Daryl Dixon Just Changed Walking Dead Zombies Forever

There’s no going back for The Walking Dead franchise now that Daryl Dixon has revealed zombies can do THIS.

Norman Reedus as Daryl Dixon - The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon _ Season 1, Episode 5
Photo: Emmanuel Guimier | AMC

This article contains spoilers for THE WALKING DEAD: DARYL DIXON episode 5.

Through 11 seasons of The Walking Dead and its countless spinoffs, the zombie franchise’s version of the undead have remained stubbornly static. In keeping with comic creator Robert Kirkman’s original vision, Walking Dead zombies have followed the traditional George A. Romero rules for reanimated corpses. That is to say that the show’s titular walkers were slow, unintelligent, and driven by only a vague notion of hunger.

Of course, that’s all started to change of late (as tends to happen when you have more than a decade of storytelling to fill). The final season of The Walking Dead introduced zombies that could climb ladders and turn doorknobs. The lore-heavy post-credit scene of The Walking Dead: World Beyond suggested that French scientists were aware of (or even complicit in the creation of) “variant cohorts” of the undead. The latest spinoff The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon even revealed that some zombies could be literally hot to the touch. But all of those zombie variations and remixes pale in comparison to what Daryl Dixon (Norman Reedus) encounters in the fifth episode of the series bearing his name. Folks, the super soldier zombies are finally here! And they’re glorious.

The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon and the franchise overall have done a pretty admirable job of warming viewers up to the idea of a massively different and dangerous new genus of zombie. The concept of an acid zombie or “boiler” as Isabelle (Clémence Poésy) calls them is easy enough to wrap one’s head around. Hey, maybe some zombies stumbled into some caustic chemicals. It’s not like they’re very discerning about their environments or diets after all. This penultimate episode “Deux Amours,” however, finally removes all doubt by confirming that the myth of a super zombie is not only real – it’s manmade.


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