This arrives with great credentials - Frank Darabont and Gale Anne Hurd at the helm, a top-notch effects team, and some solid acting talent - and kicks off with a terrific opening episode, with buckets of shocking gore and violence, but with a degree of an emotional core that is unusual in this genre. The short, six episode opening season packs in a lot of action, and fine production values lift it above average: the washed-out colours of the abandoned cities are spookily effective.
On the downside, there are some silly flaws - the main character wakes up in hospital after (presumably) weeks in a coma, yet is in perfect physical shape with pumped chest and arm muscles...what, has he being doing weights whilst unconscious? The story (based on a comic book) also relies far too much on coincidence - the main character is looking for his wife, and in the middle of an abandoned city he bumps into a very small band of survivors, one of whom is a woman looking for her sister...what are the chances that the missing sister and missing wife jsut happen to have met up and are in another band of survivors? I know, I know, we're in zombie territory here, so a certain suspension of disbelief is obviously required, but come on!
Definitely worth a look, and a cut above most recent TV fare if you can stomach the extreme violence and accept the occasional silliness.