The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon
Also known asThe Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon – The Book of Carol (season 2)
Genre
Created byDavid Zabel
Based on
Starring
ComposerDavid Sardy[1]
Country of originUnited States
Original languages
  • English
  • French
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes6
Production
Executive producers
Production locationFrance
Camera setupSingle-camera
Running time48–61 minutes
Production companies
Original release
NetworkAMC
ReleaseSeptember 10, 2023 (2023-09-10) –
present (present)
Related
The Walking Dead

The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon, or simply Daryl Dixon, is an American post-apocalyptic horror drama television series created by David Zabel for AMC, based on The Walking Dead character of the same name. It is the fifth spin-off and overall sixth television series in The Walking Dead franchise, sharing continuity with the other series and set after the conclusion of the original The Walking Dead television series.

In Daryl Dixon, Norman Reedus reprises his role as Daryl Dixon from the original The Walking Dead series. Reedus stars alongside Clémence Poésy, Louis Puech Scigliuzzi, Laïka Blanc-Francard, Anne Charrier, Romain Levi and Adam Nagaitis, all of whom portray new characters. Development of the series began in September 2020, and its title was announced in October 2022. Filming began in Paris that month, with additional casting taking place starting in November. The first season was planned to feature the character Carol Peletier under the series name The Walking Dead: Daryl & Carol, but Carol was written out of the series due to logistical issues involving actress Melissa McBride.

The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon premiered on September 10, 2023. Its first season consists of six episodes. In July 2023, ahead of the first season's release, the series was renewed for a second season. McBride appeared as Carol in the first season finale. The second season of the series will be titled The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon – The Book of Carol, and will feature McBride as a series regular in a return to the show's original concept. A third season is also in development.

Premise

Daryl washes ashore in France (the origin of the zombie virus[2]) and struggles to piece together how he got there and why. The series tracks his journey across a broken but resilient France as he hopes to find a way back home. As he makes the journey, though, the connections he forms along the way complicate his ultimate plan.

Cast and characters

Main

Recurring

Guest


Episodes

Season 1 (2023)

