This new look at ‘Daryl Dixon’ season 2 makes me excited about ‘The Walking Dead’ again

Melissa Mcbride as Carol Peletier in The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon - The Book of Carol
(Image credit: AMC)

After years of ups and downs, my enthusiasm for "The Walking Dead" had waned. The universe that once had me glued to my screen had started to lose its luster, with storylines that felt drawn out and character arcs that didn't always satisfy. I wondered if the franchise could ever recapture the magic that made it a phenomenon in the first place.

But now, with some first-look photos and the announcement of the release date for "Daryl Dixon" season 2, my excitement is back. I truly believe this show could make the "Walking Dead" universe even better. The new images and details hint at a thrilling continuation that promises to breathe new life into the undead franchise. 

Norman Reedus' iconic portrayal of Daryl Dixon has always been a highlight, and it looks like this season will put him front and center in a way that fans have been longing for. 

On June 6, it was announced that “Daryl Dixon” season 2 (named “Book of Carol”), will be released on September 29 this year. Reedus had teased via an Instagram story that the spinoff would land on our screens in the summer, but that seems to have changed.  

Also, can we take a minute to look at the photo they used in the announcement post? It’s easy to ignore if you’re too focused on the release date, but it could hint at something exciting to come in the spinoff. 

"Daryl Dixon" season 1 ended on a cliffhanger, setting up significant plot threads for the upcoming season. It saw Daryl making a crucial decision about his future and the responsibility he feels towards Laurent (Louis Puech Scigliuzzi) and the group. But most of all, it seemed as though Daryl chose to stay with his new friends rather than return home to Alexandria. This means he and the others are still at the Nest, a historic island village used as a remote safe haven. 

We can clearly see the Nest in the announcement photo surrounded by strange-looking figures. Of course, it makes sense for them to be groups of walkers, but it could also tease another threat, one that might seriously harm this community. 

Beloved characters are back in action

This new look reveals the beginning of Carol’s (Melissa McBride) journey to find Daryl, and it all starts with her finding his motorcycle. Carol is set to play a significant role in "Daryl Dixon" season 2. Her presence is expected to bring a dynamic and familiar element to the show, as she has been an incredibly important character in "The Walking Dead" universe. Now, she’ll finally reunite with her best friend in France as they navigate new challenges together. 

While specific plot details are still under wraps, we do have a synopsis that reads: “They both confront old demons while she fights to find her friend and he struggles with his decision to stay in France, causing tension at the Nest. Additionally, Genet's (Anne Charrier) movement builds momentum, setting Pouvoir on a violent collision course with the Union of Hope in the fight for France's future."

Norman Reedus as Daryl Dixon in his The Walking Dead spinoff

(Image credit: AMC)

On the other hand, Daryl will continue to be the central figure, and this new photo sees him in the thick of the action. His primary role will involve grappling with his decision to stay in France and the responsibilities that come with it. Daryl's loyalty and sense of duty will be tested as he works to protect those he cares about, including his new companions and the community at the Nest.

With the emergence of Genet's movement and the escalating conflict between Pouvoir and the Union of Hope, Daryl will likely play a key role in the struggle for France's future. It’s going to be a tough season to watch, especially since “The Walking Dead” isn’t afraid to kill off key characters if the story demands it. 

‘The Walking Dead’ is finally making a comeback

After months of silence from this franchise, it seems as though “The Walking Dead” universe is ready for a major revival. We were recently treated to an exciting first look at “Dead City” season 2, which will see the return of Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) and Maggie (Lauren Cohan) as they struggle to fight against new threats, and each other. This spinoff is slated for release in 2025. 

“The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live” also focused on Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) as he fought his way back to his family in Alexandria. Now with season 1 finished, it wouldn’t be a surprise if we saw him again in upcoming spinoffs. It’s also possible we’ll get a huge mind-blowing crossover in the future that brings every beloved survivor back together again. 

During AMC’s panel at the Television Critics Association press tour, “The Walking Dead” boss Scott Gimple said: “So when it comes to something like a crossover event between the new spinoffs, yeah, I do have dreams of merging this all together, and I have laid little breadcrumbs toward that, but you never know exactly when and how because of a variety of reasons… I will just say, I’m building those pathways, but there could be all sorts of pivots along the way.”

So, yes, I can safely say that I’m finally excited about “The Walking Dead” franchise again, especially after seeing Daryl and Carol back in action. Whether you're a long-time fan or someone who drifted away, "Daryl Dixon" season 2 just might be the reason to fall back in love with this apocalyptic universe.  

For now, you can stream the first season of "Daryl Dixon" on AMC Plus.

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Alix Blackburn
Staff Writer, Streaming

Alix is a Streaming Writer at Tom’s Guide, which basically means watching the best movies and TV shows and then writing about them. Previously, she worked as a freelance writer for Screen Rant and Bough Digital, both of which sparked her interest in the entertainment industry. When she’s not writing about the latest movies and TV shows, she’s either playing horror video games on her PC or working on her first novel.