Zombie movies often give viewers a snapshot of the zombie apocalypse, leaving fans discussing not only what happens next, but what started it. Robert Kirkman is one such fan and he's stated multiple times that The Walking Dead was, in part, his answer to George A. Romero's living dead movies not giving us a look at what's next. However, much like Romero's zombie movies, fans of The Walking Dead are always asking about what happened before Rick Grimes wakes from his coma and Robert Kirkman is filling in one major gap with Fear The Walking Dead.

Taking place in Los Angeles during the early days of the zombie outbreak, Fear The Walking Dead is a very different show from what many were expecting when they first heard that a companion series was in the works, and that's a very good thing if you can adjust your expectations accordingly.

Imagine what would happen if a supposed zombie video popped up on YouTube or scattered reports of savage attacks were posted on Twitter, and you can get a good idea of the state of the world at the start of Fear The Walking Dead. Something is happening, but most people aren't aware and many are skeptical.

For all intents and purposes, Fear The Walking Dead starts as a family drama that just happens to take place during the beginning of a zombie outbreak. In the first episode, which clocks in around one hour without commercials, there's a strong focus on family topics, including dealing with divorce as parent and child, drug addiction, and new relationships. Characters played by Cliff Curtis, Kim Dickens, and Frank Dillane are the main focus of the first episode and the pilot does a great job of setting them up as complex characters that you're invested in after a short period of time. Unlike Rick Grimes, Cliff Curtis' Travis Manawa isn't a police officer and isn't prepared for what he's about to face. It will be very interesting to see which characters are able to adapt and survive during the onset of a zombie pandemic.

It's worth noting that Fear The Walking Dead is visually quite different than The Walking Dead. A big part of this is due to the fact that Frank Darabont went with 16mm when he shot the pilot for The Walking Dead, which gives it a very different look than your standard TV show, and they continue to use 16mm to this day. On the other hand, Fear The Walking Dead is shot digitally, which gives it a cleaner look, but it still works, especially with the location and scale of this show. Setting the show in one of the largest cities in the world could allow for some massive outbreak scenes, and it would be great to see something on the scale of World War Z in the world of The Walking Dead.

Again, it's important for me to stress that this is the start of The Walking Dead. Think of it as "The Walking Dead Begins" if that helps. You're not going to get the zombie count we saw in The Walking Dead pilot, where walkers flood the streets in Atlanta. With that said, you'll definitely see zombies in the first episode of Fear The Walking Dead, with the expectation that their numbers will continue to grow each episode. While the look of the zombies are definitely more subtle, because the walkers aren't at the same state of decay as they are in the original series, there are a couple of good scenes that push the limits of special effects makeup.

Fear The Walking Dead's first episode isn't trying to sell you on the series the way many pilots do, so it will likely feel a bit different. Building upon the success of The Walking Dead, it's known that there's already a fanbase for this show and AMC has already committed to two seasons, with the hope that we're invested enough to stay tuned.

With some great acting, top-notch makeup effects, and complex characters, I've seen enough to get me excited for what's to come, as this first episode appears to just be the calm before the never-ending zombie storm. We already know what these characters are heading into. The interesting part is going to be watching who makes it to the end, how they get there, and the new ways the creative team will get us to Fear The Walking Dead.