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Photo: Nicola Dove/AMC

Television

‘Ride with Norman Reedus’ season 5 episode 1 review: Pop culture worlds collide

Josh Brolin guests on the season 5 premiere of Ride with Norman Reedus.

Ride with Norman Reedus is the type of viewing that would be welcomed right now. With most of us staying close to home, travel shows are our best way to explore some place exotic. The return of The Walking Dead star fronted reality series tonight gave us a chance to visit across the world to the island nation of New Zealand.

As usual, Reedus is joined by a companion and in the season five premiere, it is fellow actor Josh Brolin. The pair have great chemistry, considering the episode is the first time they’ve met. The guys’ vibing together and their openness to try everything that comes their way makes for fun television. The running gag of who’s the bigger star is particularly entertaining considering Brolin played the villain in the top grossing film of all time. However, there is one person’s name in the title so it would be edited the way it is.

New Zealand has a rich history and it is nice the premiere’s focus is on the indigenous Māori people. We receive a glimpse of their influence on the island country and an introductory history into the first settlement and how the people were treated. It’s always fascinating to learn more about a different culture. We also meet the Tribal Nations Motorcycle Club and their community efforts to bring awareness to the native people.

ride with norman reedus 5.1.2
Photo: Nicola Dove/AMC

The show can’t be called Ride with Norman Reedus without involving some sweet modes of transportation. In addition to joyriding with the Tribal Nations, the host goes jet skiing to provide some excellent views of the Auckland Harbor. For all the adrenaline junkies, Reedus and Brolin attend the Leadfoot Festival, which is a unique motorsports event. Both ride shotgun in a thrilling run on a drifting race course.

The most engaging segments of the episode is when we see such different sides of Norman and Josh while they do unexpected things. It’s a joy to watch these two with such pop culture credibility goofing around the Shire (You better believe they went to Hobbiton). Although it has a little bit of the obnoxious American tourist to it, what other time does The Walking Dead, the MCU, and The Lord of the Rings all coincide.

The season premiere is a fun escape to a distant land when most of us are homebound. It contains a little bit of history and a lot of Reedus and Brolin hanging in the land of Kiwis.

Ride with Norman Reedus airs Sunday nights on AMC.

ride with norman reedus 5.1
Ride with Norman Reedus S 5 E 1 Review
The season premiere is a fun escape to a distant land when most of us are homebound. It contains a little bit of history and a lot of Reedus and Brolin hanging in the land of Kiwis.
Reader Rating0 Votes
0
The Reedus/Brolin dynamic.
Learning about the indigenous Māori people.
Reedus and Brolin's antics border the obnoxious American tourist stereotype at times.
7.5
Good

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