On the season premiere of Ride with Norman Reedus, the actor travelled the North Island of New Zealand. While there, he explored the history of the native Māori people along side Thanos himself, Josh Brolin. Since the star was already in the beautiful country, the star heads down to the South Island where he’s joined by Dylan McDermott to cruise the breath-taking highways.
The episode develops the theme of nature and begins with how locals are trying to live in balance with the environment. Before departing the North Island, the pair meet up with chef, Monique Fiso, who helps them find indigenous ingredients. If Reedus ever finds himself in a post-apocalyptic, zombie infested New Zealand, the foraging techniques he learns would come in handy. He doesn’t eat anything too exotic though as they only collect herbs and wild vegetables.
Later we witness the power and destructive side of nature. Both McDermott and Reedus experience severe motion sickness during the ferry ride to the South Island and the scenes are shot with a more playful tone. It’s amusing to see a less glamorous and more vulnerable side of these actors to show they are still people. The elements also hamper parts of their trip and there are several references to the devastating earthquakes the country has endured in the past but it demonstrates the Kiwis strong spirit to persevere after the tragedies.
There is a beautiful side to nature as well and we’re reminded of it every time we see the duo ride between destinations. There are picturesque views and the laid-back vibe is much different to its northern counterpart. They also visit sculptor, Phil Price, whose kinetic sculptures harness the wind to cause them to move in mesmerizing ways. Speaking of the wind, Reedus and his guest also go blow carting on the beach and it’s crazy the high speeds they achieve in the weird combination of wind surfing and go karting. These off the beaten path stops highlight the interesting parts of the local culture.
Although, Ride with Norman Reedus, showcases some of the more touristy things as well. New Zealand is known for its large sheep population so the guys head to a merino wool farm. It’s one of the less interesting detours since they don’t do much hands-on stuff. It would have been cool watching them shear the sheep but either they didn’t want to get their hands dirty or the farmer didn’t trust them with such valuable wool at stake.
The second episode from the fifth season effectively creates a nice nature motif as Reedus and McDermott visit a land that feels and literally is a world away.
Ride with Norman Reedus airs Sunday nights on AMC.
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