WARNING: We're about to discuss the most shocking moments (and deaths!) from Sunday's season six premiere of The Walking Dead. If you do not wish to be spoiled, leave now!
As promised, Sunday's 90-minute premiere of The Walking Dead was one of the most captivating and adrenaline-pumping episodes of television that we've ever seen!
Now that you've witnessed all the twists and turns, ETonline has the exclusive scoop from executive producer Gale Anne Hurd about the huge herd of walkers headed straight to Alexandria, and how the episode paid special homage to the comics.
Plus, we caught up with actor Ethan Embry to talk about his character's tense run-in with Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and why that bloody and gruesome death was a dream come true to portray.
Black and White and Red All Over: In Sunday's time-jumping premiere, viewers were treated to a visually compelling storytelling tool that has never been used before on the heart-pounding drama: Flashback scenes were depicted in black and white, while the present-day Alexandria action was presented in color.
Hurd revealed that this cinematic choice was not a part of the original plan for the premiere. "It was interesting because it was something that we decided [to do] after we saw the first cut," the showrunner explained. "We looked at it and we said that since the timeline is going back and forth, it was confusing as to which one was which."
"Then we thought that given that the comic book is in black and white, it's actually fitting," she continued, "if we're going to choose something -- rather than going for something that's saturated, or was the way that a lot of people deal with flashbacks or flashforwards, -- we decided to treat it in keeping with The Walking Dead universe and went with black and white."
Delighted to be Dead: Actor Ethan Embry has been a longtime fan of AMC's undead drama, so when he learned that he would be playing Carter, a Alexandria citizen who was both introduced and brutally killed in the season premiere, he hit the guest star jackpot.
"It's the only way I would want to go. It's like Boom! Zombie eats my face." Embry said of Carter's unexpected demise by a tree walker. "To me, it's like everything I could imagine I would want if I was invited onto the show -- and I got to do it all in one episode."
The Can't Hardly Wait actor revealed that the day he filmed his bloody death scene was a highlight of his career. "I'm laying in the forest and blood is gushing everywhere," he recalled.
"It's like in my eyes, it's going down my throat -- there's so much blood! And then I have Andy on top of me, and he's slipping in the blood on my face, and I'm screaming bloody murder. It was the coolest day that any one could ever had."
Despite his unbridled enthusiasm, Embry did confess that he has one Walking Dead regret: "The only thing I'm bummed about is I wish I could've killed one," he shared. "Other than that, I got to be a part of everything that makes the show great."
Rick Grimes: Maniacal Murderer or Fearless Leader? Embry revealed that his character was used as a tool to show just how far Rick has changed since the first season. "I wanted to be the voice of the audience where I've been watching Rick slightly lose himself and wondering how far he's going to go, and if he's going to cross the line, and just completely lose his mind," he said.
"There's that run-in that [Rick and Carter] have earlier in the episode where I almost meet my maker at his hands, but he shows me grace. He shows me mercy," Embry explained.
"In a way, him killing me -- yeah he's doing it to save himself, and his pack, because I'm ruining this whole plan, my screaming is calling them away from the plan -- but it's also like he's euthanizing me," Embry said. "He's putting me out of my misery and saving me from eternal damnation."
But for those of you who worry that Rick received a sense of glee from killing Carter, Hurd stressed that it was all just business as usual. "I think that at this point, it's all part of the job," she said of Rick's decision to kill Carter.
"I don't think he ever feels a sense of triumph to kill," she said. "Maybe there's a sense of relief, but I don’t think there is ever any kind of joy or glee in doing so."
What's Next: We ended Sunday's spine-chilling premiere with thousands upon thousands of walkers stumbling towards a unknown sound, which in turn, is luring them straight to Alexandria.
So what can fans expect for the sure-to-be shocking second episode of the season? "It's all hands on deck," Hurd spilled of the looming army of walkers. "In Alexandria, you still have people who are in denial about the risks that they face as you would anywhere."
Hurd confessed that next week, it's time to see if the naïve people of Alexandria have what it takes to step up to the zombie plate.
"There are people who want to bury their heads in the sand and believe that if you don’t acknowledge that evil exists maybe you can banish it," she said. "[But] for everyone who has been watching The Walking Dead for five seasons, we all know better."
The Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on AMC.
What did you think of the action-packed 90-minute premiere? Do you think that Carter deserved to die? What do you want to see this season on The Walking Dead? Share your thoughts with @LeanneAguilera on Twitter!