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Welcome to Independence, a place where people are running from their past and no one is who they seem. The pilot episode of Walker: Independence did an amazing job of introducing each character and leaving the audience wanting more. Told from the viewpoint of its central character, each one is met through the eyes of… 

Abigail Walker 

Abby promo

Even before she lost everything, Abby was a strong presence. But when everything is violently stripped away from her, she shows her true mettle. Her ability to maintain her composure in a new place is extraordinary. It’s a thankless task being the strong, female protagonist. Often times, writers confuse anger with strength, and though Abby is angry for good reason, Kat magnificently tempers this with kindness and pain. The show is through her eyes and it does a good job of making the audience feel her emotions. The piano strings audibly break as her world shatters. Kate’s introduction of the town feels overwhelming. The literal run in with Hoyt. That had to hurt as he hit her injured shoulder; no wonder she responded testily. The shock of Tom Davidson taking her husband’s job. Even the respite Kai’s meal offered. Every step, the audience is included in Abby’s inner world. And the powerful moment where the founder of the proud Walker family take the name is very evocative. But as in this moment, when things get too serious, in comes … 

Hoyt Rawlins 


From the very first scene, we know that Hoyt is a man who laughs in the face of danger (and is hot doing it.) But throughout the episode, it is revealed he is that and more. He cares. He cares that Lucia’s family is having trouble. He cares that Abby’s husband was killed. The lovable rogue is a beloved archetype, and Matt Barr breathes life into this intriguing character brilliantly. His personality is a wonderful counterpoint to that of …


1.01 Calian

The fact that Abigail didn’t faint in the face of his beauty is proof alone she is made of sterner stuff. Calian has empathy and heart, but is not naïve. He understands the world of the western settler that intrigues him so and treads carefully, but he feels the pull. The way he walks between the worlds is relatable for so many, including the actor who plays him. Calian is also a person who cares. His speaking a blessing over Liam Collins’ grave was poignant and beautiful. His empathy for Abby’s loss is palpable, and his willingness to join her quest is understandable based off of that. Another one on a hidden quest is …


1.01 Katie

Kate is a larger than life personality that is more than she seems. Kate sees everything and is quickly impressed and curious about Abby. Katie Findlay has an undeniable charisma and the vibrant wardrobe to add to her essence and charm. The reveal that she is a Pinkerton at the end of the episode adds depth to an already interesting character and sets up further conflict down the road, perhaps with …



Another person who sees all that goes on in the town (or tries to) is Deputy Augustus. He’s an enigmatic fellow who hides behind a smile, even when he’s threatening, so one never knows what he’s thinking. Yet, he is referred to by the honorable Calian as a good man, so there must be good behind that always affable exterior. Philemon Chambers is phenomenal as the deputy who was once again passed over for a white man … 

Tom Davidson 


There sure is a growing amount of evidence that the new sheriff is the villain of this piece. Abby seems quite certain, and Tom exudes that smarmy confidence of a man that is up to no good with no one to stop them. However, there is an air that Greg Hovanessian adds that makes some wonder, while not necessarily a good person, if he’s the villain he is painted. However, he’s definitely not upright for he tries to take advantage of… 


1.01 Kai

Food is typically considered a source of comfort. So Kai being the one to give Abby the first onscreen meal, sets him up as the comfort character. And yet, as he describes his past and his need for a new future, he somehow seems haunted. Lawrence Kao nails the simultaneous emotions of hope and sadness. And the way he looks at Kate makes one wonder where that relationship is going. 

And that is one of the greatest strengths of Walker: Independence - the interesting people. One can’t wait to learn more about everyone and how they interact with everyone else. This episode showed just enough of each character to whet the audience’s appetite for more. 

It must also be said that this show is incredibly beautiful. The cinematography is both evocative and breathtaking. It’s a feast for the eyes and ears. The soundtrack also adding to the overall wonderful experience of WIndy. 

Author’s Note: I was able to watch a version of the Pilot at the ATX Film Festival in June. There are subtle differences, with this cut being better with pacing. 

4.95 stars out of 5. 

What did you think?  Please share your thoughts on the episode below!

Photos Courtesy of The CW

Read more Walker and Walker:Independence reviews, plus find news on the cast and show on The WFB's Walker and Walker: Independence Pages

Don't Miss Cat's Supernatural Photo Stories and other Walker Reviews on her Writer's Page!