"story matters here" (not)
anyway, my faith was more than affirmed when AMC introduced their second series, "breaking bad", (the first season of which is terrifically good), though holes in the breaking bad writing started to show in the second season, and got worse in the third, though, to be fair, they were lucky/good enough to do better during the most recent season, so overall it still maintains its positive impression with me, though occasionally ones mind does recall their network slogan/boast and observe, even while it may matter now and again, it's not quite all the story that it could be.
well, i can't speak for sons of anarchy, (praised by many i know and respect, though i've never seen it), because i never got started on the biker soap opera premise, but i can speak about "the walking dead", and, i'm sorry to say, the words will not be so complimentary.
zombies aren't for everyone. i happened to fall (hard) upon george romero's "dawn of the dead" back in the day, (1978--the year after the original star wars), and was instantly hooked on the non sequitur pairing of gore and (black) comedy that becomes possible with the premise. (if you've never seen romero's skewering of consumer culture by having his protagonists pursued by both zombies and bikers through a shopping mall, you've never seen genius). simon pegg's homage, "shawn of the dead", takes things in a classic english direction, (his folks are just trying to get back to the pub instead of the mall, with just as much panache), and bill murray's cameo turn in reese and wernick's "zombieland" aims for and gets us to the theme park, for yet another hit. i'm sure other fans have other movies to nominate, too, though, as with any other genre, there are as many misses as hits, ("army of darkness" is just stupid), and everything is not for everybody.
into one category or the other will ultimately fall "the walking dead", but i'm guessing if they don't take the time to hire some competent writers, it's far more likely to be a miss than a hit. the trouble, of course, is that zombie fans are so loyal and fanatic, that they'll make the numbers which will make it seem like it's a worthwhile series even when it's really not.
my frustration with the show, beyond its eschewing of the greater comedic, and, hence, entertaining, elements, is that it's so lazily constructed that even a zombie could drive a tractor trailer through the plot holes. i really don't want to be spoiling the show for anyone, but i'm guessing those who will like it will have already watched it, and everybody else is going to appreciate being spared the dull inconvenience, so i'll mention a current example from last night's show:
the protagonists are broken down on a clogged up highway, not having seen any normal humans for hundreds of miles, with one of their kids having wandered off after having been chased away by a zombie. in searching the nearby woods for the missing girl at a distance they reached in less than a couple hours' walk along a stream which provides their bearings, the band separates yet again, (this isn't a complaint about character stupidity, but you know it could be--it's a zombie staple ;-), and a small group encounters a deer which doesn't run away, up to which yet another kid walks, only to be shot in the chest by a hunter's bullet, the hunter being from a pleasant little family farm so close by that the kid's father can jog there carrying his boy in his arms after the accident. so we're talking 4 hours walk from the highway, tops, (they can wander out and back from the highway in daylight, so it can't really be further than that), and at 3 mph, just a little over 10 miles. so if the father has to stay with the boy because his blood type matches (convenient that the farm has a guy who can perform surgery) then why doesn't his partner jog the 10 miles back to the boy's mother, tell everyone there's a safe farm nearby, and then have everyone easily walk the 10 miles back to be all safe and sound by nightfall?
THEN we find out a few minutes later that the farm has gas-powered vehicles (one of which they use to go get surgical supplies A DAY LATER), and horses (one of which they use to go get the boy's mom but nobody else) making all this even more ridiculous. they could zip right out to the highway and pick everyone up within minutes, but NOOOOOO, that would be too sensible.
i do get it. suspension of disbelief is a requirement to begin watching something like this in the first place. but if they're not even going to put in the effort to write it with even a shred of sensibility, why should i bother to put in the effort to watch it?
the answer is, regretfully, that i'm not.