No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date [7]U.S. viewers
(millions) [8]
1"L'âme Perdue"[a]Daniel PercivalDavid ZabelSeptember 10, 2023 (2023-09-10)0.631
Daryl Dixon washes ashore in France and sets out to return to America. He suffers an arm wound upon encountering a new walker variant called "burners". Near Marseille, Daryl encounters Maribelle and her grandfather Guillaume. Henri and Michel, soldiers from a paramilitary group called Pouvoir des Vivants (Power of the Living), attack them and are killed before Maribelle and Guillaume rob Daryl and flee. The pair are caught by Michel's brother Codron, who kills Guillaume and seeks revenge on Daryl on the assumption he killed Michel. Isabelle, a nun for the Union de L'Espoir (Union of Hope), finds Daryl and takes him to her abbey for treatment. She introduces Daryl to Laurent, a young boy the Union believes is the Messiah destined to revive humanity; she believes Daryl is the messenger who must deliver Laurent to the Union contingent in Paris. He rejects the idea and leaves. Codron's men attack the abbey, killing most of the nuns, but Daryl returns and helps to fend off the assailants. Daryl agrees to help in exchange for Isabelle leading him to Le Havre. It's revealed that a Pouvoir ship transporting walker test subjects took Daryl from America, but he instigated a mutiny, destroyed their research and escaped. Genet, the leader of Pouvoir, orders that Daryl be found.
2"Alouette"[b]Daniel PercivalJason Richman & David ZabelSeptember 17, 2023 (2023-09-17)0.564
During the initial outbreak, Isabelle, a drug addict and thief, escapes from Paris with her boyfriend Quinn and her pregnant sister Lily; she ultimately abandons Quinn. Lily dies and gives birth as a walker to Laurent via emergency C-section. In the present, the group loses their mule and are captured by a group of children living in their old preschool with their dying teacher, Madame Dubois. Laurent makes friends with the children, who tell him the nuns are lying to him. Needing a horse, Daryl offers to get medicine for Dubois if one of the children, Lou, helps him raid a nearby castle owned by a man dubbed La Tarasque. Inside, Daryl confronts the man, revealed as an American from Texas named R.J. Gaines, and rescues a boy he has captured. Gaines falls into his own walker moat and is devoured, while the kids rescue Daryl. Meanwhile, Dubois has died, and Daryl encourages Lou to step up as their leader. Daryl's party leaves, but Laurent expresses frustration over secrets kept from him. Codron returns to the abbey where he finds Daryl's recorded message, a picture of Laurent and a map of the group's route to Paris.
3"Paris Sera Toujours Paris"[c]Tim SouthamColine AbertSeptember 24, 2023 (2023-09-24)0.649
After a brief stop in Angers, including a bizarre zombie orchestra performing Boléro, Daryl's group finally reaches Paris. There, after a poignant encounter with a little girl – now a zombie – who used to be Isabelle's neighbor, they meet a community led by a man named Fallou. With their help, Daryl seeks out information on a ship that can return him to America, which leads the group to the Demimonde nightclub and a reunion with Isabelle's ex-boyfriend Quinn. Quinn reveals that he is Laurent's father and demands that Isabelle and Laurent stay with him in exchange for his help. Daryl rejects the deal and prepares to set out on his own after an argument with Isabelle, leading to Laurent running away after overhearing them. Codron meets with Genet, who agrees to let him lead the search for Daryl while her people continue experimenting with walkers. Pouvoir attacks Fallou's community and Isabelle searches for Laurent, while Daryl falls through a roof following a brutal fight with Codron.
4"La Dame de Fer"[d]Tim SouthamShannon GossOctober 1, 2023 (2023-10-01)0.719
Genet begins a search for Laurent, seeking to eliminate him as he is a symbol of hope to people. As part of this, Genet makes a deal with Quinn who seeks Laurent in order to get Isabelle back. After escaping from a flooded building, and having a dream that a praying Laurent is ignored by a mob of walkers, Daryl encounters Antoine who is killed by guerriers, but he helps the dying man to free his pigeons. Reuniting with Isabelle, Daryl tracks Laurent to the ruins of the Eiffel Tower where the boy nearly falls victim to a herd. During the rescue, Laurent is kidnapped by Quinn's men and taken to Demimonde. With the help of a captive, whom he tortures and later abandons to walkers, Daryl sneaks into the nightclub and rescues Laurent while Fallou and his people create a distraction. Daryl overpowers Quinn while Anna, disgruntled by Quinn's obsession with Isabelle, lets them go. Having fallen in love with Emile, Sylvie decides to stay in Paris with him while Isabelle decides to stay in order to get Quinn to help secure Daryl and Laurent passage out as Genet locks the city down. Daryl and Laurent leave Paris on a boat heading to the Nest, the Union's main base.
5"Deux Amours"[e]Daniel PercivalJason Richman & David ZabelOctober 8, 2023 (2023-10-08)0.628
In Maine, Daryl helps to capture walkers in exchange for fuel he needs to get home. He briefly makes contact with Carol, who tells him someone has come back. After Juno murders a young man whom Daryl was mentoring, an altercation between the two causes them to be put on the Pouvoir ship; the two work together to escape, but Juno is torn apart by one of Pouvoir's test subjects who displays enhanced abilities similar to multiple variants. In the present, Isabelle struggles to adjust to being with Quinn again, even considering killing him with a knife, and receives a hidden message from Sylvie, Fallou, and Emile. Isabelle agrees to join a Pouvoir celebration with Quinn, only to have a jealous Anna betray them. Daryl, Laurent and Azlan continue their journey to the Nest, but Azlan is killed during a fight with several walkers. Before dying, he reveals that the Nest is at Mont-Saint-Michel, but Laurent cuts a rope and lets their boat float off, wishing to go to America with Daryl instead. The two and Quinn are captured by guerriers and Genet coerces Laurent into making a show of support at an event she holds, where Genet pits Daryl in a gladiator fight against one of her enhanced walkers, unaware that Sylvie, Fallou and Emile have infiltrated the event.
6"Coming Home"Daniel PercivalJason Richman & Laura SnowOctober 15, 2023 (2023-10-15)0.688
After Daryl kills the walker, Daryl and Quinn, chained together, kill several enhanced walkers in the arena before Fallou kills the guerrier Genet ordered to shoot them. In the chaos that follows, the group escapes, with a bitten Quinn sacrificing himself to buy Daryl time, but he reanimates, forcing Laurent to put his biological father down with Daryl's encouragement. After going their separate ways from Fallou and Emile, Daryl's group resumes journeying towards Mont-Saint-Michel, but are attacked by Genet's men. Unable to kill a child, Codron shoots the other guerriers instead, promising to get revenge on Daryl later. Upon his return, Genet deduces Codron's betrayal and has him tortured for information. Daryl's group finally reaches the Nest where they settle in. Daryl becomes conflicted between staying in France and returning to America. Union of Hope leader Losang arranges passage to Newfoundland for Daryl, who chooses to leave despite Isabelle's comparing his abandoning Laurent to Daryl's abandonment by his own father. At the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial, Daryl visits the grave of his grandfather, William T. Dixon, who died on D-Day. On Omaha Beach, Daryl prepares to board a boat, but hesitates when he sees Laurent secretly followed him and has a herd of walkers closing in on him. Near Freeport, Maine, Carol searches for Daryl, finding his motorcycle. After Carol captures its hostile rider, he directs Carol to where he found it.

