The Walking Dead returned to AMC this past Sunday night with an action-packed bang, kicking off its fifth season with an episode that even the biggest haters of the show couldn’t help but love. Our own Pricilla Kumar recapped the premiere here on iHorror earlier in the week, so check that out if you haven’t yet.
You may have noticed that the Season 5 premiere was directed by makeup effects artist Greg Nicotero, who recently came on board as the executive producer of the show. Nicotero, who started his career on the set of George Romero’s Day of the Dead, has been known to work references to Romero’s work into the episodes he directs, which are usually in the form of walkers made to look like iconic Romero zombies.
Though there were no cameo walkers in this past Sunday night’s episode, Nicotero revealed on the recent episode of the Walker Stalkers Podcast that he did pay tribute to Romero and his mentor Tom Savini in the premiere. The tribute came in the form of a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it reference to Creepshow, which Romero of course directed.
“There were no tribute walkers, but I did do a little homage in there,” said Nicotero. “And you see it when Rick and the gang go running towards the train car to let the crazy tattoo guy out. When Glenn says, ‘You’ve got to help those people.’ There’s a bunch of crates around Terminus. One of the crates in the foreground says ‘Arctic Expedition Horlicks University, Attn: Julia Carpenter,’ which was the crate from Creepshow. That was the text written on the crate from Creepshow.”
Thanks to ComicBook.com for spotting the homage, and providing the above screenshot!