Norman Reedus gets a motorcycle reality show on AMC because why not

29 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

‘Walking Dead’ Star Scores Biker Reality Show on AMC.

The Walking Dead’s Norman Reedus will host a new reality series that explores motorcycle culture in various American cities, scheduled to premiere on AMC in 2016.

AMC announced today that Norman Reedus, who plays fan favorite Daryl Dixon on the hit zombie-apocalypse show, will host an all-new unscripted series about motorcycle culture and history in the U.S. Tentatively titled “Ride With Norman Reedus,” the series will start off with six one-hour episodes, featuring Reedus traveling the country and speaking with collectors, mechanics and motorcycle craftsmen.

Very much in line with the comparable game from last fall, it was still up six percent in early ratings for a 9.3 overnight rating among metered market households. The pair will visit mechanics, builders and riders; showcase different motorcycles, like minis or cruisers; and make pit stops at tattoo parlors, roadside smokehouses or collector’s warehouses.

The ABC block of The Middle (1.9 adults), The Goldbergs (2.1 adults), Black-ish (1.9 adults) and Nashville (1.1 adults) were all steady — even with the lack of an original Modern Family. CBS’ lineup — Survivor (2.0 adults), Criminal Minds (1.6 adults), Code Black (1.1 adults) — and NBC’s block — Mysteries of Laura (1.1 adults), Chicago P.D. (1.5 adults) — were similarly steady. The network is also set to premiere the second installment of their docu-drama The Making of the Mob next year, with a focus on Al Capone’s Chicago; and a new documentary series, The American West, executive produced by Robert Redford, was recently greenlit.

Similar to Jerry Seinfeld’s web series, Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, Reedus’ show will feature a “riding companion — a fellow actor, musician, friend, or local chopper fanatic who shares his passion for motorcycles” for each trip. “I’m incredibly excited and thankful to AMC for giving me the opportunity to share a passion of mine with our fans, and hopefully a whole new audience,” Reedus said in a statement. “I had a lot of fun filming and exploring, and I hope it shows.” Fingers crossed this doesn’t mean anything negative for Daryl’s future on The Walking Dead. But this one makes sense for the network, who have three shows already that involve “The Walking Dead” universe – the companion series “Fear the Walking Dead” and “Talking Dead,” a talk-show that airs after each episode of “The Walking Dead.” Reedus’s character, Daryl, is often seen on the series riding motorcycles. Ahead of Season Four, Reedus told Rolling Stone why he chose to live outside Atlanta, where the show shoots, instead of in the city proper. “I like Atlanta, but there’s a mall and a Chick-fil-A,” Reedus said. “What do I need to go up there if I live in Manhattan? I’d rather be out here on the country roads, driving home.” 2015 may not bring everything that Back to the Future II promised it would: flying cars, self-lacing shoes, we don’t see ’em happening over the next 12 months. (Then again, don’t bet against Nike.) But this year will definitely pack plenty of punch when it comes to cultural happenings.

Mad Max will roar back out of the apocalypse while Mad Men rides off into the sunset, rock’s Antichrist Superstar and hip-hop’s Yeezus will rise again. At the end of the series’ very first episode, Rick Grimes was penned-in by zombies in downtown Atlanta with little hope of escape — then he heard the voice of a friendly stranger over the radio, calling him a “dumbass.” That stranger, a former pizza-delivery guy named Glenn Rhee, saved our hero’s life. Now, in this week’s episode — entitled, appropriately enough, “Thank You” — Glenn calls his buddy “dumbass” one last time, via a radio message he delivers from a walker-infested small-town shopping plaza. His hand-written note of gratitude ultimately ends up on the ground, trampled by the undead as its author dies screaming — not too long after Glenn mentions that he has a wife, too. As our heroes try to salvage the plan and get back to safety, Rick tells Glenn and Michonne that there are too many walkers ahead of them for their party to survive intact; he stresses that they shouldn’t hesitate to leave the weak and wounded behind.

It’s an impressive, horrifying spectacle, captured by director Michael Slovis in a series of overhead shots that make the walkers look like an unstoppable force of nature. He puts his faith in Nicholas, the ASZ coward he’s been trying to teach to be stronger; and the other man’s indecision leads them into a blocked-off alley, where they quickly run out of ammunition. Nicholas panics and shoots himself in the head (after saying, “Thank you”) and they both fall into the horde, where Glenn’s ripped apart, fully conscious.

The death comes with about 15 minutes remaining in “Thank You,” leaving the rest of the episode to compare the lesson — that it’s cruel to be kind — with what our surviving heroes are going through. And Rick, having shocked the Alexandrians with how callously he kills and scavenges, shocks himself when he guns down some humans who are trying to commandeer his RV, then goes through their pockets and finds jars of baby food. Right about now, this show’s fans fans are probably going through a similar intellectual wrestling match, trying to decide whether this latest twist is one too many.

Most TV dramas, even the bloodiest, promise to keep at least a few major characters front-and-center, so that viewers will have someone reliable and likable to follow through the worst of times. But like Game of Thrones, our weekly dose of zombie-apocalypse drama has always been a show where the stakes are high and meaningful, and where anyone can die at any time.

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