Season 2

The first through third episodes were written by Shannon Goss, Keith Staskiewicz, and Lisa Zwerling, respectively; episodes four through six were written by Jason Richman and David Zabel, with Laura Snow receiving story credit for episode six.[10] Season two is titled The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon – The Book of Carol.[5]

Production

Development

The series was announced in September 2020 by Angela Kang and Scott M. Gimple. Reedus and McBride signed on to reprise their respective roles from the television series.[11]

In April 2022, McBride exited the series due to logistical reasons as the show was set to film in mid-2022 in Europe and it wasn't possible for McBride to be with the show with this setup. The series was reworked as a sole Daryl project.[12] Days later, Kang had left the role of showrunner and was replaced by David Zabel. The deal had reportedly been sealed in recent weeks before McBride's exit from the show.[13] In October, the series was given the title Daryl Dixon.[14] In January 2023, it was announced that the series would be titled The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon and premiere later in 2023.[15] In July 2023, ahead of the first season's release, the series was renewed for a second season.[16] The second season has the subtitle of The Book of Carol.[5] A third season was in development by February 2024.[17]

Writing

In September 2020, Kang was hired as showrunner after she had helmed the final three seasons of The Walking Dead.[11]

In April 2022, Kang stepped down due to other commitments and Zabel took the role. Scripts were already being written by this time but needed to be reworked following McBride's departure.[12] In September, in an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Reedus explained that the series would be going an opposite direction from the main series having it being a completely different story from what we have already seen with Daryl.[3] The following month, Reedus said that there would be familiar faces from the main series in the spin-off.[18]

Casting

In November 2022, Clémence Poésy and Adam Nagaitis were added to the main cast.[4] In February 2023, Anne Charrier, Eriq Ebouaney, Laïka Blanc-Francard, Romain Levi and Louis Puech Scigliuzzi were announced as additional cast members.[19] In June 2023, The Walking Dead alum Jeffrey Dean Morgan indicated in a tweet that Melissa McBride would reprise her role as Carol Peletier in some capacity.[20] In October 2023, at New York Comic Con, McBride was confirmed to return for the second season, as well as guest starring in the first season finale.[5]

In November 2023, Manish Dayal was confirmed to recur in the second season.[21]

Filming

Principal photography began on October 24, 2022, in Paris, France.[22] Filming on the second season had begun in Europe, continuing during the 2023 SAG-AFTRA strike due to an agreement between AMC and SAG-AFTRA to continue filming on the series.[23] Filming for the second season wrapped on December 21, 2023.[24]

Release

The series premiered on September 10, 2023, on AMC and AMC+.[25] The second season, subtitled The Book of Carol, will premiere in 2024.[5]

Reception

The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon has received positive reviews from critics, with several calling it the best Walking Dead content in years, although some noted its similarities to The Last of Us television series.[26] On Rotten Tomatoes, the first season has an approval rating of 71% based on 38 reviews with an average rating of 8.2/10. The website's critics consensus is, "Centering Norman Reedus' fan favorite character in a fresh setting, Daryl Dixon can be a wobbly shot across the crossbow but still gives The Walking Dead faithful plenty more to chew on."[27] Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, assigned a score of 68 out of 100 based on 15 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[28]

David Opie of Digital Spy gave it a 4/5 rating and called it "The best Walking Dead has been in ages".[29] Chase Hutchinson of Collider gave it a "B" rating and applauded Norman Reedus' "stoic performance" that has a "renewed energy to the character and making the spin-off worth watching" and that the series "focuses more on character and emotion rather than empty spectacle, giving the story a greater sense of depth."[30] Aaron Pruner of TheWrap gave it a positive review and noted Clémence Poésy's "standout performance" and concluded that it "is a surprisingly gorgeous, soul-stirring, and riveting watch. Norman Reedus said they were making art with this show. And you know what? He wasn't lying."[31]

Notes

  1. ^ French for "The Lost Soul"[9]
  2. ^ French for "Lark"[9]
  3. ^ French for "Paris Will Always Be Paris"[9]
  4. ^ French for "The Lady of Iron"[9]
  5. ^ French for "Two Loves"[9]

