Everyday Cosplay: Negan

By now, I’m betting that most of you have seen the season finale of The Walking Dead (and don’t freak out if not, no spoilers in this post), and I’m assuming Negan captivated you as quickly as he captivated me. I mean, it wasn’t a pleasant captivated, not by a long shot.

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Negan is hella terrifying, and a SUPER bad guy–but he’s a bad guy that you just can’t forget. I think he’s the most formidable foe that the group has faced since the Governor. Plus, he’s played by Poppa Winchester, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, happily bringing the Supernatural universe together with the Walking Dead universe.

While this season may have ended on a CRAZY cliffhanger, I just couldn’t manage to shake Negan. Since I couldn’t get him out of my subconscious, I decided I’d commemorate his part in my stress dreams by creating a Negan-inspired everyday cosplay look. Take a peek:

Everyday Negan

 

 

What did you think of Negan? Do you think he’s the toughest enemy Rick and the gang have faced yet, or do you think someone else is? Let me know in the comments!

Everyday Cosplay: Carl Grimes

You guys, ever since I had to bow out of recapping The Walking Dead for The Mary Sue, my Walking Dead life has been a mess. I am currently two–yes, TWO–weeks behind on TWD. I just don’t even know what to do with myself right now, because I know the last two episodes were intense, and remaining out of the loop is just a bit too much for me right now.

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So while I am painfully behind on TWD, I decided to do what I could to keep the walker-fever alive with some CORAL-inspired everyday cosplay. I even included a fancy purse that I found on Etsy that straps around your thigh. And, no spoilers in this post, but I included some sunglasses since Carl’s all about the…um…eyewear these days. Trust me, in this outfit, you’ll NEVER be able to stay in the house*.

Everyday Carl Grimes

 

 

Are you caught up on The Walking Dead? Without giving spoilers, are you enjoying this half of the season so far? Let me know in the comments!

*Okay, I know Carl is way beyond his “where is Carl, I told you to stay in the house, Carl” days, but it will still be one of my favorite TWD inside jokes ever–second only to Rick Grimes dad jokes

The Walking Dead: Nobody’s Safe? Really?

First off, let me just say that I’m sorry for the radio silence around here. I was super sick for the past several days, but it’s all good now!

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Back to the matter at hand! Fandom! Geekery! Zombies!

You may have noticed that I didn’t post a Walking Dead recap this week. Unfortunately, because of huge amounts of scheduling conflicts, I’m not going to be able to recap The Walking Dead at The Mary Sue anymore. It’s a bummer, and I’m so sad to have to miss out. However, I am going to be so incredibly busy in the next few months and I just won’t be able to do a good job for TMS recapping. I don’t know who is going to be taking up the helm, but I’m sure they’ll be great so check ’em out. And don’t worry, I’ll still be live-tweeting the show when I can and writing about the show here when I can.

I was able to watch the mid-season premiere of The Walking Dead, and I had All the Thoughts. So before I jump in, all those not caught up on The Walking Dead be warned:

Spoilers

My thoughts on the premiere? Overall it was a fun episode. It had lots of zombie gore and Daryl saved the day with a rocket launcher twice. Even so, I didn’t fully agree when I tuned in to Talking Dead and Chris Hardwick called it one of the best episodes ever. Why? There was drama. We watched Rick lose Jessie, a woman he was starting to allow himself to fall in love with. We saw Carl get shot, and then Rick got a great monologue where he told Carl he wanted to show Carl the “new world”. Dr. Denise and her Wolf captor had a lot of great character development, but I didn’t think it was the best because it didn’t exactly live up to the expectations I had.

After all, they were calling this premiere one of the bloodiest in a while, and touting how “everyone will NOT survive”. That’s the thing with The Walking Dead. The show always preaches about how “no one is safe” and that every single character could die at any moment. For a while, we all believed them. The early seasons brought us Carol’s husband’s death, Andrea’s sister’s death, T-Dog, Sophia, Dale, Andrea, Herschel, Lori, Tyrese, Beth, Noah, and Shane. All major characters whose deaths were shocking, but since Noah died last season, we haven’t had any big character deaths. You could maybe count Deanna in that, but since we were only just getting to know her, I’d say she wasn’t quite yet to the level of Glenn, Maggie, Michonne, Carol, Rick, or Carl.  Instead of a major character death, we get situations like this:

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In case you can’t tell, in the center of that horde (in front of the magic dumpster) is Glenn Rhee. He survived this by simply scooting and camping out underneath that dumpster. Don’t get me wrong, I’m thrilled that Glenn is alive, but as more episodes go by without major character deaths and the show runners keep saying, “No one is safe!” it makes me wonder. Is that even really true anymore? Do I even want it to be true?

