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'The Walking Dead' teases shaky merger with the Commonwealth in trailer for final season return

Part 2 of The Walking Dead's final season will premiere on AMC Sunday, Feb. 20.

By Josh Weiss
The Walking Dead Final Season YT

It looks as though Alexandria is about to be absorbed by the Commonwealth in the official trailer for the second part of The Walking Dead's eleventh and final season (broken up into three separate chunks totaling 24 episodes).

Despite the opportunity to join an idyllic and thriving community akin to the world before the walker outbreak, our heroes simply can't let go of the past. You know how it goes: one minute Carol (Melissa McBride) is baking a fresh tray of cookies and the next, she's in full beast mode. Even Eugene (Josh McDermitt), usually so docile and sheepish, is coming into his own and ready to embrace his inner badass when Stephanie (Chelle Ramos) goes missing. 

"Darkness is heavy," Ezekiel (Khary Payton) declares in voiceover. "Some of us carry it more than others." Are these characters even capable of adjusting to "normal" life anymore or are they too far down the post-apocalyptic rabbit hole? Can they be seamlessly integrated into the echelons of the Commonwealth or reject it like a body attacking a newly-transplanted organ?

There is plenty to unpack in the trailer below:

Sure, a life similar to before sounds nice until you realize it comes with all the old prejudices, as Magna (Nadia Hilker) so astutely points out. For all its upsides, the Commonwealth (led by Laila Robins' Pamela Milton) seems to be hiding some pretty dark secrets, particularly when it comes to red-armored head of security, Mercer (Michael James Shaw).

And what about the Reapers? Obviously, it's confirmed that Daryl (Norman Reedus), Maggie (Lauren Cohan), and Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) make it through the battle at Meridian, but is Mr. Dixon able to broker an alliance with his old flame, Leah (Lynn Collins)?

With all of these human squabbles going on, we almost forgot that little detail of the undead horde that continues to roam the planet and devour anything with a heartbeat. The walkers are far from gone, and there'll be plenty more head-stabbing before the show is through. Something tells us the Commonwealth might befall the same fate as Woodbury. After all, both had a governor in charge.

"11B is going to have a pretty different vibe from 11A, which is not unusual for us in a season," showrunner and executive producer Angela Kang teased during an interview with Entertainment Weekly back in October. "We tend to kind of switch up some variables in every block. We'll start to open up our world a little bit more and meet some more people and see what's going on for everybody. And there's going to be a really fun thriller vibe to the B block that we've been enjoying writing."

Part 2 of The Walking Dead's final season premieres on AMC Sunday, Feb. 20 at 9 p.m. EST. AMC+ subscribers will be able to stream new episodes a week ahead of their network debut. A premiere date for the third block of eight episodes has yet to be announced.

Season 11 will spin out into a brand-new series centered around Daryl and Carol and their various undead adventures on the road.