Credit: Gene Page/AMC Photo: Michonne Stands Close to a Walker on The Walking Dead Season 3, Episode 7

The Walking Dead Season 4 sounds better and better every time we get scarier news for the survivors. Are we sickos? Do we need to join Carl in therapy?

Season 4 — which starts Sunday, October 13 on AMC — is entering all sorts of new danger zones. The zombies are getting smarter, the people are getting tougher, and there's more terror and death. Heck, even Carol is now teaching children how to handle knives. That's where we're at.

Executive producer David Alpert just had a nice Q&A with AMCtv, and they asked about the new season's theme. If Season 3 was about the human threat, AMC asked, what's Season 4 about?

"What we really have here in Season 4 is we dangle the carrot that civilization can be rebuilt… The notion that there’s civilization and the notion that there’s the possibility of there being laws and a sense of normalcy," David said. "I think we’re going to see an evolution in the walkers — there’s a whole bunch of new walkers — and we’ll see an evolution of the threat of human-on-human. Dangling the possibility of civilization will make people much more desperate and willing to do things that would have previously been unthinkable."

What would previously be unthinkable? Killing other people to protect their own? Killing some of their own to protect the larger group? How are you interpreting that?

In just-as-bad news, David talked about the past deaths on the show, saying it was particularly hard to kill Shane in Season 2. On that note, "In the screening room here in production, there’s a wall that says 'Our Grateful Dead,' and it’s got pictures of all the characters who’ve been killed off over the seasons. It’s kind of insane: One, it’s kind of touching, and, two, we’ve killed a lot of people on this show. [Laughs] It’s hard to say which one was the toughest."

When AMC asked if they were planning to add characters to that wall in Season 4. David answered, "Oh, there’s going to be a whole bunch of people added to the wall." Great?

We know at least 12 Prison/Woodbury people will die pretty early in the season, since Hershel mentions "we just lost 12 of our own" in the Season 4 extended trailer. He said two of those losses were "in cold blood." We’re guessing most or maybe even all of those people will be newbies from Woodbury.

Comic book writer/executive producer Robert Kirkman told Entertainment Weekly Season 4 would not have the same number of main character deaths as Season 3. “We will not get rid of four major characters in Season 4,” Kirkman said. (T-Dog, Lori, Merle, and Andrea are the four from Season 3.) “Because we have to keep things off balance. It has to be different every season. Maybe we’ll kill two, maybe we’ll kill 10. Who knows? But it will be different.”

No word on the supporting characters, though. Last season we lost Milton, Oscar, and Axel, to name a few, plus a bunch of Woodbury people and other more minor characters. So just expect lots of desperation, death, and the unthinkable. Bring it on!

Source: AMCtv