Jeffrey Dean Morgan reviews the first two episodes of the final season of The Walking Dead, calling the two-parter a "hell of a beginning to the end." The end begins with the two-part season premiere, "Acheron: Part I," premiering August 15 on AMC+ and August 22 on AMC, followed a week later by "Acheron: Part II," both from first-time Walking Dead director Kevin Dowling (The Americans, The Strain, 13 Reasons Why). Season 11 starts with a begrudging alliance between Maggie Rhee (Lauren Cohan) and old enemy Negan (Morgan), who guides a mission for survival that takes Daryl (Norman Reedus) and the Alexandrians deep underground into a walker-filled subway tunnel.
"I just watched first two episodes of the season. Goddamn. I do believe ya'll are gonna LOVE. Hell of a beginning to the end. Strap it on folks," the Negan actor tweeted Friday, tagging Dowling and co-executive producer Jim Barnes, who co-wrote the episode with showrunner Angela Kang. "Directed by the great @kevinDowling_ and written by one of our finest @jcbiii. Very excited for you all to see. Here we go! xojd"
I just watched first two episodes of the season. Goddamn. I do believe ya’ll are gonna LOVE. Hell of a beginning to the end. Strap it on folks. Directed by the great @kevinDowling_ and written by one of our finest @jcbiii. Very excited for you all to see. Here we go! xojd— Jeffrey Dean Morgan (@JDMorgan) August 13, 2021
Barnes, a writer-producer behind Season 10 episodes "Ghosts," "Stalker," "A Certain Doom," and the extended Season 10 episode "One More," previously said The Walking Dead is "going back to [being] scary" in Season 11.
"We're making a concerted effort to put that back into, especially these first two or three, and actually all throughout [the season]. We're exploring things and doing things that I haven't seen done on the show before, which is really exciting," Barnes told the Talk Dead to Me podcast earlier this year. "Just different set pieces and locations, and the fact that we're pulling it off during the pandemic is a testament to the crew in Georgia, it's incredible. It's big, I think I can say that."
With Alexandria at risk of collapse in the wake of the Whisperer War, a potential suicide mission means making the trek to a never-before-seen location from Maggie's years away on the road. The expedition, guided by odd-man-out Negan, must first survive their journey through the subway — all while a new breed of human enemy is on the hunt: the Reapers.
"We're kind of getting back to a road show vibe for a minute. I love Season 1 and 4, I think those are my top two seasons of the show with Terminus and the CDC. That vibe is in there," Barnes said on Talk Dead to Me. "I'm really excited to see what people think of [Season] 11. I think people are going to be surprised in a good way."