 

Over the past several seasons, they’ve seriously culled the herd of major characters. Now we’re down to a pretty small member of “main characters”–I’d say that’s Rick, Carl, Carol, Daryl, Glenn, Maggie, and Michonne. They all feel almost vital to the show. I can’t imagine The Walking Dead any one of those characters, but still, watching the show knowing that anyone who isn’t in the main bunch (or even the secondary main bunch like Sasha, Abraham, and Eugene) is essentially a Red Shirt really lowers the stakes for me. The Walking Dead is often likened to Game of Thrones, another show notorious for killing off its main characters. That show has killed off loads of highly popular, main characters, and it keeps on killing it in the ratings. It’s kind of awesome to watch a show not knowing exactly who will live and who will die. For a while, that was The Walking Dead, but I fear that they’re moving away from those crazy high stakes that we’ve come to love. Sure, it’s rad to know that our main characters will be safe more often than they’re endangered, but after a while doesn’t that start to remove the urgency of a zombie-ridden, post-apocalyptic world? In the mid-season premiere, there were loads of times where the survivors wiggled away from a near death experience, and by the end of the episode, I almost felt like rolling my eyes.

No, I don’t want any of my walker-fighting babies to die, but part of what I love about TWD is how brutal the world is. If it’s only brutal to Red Shirts, that urgency and moral questioning is gone. Of course, this all could be lulling us into a false sense of security. If you know the story of Negan from the comics–don’t worry, not spoilers here–you know that he will be bringing some serious craziness into the safe lives of our survivors. So it could be that the stakes are just about to get higher.

Ultimately, it’s a fine line to balance, making sure there are enough characters for us to get involved in the show without losing the show’s edge. I don’t want to lose any of my faves, but I also am really concerned that The Walking Dead could potentially be losing its edge by giving in to fan pressure. Of course, only time will tell.

What do you guys think? Is The Walking Dead losing its edge by keeping so many of the core group alive for so long–even in crazy circumstances like Glenn and the dumpster–or is it simply taking time to develop characters before they launch into the next, gut-wrenching story line? Let me know what you think in the comments!  

The Mary Sue Post: Walking Dead Recap

Last night’s episode of The Walking Dead slowed things down a bit and gave us a glimpse into Morgan’s back story. It was great. The acting was spectacular, and the story was compelling. The thing is, after leaving us on the CRAZY cliffhanger that they did last week, I was annoyed that the story not only didn’t address those cliffhangers, but the timeline actually went backwards. Avoiding cliffhangers aside, the episode was a pretty great one. I’m over at The Mary Sue talking about it. Here’s an excerpt:

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…when he encounters a crazed, gun-wielding Morgan creeping around in his yard, instead of killing him, Eastman offers several warnings before knocking Morgan out with his staff and locking him in that living room-jail. Eastman even has sarcastic conversations with Morgan despite the fact that Morgan doesn’t do much beyond screaming “KILL ME!!!!” at him.

Just like Morgan was a godsend for Rick in season one, Eastman was a similar type of “guardian angel” for Morgan. Eastman is incredibly patient, helping Morgan work through his PTSD and offering him a healthier way of living in the midst of the destruction around him. When Morgan explains that he’s still alive only to “clear”—basically kill every single thing he encounters—Eastman insists that all life has value, and that there is a way out of the depths of despair he’s found himself. Slowly but surely, Eastman is able to pull Morgan out of his shell. He protects Eastman’s goat, Eastman begins to train Morgan in aikido, and eventually Morgan is able to level up enough to unlock Eastman’s tragic backstory…

What did you think of the episode? Read the rest of my recap at The Mary Sue and let me know your thoughts in the comments!

The Mary Sue Post: TWD Recap, JSS

Last night’s episode of The Walking Dead was INTENSE, you guys. The episode started off deceptively slow, and then kicked things into high gear and didn’t wind down until the credits rolled. After my meh reaction to Fear the Walking Dead, I’ve loved that the first two episodes of the show ran at fast pace with tons of action. But, I’m breaking all this down over at The Mary Sue. I’d love it if you’d join me over there and let me know what you thought of the episode in the comments! [spoilers ahead, obvs]

Lennie James as Morgan Jones - The Walking Dead _ Season 6, Episode 2 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

Lennie James as Morgan Jones – The Walking Dead _ Season 6, Episode 2 – Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

This week’s episode of The Walking Dead was intense, and sent us on an hour-long adrenaline rush. Before we jump in, be warned that there will be spoilers ahead, and be sure to check out the recap of last week’s episode if you haven’t already.

