One of the most iconic weapons of The Walking Dead is Rick’s red-handled machete. (Next to Negan’s barbed wire-wrapped baseball bat Lucille, that is.) The machete was notably used by Rick Grimes to kill Gareth, the leader of Terminus, and the clan of cannibals that the gang went up against in Seasons 4 and 5. Gareth was an extremely popular villain, having been the primary antagonist of season 4 and one of two main antagonists of season 5. After an attack on Terminus, his sanctuary for survivors of the apocalypse, Gareth quickly devolved from a good man into a foe to be reckoned with. Across his tenure as villain-in-residence, Gareth caused enough trouble for Rick and his group of survivors to last a lifetime. In an iconic scene from season 5, Rick stabbed Gareth to death with a read-handled machete.
Now, AMC has released The Walking Dead Red Machete, a web series that seeks to show the origins of the weapon with which Rick killed Gareth. The series is set to contain five episodes. These episodes will trace the machete’s history, showing its path from the beginning of the apocalypse to the time Rick Grimes gets his hands on it.
Episode one, already released, begins in a hardware store. As a young man uses the machete to defend himself from a roving group of walkers, one gets the feeling right away that the stakes are high. Rick and his group not being the main focus of this series does nothing to lessen the tension of these episodes. Even though the episode is a short one, coming in at about two and a half minutes, the stakes are high within the first moments of the opening shot, and from there they only grow higher.
The episodes of Red Machete will be released on AMC’s website and on YouTube. Episode one was uploaded on October 22, 2017 and can be viewed above, as well as on AMC’s website, here.