8 things we learned about Norman Reedus from his AMC motorcycle show

The season 1 finale of Ride with Norman Reedus airs Sunday at 10 p.m.
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Ride with Norman Reedus
Photograph by Mark Schafer/AMC

On The Walking Dead, Daryl Dixon’s motorcycle is almost as iconic as his trademark crossbow. Norman Reedus, the actor that plays Dixon, is also a bike fanatic, so we weren’t surprised when AMC announced last fall that Reedus would star in his own motorcycle-centered reality show, Ride with Norman Reedus, in which he visits bike shops, scouts the local flavor (porta potty races in Asheville, crawfish catching in Louisiana), and takes in the views along scenic paths in California, Texas, the Smoky Mountains, and more. This Sunday, in the season 1 finale, Reedus rides though the Florida Keys alongside Easy Rider star Peter Fonda. Here’s what the series has taught us about the actor so far:

1. He could narrate his own nature documentary.
In stark contrast to Daryl’s gruff Southern drawl, Reedus’s voice-overs throughout each episode are crisp and often poetic. Once TWD is done, Reedus could certainly make a career out of narrating audiobooks—or podcasts, as he shows off in episode 1.

2. Black is the only color in his wardrobe.
At least when it comes to everything he wears on the show, though he does sport a fun zombie t-shirt in the Blue Ridge Parkway episode.

Ride with Norman Reedus
Photograph by Mark Schafer/AMC

3. He’s still a shutterbug.
In 2013, Reedus released a book of photography, and it’s clear from the show that he loves taking pictures. Photographs—selfies, portraits of the people he meets, snapshots of things he finds along the way—are spliced in throughout each episode, and Reedus frequently has a camera around his neck or phone in hand.

4. He started riding bikes at just 13.
The first bike he ever rode was a buddy’s Yamaha YZ80—and it promptly landed him in the emergency room after he flipped doing a wheelie on a hill. As soon as he was released, he explains at the beginning of the Blue Ridge episode, he went back to the hill, only to end up in the hospital again a half-hour later.

Ride with Norman Reedus
Reedus (center) and Brent Hinds (right) race crawfish in Louisiana.

Photograph by Mark Schafer/AMC

5. He met Mastodon guitarist Brent Hinds backstage at a show in Atlanta.
Hinds was Reedus’s travel buddy during the Louisiana episode, in which they got matching tattoos in memory of Motörhead frontman Lemmy.

6. Fans still recognize him from The Boondock Saints.
Before his was Daryl, Reedus starred as Murphy MacManus in the 1999 cult film. In Texas, a fan stops him to show off his “Aequitas” tattoo. In California, a motorcycle shop employee tells Reedus that his brother was such a huge fan that a DVD of the film was found in his car after a fatal accident.

7. He owes his acting career to pizza place.
“It’s a long story, but let’s just say I was in the right place at the right time, and the rest is history,” he says as he passes the former home of Damiano Mr. Pizza in the California episode. (That long story, which Reedus has explained on both Inside the Actors Studio and The Tonight Show: he went to a party in Hollywood Hills, got drunk, started yelling at people, and was subsequently asked to be in a play by some folks who later took him out to Damiano’s.)

8. The answer is “boxers.”
At least, that’s what he was sporting when he decided to drop his pants while dirt-biking in Death Valley.

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