There are always a ton of facts about tv shows that can be extremely fascinating, and one of those shows are The Walking Dead. I learn a lot more the more I dive into the show. So, I will be doing an article series where I will give the 10 fascinating facts of every season of The Walking Dead. I will be starting with the 1st season of the show, which was a very great season that sparked the beginning of one of the best TV Series ever made. So, let’s get into the list. Here are the 10 fascinating facts about Season 1 of AMC’s The Walking Dead.

10. There are many references to Stephen King in the 1st Season.

Stephen King is an American author known for his work in horror, supernatural fiction, suspense, crime, science fiction, and fantasy novels. Some of his most notable works include The Shining, IT, and The Dark Tower, among others. Did you know that both Frank Darabont and Stephen King are also close friends? Darabont wanted to include a few references to King in the series, and there are two main ways he did that in Season 1.

The first involves a reference to King’s The Shining using the number 217. The show cleverly incorporates this in two ways: when Rick wakes up from his coma, the clock reads 2:17, and later, when Test Subject 19 (TS-19) transforms into a walker, the process takes 2 hours, 1 minute, and 7 seconds.

The second way the show honors King is by naming a fictional country. King County, Georgia, is a fictional county created as a nod to Stephen King, as confirmed in the commentary track. It’s fascinating to see these references to King, who deserves the recognition for his numerous literary masterpieces.

9. Days Gone Bye was originally going to be a 2 hour episode

Days Gone Bye is the name of the pilot episode of The Walking Dead. It is one of the few episodes that is around 90 minutes long and it is a masterpiece. The original plan, though, was for this episode to be two hours long.

According to Frank Darabont in an interview that he did before the season was about to take off he all but confirmed that the original plan was for there to be a two hour episode. However there were scenes that were cut from the show and some were put into different episodes. Not only that, but it was agreed that the script would also be split into two episodes instead.

It was probably for the best. It would not be a great idea for the first episode to be two hours long, as that is a bit much for a first episode of a show to showcase. Plus, there were five more episodes that needed content and they needed to be good as well.

8. Norman Reedus got legit injured filming his first scenes as Daryl in the show

When discussing injuries involving Norman Reedus, many people often mention the concussion he suffered in Season 11 of the show. However, there was another memorable injury that occurred while Reedus was filming in Season 1.

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The injury took place on the first day of filming on set. It happened during a scene where his character, Daryl, was in a fight against Shane. While filming that scene, Reedus got injured, suffering from severe whiplash and even acquiring some nasty scratches and cuts on his back. Despite these injuries, he soldiered through the filming process and managed to complete every scene he was scheduled to be a part of that day.

7. The 2009 Dodge Challenger Glenn drives is the same car used in Breaking Bad

Many recognize the Blue Meth on Merle’s/Daryl’s Bike in Season 2, but an often-forgotten reference on the show was the Dodge Challenger that Glenn was driving back to camp. Well, did you know that not only is that car the same one that was in Breaking Bad, but it is the actual car that was utilized on both sets of the show? That’s right, in the Breaking Bad universe, that car was the one that Walter White wanted to buy for his son. Want to know another crazy fact? In Breaking Bad, Walter was supposed to sell the car, and guess who the buyer’s name was going to be? If you guessed Glenn, you would be correct.

The show did this well, referencing the most successful AMC series ever and finding a way to save money by reusing a prop from a different show. This was so cool, and it seemed like Steven Yeun was enjoying himself while driving the car.

6. The Backstory behind Edwin Jenner’s name

This fact is actually a pretty unique one. Of course, in The Walking Dead universe the only remaining doctor at the CDC trying to attempt to find a cure for the apocalypse is named Dr. Edwin Jenner. The thing is that Jenner’s name actually has deeper value.

The name was actually a tribute to famed doctor Edward Jenner, who is basically the Father of Immunology and even developed one of the first vaccines to the smallpox disease. It is a touching tribute to one of the most important medical inventions in human history.

5. Jacqui was originally going to be killed off in an earlier episode

In the Season 1 commentary, the producers and directors revealed that the character Jacqui from the 1st season was not originally going to be killed in the season finale. While it was not specified the specific moment they were going to originally kill her off, but the original plan was to only have her be in 1 or 2 episodes. If I were to guess, she was either going to be killed in Episode 2 when the group was escaping Atlanta or at the camp when zombies were attacking the group.

