It's hard to say if television networks care one whit about their viewers, as evidenced by the fact that Two and a Half Men is still on the air. But look beyond ABC, CBS and NBC and look to the likes of channels like AMC. Those people care.
Joining the ranks of highly rated, non-traditional shows Breaking Bad and Mad Men comes a new show with an all-too-familiar theme. The Walking Dead (Sunday nights, AMC) is a post-apocalyptic zombie series created for TV by Oscar-nominee Frank Darabont (Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile) and based on a comic book by Robert Kirkman. Yes, a series. It sounds like an impossible undertaking, but this stark, gritty, visceral, terrifying show is coupled with big-budget movie-worthy cinematography and is brilliant.
Taking its cues from both 28 Days Later and I Am Legend, blue-eyed police officer Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) is wounded in a shoot out. He wakes up from a coma all alone in the hospital--except for something or someone groaning behind a chained door. Rick finds hundreds of bodies, wrapped in body bags, in a parking area outside. As he races home to find his wife and child, he passes through a town far too quiet. He soon learns that his town is overrun by "walkers," aka zombies. His family is nowhere in sight. Rick decides to search for them, so dons his cop uniform, commandeers a surprisingly uneaten horse, and heads toward Atlanta. It turns out that the city is the last place a non-infected human should be looking for anything ... except a place to hide.
Thank you, AMC, for showing you care. Now hold my hand. I'm scared to death.