Essentially, this week’s episode can pretty be much be summed up with this single gif:

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Starting a tad bit before the honking that diverted the walker herd being led by Daryl on his bike, this week’s episode started out pretty slow—some might even say it was a bit boring. Jessie and Ron were fighting over Ron’s behavior and whether or not Rick is a good man. Eugene and Tara were meeting the new Alexandria doctor, Denise—who, though she went to med school, was actually a practicing psychiatrist prior to the walker uprising. Maggie and Deanna were talking about planting crops. Carol was meeting with some of the other Alexandria women talking about pasta makers and quitting smoking. Carl was offering to teach Father Gabriel to fight and getting a little sad because Enid was cozying up to Ron. Carol pops a casserole in the oven, she starts the timer, looks out the window to see her friend smoking …

… and then watches her get hacked to death by a strange man with a machete…

Read the rest at The Mary Sue, and be sure to follow me on Twitter so we can live tweet together during the show!

Survival Guide for the Walking Dead Hiatus

Season 5 of The Walking Dead is in the books, and we’ve all had a few weeks to catch up on the season finale, and fully accept the fact that we are officially in the middle of the show’s summer hiatus. As y’all know, I recapped The Walking Dead at The Mary Sue this season. So I was ALL ABOUT the Ricktatorship this season. Now that the season is officially over, what exactly are we supposed to do? Since we’ve got quite a few months ahead of us, here are some ideas I’ve compiled to help make the time go a bit more quickly:

 Watch Fear the Walking Dead

This one is a no-brainer. A great way to pass the time this hiatus is to jump into another zombie show, right? FTWD is the official spin-off of The Walking Dead that will be airing this summer. Of course, there isn’t an air date for this show, and it still won’t give us clues as to what is happening with Rick and the survivors. So here are a few other options:

Max Brooks’ Novels

Max  Brooks has written a ton of awesome zombie-related books. From World War Z (seriously, read the book, so much better than the movie), The Zombie Survival Guide, to the Recorded Zombie Attacks graphic novel, and more, there is a lot of zombie love to be found in Brooks’ books. Also? Reading is good for your braaaaaaiiiinnnssss

Train!!!

rule 1 cardio

So you’ve read Brook’s zombie survival guide, but now it’s time to complete your preparations: train for the impending apocalypse with Rule #1: Cardio. Check out the Zombies, Run! app to help motivate you in your running endeavors, or check out an actual zombie race in your area. There are tons of different zombie races, but you can start by seeing if there is an official Zombie Run in your area.

Or you could just stay inside and play video games…

l4d witch

Okay, running is fine, but for the rest of the humans out there who aren’t about the “going outside” and “running outside where bugs live” life, there are video games. You can play an actual Walking Dead video game, check out a Call of Duty zombie game, Day ZLeft 4 Dead, or any of the other zillions of zombie video games or apps out there. Best of all? You never have to put on real pants to engage in simulated zombie fighting.

Netflix Binge A New Show

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There is no better time to jump into a new show (or a new-to-you show) like the summer hiatus. For me, I’m watching Breaking Bad for the first time, and I’m completely obsessed. Delving into the world of Heisenberg has been a great way for me to fill that Walking Dead-shaped void in my life. Only problem? Breaking Bad is so completely amazing that I’m already halfway through season four (for those who don’t know, there are only 5 seasons of Breaking Bad). Pace yourselves, friends.

Go to Comic Con!

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The best way to deal with the hiatus is to commiserate with members of your fandom, and there is no better place to meet other members of your fandom than comic con. Summer is when conventions big and small take place, and it’s a great place to talk to other TWD fans about how much you miss the show. If you live in the Colorado area, you should check out Denver Comic Con! I’ll be there, and I’d love to say hey. Even better, there are some cast members from The Walking Dead that will be at DCC like the Governor himself!

Of course, if all else fails, you can just re-watch The Walking Dead starting with season 1, right? It seems like such a long time ago that Rick was confessing his love to Lori…

to me you are perfect

…wait. I’m getting my Andy Lincolns mixed up…Whatever. Close enough.

How are you passing the hiatus of TWD? Let me know in the comments!

