AMC isn’t one to look a rotting gift horse like The Walking Dead in the mouth, extending its highest-rated series so long as creator Robert Kirkman provides comic source material. That relationship doesn’t necessarily extend both ways, however, as Kirkman acknowledges AMC has zero input or foreknowledge of any potential story shakeups.
The Walking Dead tried to have its cake and eat it by Sunday’s Season 7 premiere cashing out not one, but two series regulars; one in line with the comic, one intended to throw us off. Now, creator Robert Kirkman explains why AMC’s Walking Dead opted to follow the comic so closely, noting that too much story was lost otherwise.
There’s been a bit of back-and-forth surrounding Negan’s victims from last night’s Walking Dead premiere, as some suggested they’d yet to choose the big death before this summer, while cast have claimed to know even longer. Now that the truth is finally splattered out in the open, showrunner Scott M. Gimple and creator Robert Kirkman say the doomed pair was chosen years in advance.
Walking Dead companion series Fear The Walking Dead wrapped up its second season with a few hints of the world leaning farther into the zombie apocalypse, but fans will always wonder if the two series would ever cross over. Robert Kirkman even offered a tantalizing hint at New York Comic-Con, suggesting a Fear-ful origin for one of the comics’ current villains.
Even as Walking Dead comic fans knew it to be coming, AMC viewers may have been taken back by the Season 7 trailer appearance of “King” Ezekiel and his pet tiger Shiva. Season 7 brought the creature to life with animatronics and CGI, while creator Robert Kirkman admits he wrote the tiger in to see how a TV series might handle it.
Whether or not The Walking Dead turns into a 50-year franchise like Star Trek, the AMC series will inevitably either conclude before, or extend beyond Robert Kirkman’s comic source material. Whenever we get to that point, Kirkman at least confirms the two mediums will craft different endings, so as not to spoil one another.
The Walking Dead is not always beholden to cliffhanger endings, closing out Seasons 1, 3 and 5 on relatively straight-forward beats, but Season 6 seemed overwhelmingly to sour fans on any cruel tease. However Season 7 picks up to answer that bloody twist, Robert Kirkman confirms they won’t try anything like that for the 2017 finale.
Robert Kirkman began The Walking Dead under curiosity of life in the zombie apocalypse after most movies roll credits, but horror icon John Carpenter isn’t impressed with the creator cribbing from George Romero. The Thing and Halloween director believes The Walking Dead has been “milking” its zombie forefathers, and isn’t worth our time
A little friendly rivalry between TV juggernauts never hurt, and we’ve certainly seen The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones tossing a bit of healthy shade back and forth. Dead creator Robert Kirkman may have escalated the conflict, however, expressing his disappointment in Thrones author George R.R. Margin giving up book spoilers, for which the zombie mogul now offers a clever mea culpa.
Apart from an army of undead and a few fake-out deaths, The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones have little in common beyond vast source material fans are eager to see adapted. That said, Game of Thrones ran out of road early enough that author George R.R. Martin gifted a few unpublished spoilers to HBO, something Dead creator Robert Kirkman says he would never do for AMC.