It takes 5 seasons and finally in Episode 9 of the fifth, a new corporeal feature of the post-apocalyptic landscape is depicted in AMC’s The Walking Dead. Up to this point, the supernatural arrested decay of the animated dead has meant years of past and still no skeletons populate the American landscape.

The choice to introduce the skeleton at this point is no coincidence – the anonymous skeleton in the forest appearances to foreshadow the death of one of the lead characters: Tyrees is afforded inhumation in a starkly contrasting fashion within a rural idyll.

Maybe some expert will correct me, but while half-rotten, half-eaten bodies, burnt cadavers and body-parts have been a common feature of the show, this is the first skeleton with the flesh picked clean of the bones to appear unburied and abandoned. As such, it is an example of how the final bare display of bones reveals mortality in its final form and in this context operates as a testimony to the final break-down of civilization as the walking dead roam, crawl, bite and gnaw…