References

  1. ^ "David Sardy Scoring AMC's 'The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon'". Film Music Reporter. September 6, 2023. Retrieved September 8, 2023.
  2. ^ Elvy, Craig (February 21, 2023). "The Walking Dead's Zombie Outbreak Virus Origin Explained". Screen Rant. Retrieved July 26, 2023.
  3. ^ a b Ross, Dalton (September 15, 2022). "Norman Reedus says his Walking Dead spin-off will be 'f---ing epic'". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved October 10, 2022.
  4. ^ a b c Otterson, Joe (November 7, 2022). "'Walking Dead's' Daryl Dixon Spinoff Casts Clémence Poésy, Adam Nagaitis". Variety. Retrieved November 8, 2022.
  5. ^ a b c d e Goldberg, Lesley (October 12, 2023). "Melissa McBride Returns to 'Walking Dead' Spinoff 'Daryl Dixon'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 12, 2023.
  6. ^ Opie, David (September 24, 2023). "Paloma explains the Drag Race/Walking Dead crossover you never expected to see". Digital Spy. Retrieved October 1, 2023.
  7. ^ "Shows A-Z – walking dead, the: daryl dixon on amc". The Futon Critic. Retrieved July 22, 2023.
  8. ^ "The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon: Season One Ratings". TV Series Finale. September 12, 2023. Retrieved September 12, 2023.
  9. ^ a b c d e Hansen, Renee (July 16, 2023). "Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon spinoff, release date, trailer & more". Undead Walking. Retrieved September 23, 2023.
  10. ^ "The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon". Writers Guild of America West. Retrieved January 23, 2024.
  11. ^ a b O'Dell, Johnny (September 9, 2020). "Fourth Walking Dead Series Starring Norman Reedus & Melissa McBride Announced". Skybound. Retrieved September 9, 2020.
  12. ^ a b Ausiello, Michael (April 27, 2022). "Walking Dead Shocker: Melissa McBride Exits Daryl and Carol-Centric Spinoff". TVLine. Retrieved April 27, 2022.
  13. ^ Rosy Cordero, Dominic Patten (April 29, 2022). "Norman Reedus 'Walking Dead' Spinoff Adds David Zabel As New Showrunner; Angela Kang To Remain As EP". Deadline. Retrieved May 1, 2022.
  14. ^ Laudenbach, Sarah (October 4, 2022). "The Walking Dead's Daryl Spinoff Gets Official Title". ScreenRant. Retrieved October 10, 2022.
  15. ^ "AMC Networks Announces Premiere Timing for New Series in The Walking Dead Universe and Reveals First Look at Fear the Walking Dead's Eighth and Final Season" (Press release). AMC. January 10, 2023. Retrieved January 10, 2023.
  16. ^ Goldberg, Lesley (July 21, 2023). "'Walking Dead' Spinoffs 'Dead City,' 'Daryl Dixon' Renewed at AMC". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved July 21, 2023.
  17. ^ Flook, Ray (February 10, 2024). "'The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon Season 3 Set; "The Ones Who Live" Teaser". Bleeding Cool. Retrieved February 11, 2024.
  18. ^ Bonomolo, Cameron (October 11, 2022). "Daryl Dixon: Norman Reedus Teases "Familiar Faces" on TWD Spinoff". Comicbook.com. Retrieved October 13, 2022.
  19. ^ Mason, Charlie (February 10, 2023). "The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon: AMC Unveils Spinoff's Full Cast". TVLine. Retrieved February 10, 2023.
  20. ^ Navarro, Meagan (June 22, 2023). "Melissa McBride May Appear in "The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon" After All". Bloody Disgusting. Retrieved June 22, 2023.
  21. ^ Petski, Denise (November 9, 2023). "Daryl Dixon: Manish Dayal Joins Season 2 Cast Of Norman Reedus' Walking Dead Spinoff". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved November 10, 2023.
  22. ^ Bonomolo, Cameron (October 24, 2022). "TWD: Daryl Dixon Begins Filming in France". Comicbook.com. Retrieved November 7, 2022.
  23. ^ White, Peter; Rice, Lynette (August 31, 2023). "'The Walking Dead' Spinoffs & 'Interview With A Vampire' To Resume Production As AMC Networks Strikes Significant Agreements With SAG-AFTRA". Deadline. Retrieved August 31, 2023.
  24. ^ Hansen, Renee (December 22, 2023). "The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon wraps season 2, cast post images". Undead Walking. Retrieved December 23, 2023.
  25. ^ Otterson, Joe (July 14, 2023). "'Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon' Sets September Premiere Date at AMC". Variety. Retrieved July 15, 2023.
  26. ^ Hibberd, James (September 5, 2023). "'Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon' Critic Reviews Strong Despite 'Last of Us' Comparisons". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved September 5, 2023.
  27. ^ "The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon (2023)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved November 11, 2023.
  28. ^ "The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon: Season 1". Metacritic. Retrieved November 11, 2023.
  29. ^ Opie, David (September 5, 2023). "Walking Dead's Daryl Dixon spinoff review: The best Walking Dead has been in ages". Digital Spy. Retrieved September 5, 2023.
  30. ^ Hutchinson, Chase (September 5, 2023). "'The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon' Review: Norman Reedus Gets His Own 'The Last of Us'". Collider. Retrieved September 5, 2023.
  31. ^ Pruner, Aaron (September 5, 2023). "'The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon' Review: AMC Spin-Off Could Revive the Stale Franchise". TheWrap. Retrieved September 5, 2023.