The Mary Sue Post: Walking Dead Recap

Anybody else as concerned as I am that Carol and Rick are turning into baddies on The Walking Dead? I’m talking about last night’s episode and what has been dubbed as the “look at the flour” incident over at The Mary Sue today. I hope you’ll join me over there for our weekly therapy session!  The-Walking-Dead-Season-5-Carol-McBride-590

If you aren’t caught up on The Walking Dead, read ahead at your own risk. There will be spoilers!

I’ve been dubious of Alexandria since Sasha and Maggie first met Aaron out in that field. It’s too perfect. The people are too nice. They have all managed to remain too safe in the midst of a giant tragedy. I mean, even Woodbury residents had to deal with walkers tearing down their walls and overrunning their camp before they were able to set up their idyllic little town. But in Alexandria it seems as though people made a beeline for that area once the dead began to walk, and they have been able to chill out in Alexandria and essentially wait for the whole thing to blow over, Shaun of the Dead-style…

Grab a pint and wait for this whole thing to blow over over at The Mary Sue!

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The Mary Sue Post: Walking Dead Recap

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As always, I’m at The Mary Sue today talking about the latest episode of The Walking Dead. I hope you’ll join me over there to chat about last night’s episode, “Remember”! Here’s a quick excerpt for ya:

If you aren’t caught up on The Walking Dead, read on at your own risk. There are spoilers ahead! 

Well, kids, we’ve finally seen the inside of Alexandria Safe Zone. I’ll be honest, it’s kind of great. The homes are gorgeous, the area seems incredibly secure, the people are super nice…

..and I don’t trust it for a damn second.

The episode kicks off as the group goes into Alexandria. Aaron directs Rick to Deanna Monroe, a Congresswoman before the zombie outbreak, and the current leader of the town. She is very gracious towards Rick and the group, despite his haggard appearance and his untrusting, mildly feral attitude–like Daryl killing a possum at the gates, and offering it up as dinner for everyone. Despite all of the group’s quirks, she still takes the time to sit down with each member of the group, gets to know them, and then offers them a job within Alexandria, should they choose to stay.

In addition to the jobs and offers to live in Alexandria, Deanna gives the group two amazing homes to live in. Of course, because they are still skeptical of Deanna and Alexandria…

Read the rest over at The Mary Sue!

The Mary Sue Post: The Walking Dead Recap

I’m over at The Mary Sue recapping last night’s episode of The Walking Dead! I hope you’ll join me over there to talk about last night’s episode.

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Before I jump into the recap, please note there will be spoilers ahead. If you aren’t caught up on The Walking Dead, read at your own risk!

After last week’s slightly unsettling introduction of Aaron, I was ready to get a closer look at him. We haven’t really seen anyone this clean, friendly, and put together since… well, since before the zombie apocalypse. It might be sad, but there is nothing that is a bigger red flag in a zombie apocalypse than a clean, friendly person.

Maggie and Sasha bring Aaron back to the barn to meet with the rest of the group. Aaron admits that he’s been a bit of a creeper, following the group, watching how the respond to threats, and leaving super sketchy piles of water bottles in the middle of the road for Rick and the gang. Understandably, the group is skeptical of Aaron, but at the same time, the idea of a safe, happy town is too amazing an idea to pass up–especially given the group’s decision to keep fighting in last week’s episode.

However, after Terminus and Woodbury, Rick has a seriously tough time trusting Aaron, but ultimately agrees to visit Aaron’s town. The group has a few disagreements with Aaron over how the group will actually get to Aaron’s town, and ultimately decide that the best option is for Rick and the gang to drive themselves… with Aaron tied up in the back seat. After a pretty intense car accident that reminded us all of the importance of windshield wiper fluid, the group is momentarily separated and has to fight through the part of the walker herd that did not end up splattered across the car’s windshield to find safety…

Read the rest over at The Mary Sue!

The Mary Sue Post: Walking Dead Recap

The Walking Dead is officially back in full swing, so that means I’m over at The Mary Sue today talking about last night’s episode! I hope you’ll join me over there to talk about the crazy way The Walking Dead came back from its winter hiatus.

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If you haven’t seen the season 5 mid-season premiere of The Walking Dead, be warned, there are absolutely spoilers ahead!

It’s been a long winter hiatus, especially given the particularly tragic way the first half of Season 5 ended. Jumping into the second half of Season 5, I was certain the worst was behind us–at least for a few episodes.

Yeah, not so much.

This episode picks back up with the group trying to find some sort of direction after the devastating loss of Beth, and Eugene’s unsurprising yet disappointing confession that his “classified” plan to save the world from the infection was nothing more than, well, an unsurprising and disappointing load of crap…

Read the rest over at The Mary Sue!