and moral codes of the world left behind.  

The way I see it, Rick, Morgan, Deanna, and the others have enough challenges to face in the season ahead, as they try to come to some sort of accord, and find a way to coexist, flourish, and explore the rare opportunity to actually live a life worth living, however brief it may be, within the relative safety behind Alexandria’s walls. It is a tall order, especially with the ever-present threat that looms just beyond (and, sometimes, inside) the steel walls of Alexandria…the predatory world of both undead, and living, foes alike want nothing better than to breach those walls and prey upon those living within them. 

War is coming to Alexandria, people, and as we study this poster, it is easy to surmise that each and every individual in this picture knows it. Daryl, Michonne, and the rest of the righteous gang look poised and ready, their battle faces on. Deanna’s face looks grim, and stormy, and her people, who are not so battle-savvy (yet) look worried.  

Nobody’s fucking around, least of all Kirkman, Gimple, and Nicotero. And our man, Rick Grimes, ain’t playing. But, never fear, darlings. The TWD panel will convene at #SDCC this Friday at noon Pacific, and they will debut the Season 6 trailer, and it will all be good, I promise.  And, of course, with that trailer, another tweaker blog post from barnfullawalkers will be forthcoming, and once again, all will be right in the world.

Until then, enjoy the playlist, darlings.  With all this strife and discord in the air of Alexandria, I figured we needed a “rudey, ‘tudey, crass and crudey” punk rock playlist, with a triple scoop of Transplants, to help sort it all out. To Rick and the gang, and to TWD, and to the San Diego Comic Con…cheers to all!


Elvis Costello, “(What’s So Funny Bout) Peace, Love and Understanding?”

Transplants, “Something’s Different”

Dead Kennedys, “Holiday In Cambodia”

Fugazi, “Sieve Fisted Find”

Balkans, “I Can’t Compete”

Billy Bragg, “To Have And To Have Not”

Bad Brains, “I And I Survive”

Transplants, “Diamonds And Guns”

FIDLAR, “No Ass” (Seriously, everyone in Alexandria needs to just settle down with all this internal fighting, seize the day, and get them some serious loving before the Wolfboys and their walker army come knocking…just sayin’!)

Liam Lynch, “United States of Whatever”

Transplants, “Tall Cans In The Air”  (Tall cans in the air for Rick Grimes and our gang of hot, sexy, battle-savvy transplants. Alexandria hasn’t been this exciting since, well…ever!)