However, the writers and producers decided not to, and Jacqui got more episodes in the show. Which is great for Jeryl Prescott Sales, the actress who played Jacqui More episode involvements mean she got more money than originally anticipated, so good for her.

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4. Greg Nicotero cameoed as a the walker that bites Amy because they didn’t fully trust extras

Greg Nicotero is one of the biggest reasons The Walking Dead succeeded. If you don’t know, Nicotero was the Special Effects Creator of the show involved with a lot of the zombie props and other effects. He has even acted and directed a bit on the show as well.

Nicotero has also done many cameos in the show as a walker, and Season 1 is the most fascinating instance of the bunch. This occurred in Season 1, Episode 4, “Vatos,” where at the end of the episode, a horde of Zombies attacks the Atlanta Group resulting in a lot of deaths. The biggest one is when Andrea’s sister Amy was bitten by a zombie multiple times. The craziest part is that the zombie that bit Amy was a zombified Greg Nicotero. Many think that this was strictly done for just a cameo, but immediate assumptions are shot down.

A big reason why Nicotero was in the The Walking Dead as a walker was not only for reasons of a cameo, but both Darabont and Nicotero wanted the scene done with more finesse and properly. Both felt more confident that Nicotero would have done it properly compared to an extra, as there was a special technique that Nicotero wanted done. Which is the right idea because this was a big moment in the show, and this was in the earlier years of the show where they did not know if a season 2 would happen. It also helps in the development of Andrea’s character, which they had big plans for in the show. I say Nicotero did a great job in the scene as a walker, and he kept cameoing throughout the direction of the series.

3. The Cast Suffered from extreme heat exhaustion through most of the filming outdoors

The crazy part about the 1st season behind the scene is that the crew filmed in brutal conditions. It was mostly 100 degree weather that the actors had to film in and even the Walkers as well with some of the walkers scene. The weather was so bad at times that a lot of people were fainting during the show due to the extreme weather. The heat was so bad that according to Norman Reedus (The Actor that plays Daryl Dixon in the show) there were a ton of Emergen-C drink mix on set, just to help with the fatigue issues that they were dealing with.

2. Robert Kirkman hated the CDC episodes

Throughout the entire journey of AMC’s The Walking Dead, I just find it fascinating what the creator of the comics would believe about episodes of the show. In Season 1, Robert Kirkman was outspoken on the pros and cons of it. When it comes to season one, Kirkman was outspoken on the CDC episodes and he was not a fan of those CDC episodes in the show. He felt that the CDC episode revealed too much information about the apocalypse and felt like it was a missed opportunity for it to be focused on later in the episode. he was even once quoted saying the following.

“If I had to do it again, I wouldn’t have done the CDC episode. It possibly gave away too much information and was such a big change very early on in the series. I feel like there might have been a better way to wrap up the first season. But there were things in that episode that I think seem very much not of The Walking Dead world. I’ve been careful in the comic series to not say what’s happening in other parts of the world. It’s something that’s going to be fun to explore in the spin-off series. But the fact that France is mentioned in that episode and other things like that, I probably would have steered away from that stuff if I had to do it all over again.”

That is super telling that the creator of the comics was not a fan of the CDC episodes. Now to me, I can see why many are not fans of this episode, but I personally liked the CDC episodes, except for the Grenade with the Blue handle bollocks.

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1. A Swat Team was called in while the show was filming a scene

Well now this is a super crazy fact about the 1st season. So, this event occured during the scene where Merle starts shooting off his gun on the roof top. A lot of people aroiund the area including neigbors were super concerned as all they saw is a man with a sniper rifle on the roof of a building. The neigbors did not realize that they were filming for a show and decided to call the police.

Of course with hearing someone has a sniper rifle on a roof, the SWAT team was usually called and they actually showed up to the set. The producers had to explain to the SWAT Team that they had permission to film there and the snipe rifle was a prop to the show. Fortunately, no one was arrested or shot when they came in and filming of the show continued as usual. But it is just crazy that an actual SWAT Team was being called to the scene of a show filming.

So, those are the 10 fascinating facts about the first season of The Walking Dead. Do you agree with this list? What other facts did you find fascinating that were not listed in this article? Let me know in the comment section, and don’t forget to give the article a like as well.

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