×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Robert Kirkman Has Already Figured Out How ‘The Walking Dead’ Will End

AMC’s “The Walking Dead” is in no danger of ending any time soon — but it’s reassuring to know that creator Robert Kirkman has a plan in mind for the day the blockbuster zombie show finally breathes its last.

“It’s a very popular show, and [the executives at AMC] seem to want it to go for 50 seasons. And it may go for 50 seasons, but there is definitely an end point at some point,” Kirkman told Marc Maron during a visit to the comedian’s WTF podcast. “The idea is that this story that’s longer than it has any business being, but it’s that length and watching those characters evolve over that time that’s gonna make it be this piece, that when it’s all done, you’ll look back on it and be like ‘what the hell, I thought they were just killing zombies. There’s totally an arc here and a thing going on, and I didn’t think the story was about this!'”

Maron queried whether Kirkman would ever consider solving the “zombie problem” altogether, and Kirkman mused, “Maybe. You never know. I do hope that ‘The Walking Dead’ goes on long enough that when it ends, it’s like, ‘good thing we took care of those zombies.'”

While that optimistic outlook may seem at odds with the show’s tone, that’s by design, according to Kirkman: “People talk about how ‘The Walking Dead’s’ very bleak, and if you take a certain cross-section of the story, yeah, it’s horrible. People [are] getting their loved ones eaten and they’re having a horrible time. But I see the story from beginning to end, over many, many years, so I think it’s a very hopeful story about humanity overcoming this insurmountable, apocalyptic situation … it’s just gonna take them a long time to do it.”

In a recent Reddit AMA, Kirkman admitted that the comics still had plenty of stories left to tell. “I do plan on doing at least 300 issues, but if I’m having this much fun then I won’t stop there,” he wrote. “Also, if I suddenly start having a lot LESS fun, I may end it earlier, but I don’t see that happening. I’m in for the long haul, and [artist] Charlie Adlard is too.”

As far as the show is concerned, executive producer Dave Alpert noted at the 2014 Produced By conference that the writers have plotlines mapped out through season 12, if AMC opts to continue it that long. “I happen to love working from source material, specifically because we have a pretty good idea of what season 10 is gonna be,” he said, according to IndieWire. “We know where season 11 and 12 … we have benchmarks and milestones for those seasons if we’re lucky enough to get there.”

And the series is in no danger of catching up to the comics any time soon, Kirkman told Maron.

“I’m in the writers’ room — we always start the season by picking a chunk of the comic to adapt. We’re moving pretty linearly with the comics nowadays. Issue 75 of the comic was coming out when the show started, and the stuff that’s in issue 75 was adapted in the finale of season five. So starting with season six, we’re adapting the comics that were coming out post-the existence of the show,” he pointed out. “We’ve got 144 issues out. We sit down at the beginning of every season and go, ‘we’re gonna adapt from here to here’ of the comic, and then we go, ‘how does Daryl Dixon fit into this’ because he’s not in the comic; ‘how does Carol fit into this’ because she died way earlier in the comic; ‘what do we do with all the important storylines with Andrea’ because she died in the show and is still alive in the comic. … There’s a lot of new stuff that gets put into the show.”

When asked about the possibility of investigating how the zombie outbreak is affecting life in other countries, Kirkman offered, “We may eventually explore that, but to me, it’s about finding water, it’s about building a fence — when you make it bigger, that’s when it gets less interesting to me.”

Still, he wouldn’t rule out the potential for further offshoots, depending on the success of the upcoming companion series “Fear the Walking Dead,” quipping, “We’re doing this ‘Walking Dead’ spinoff and if it does well, I’m sure we’ll do ‘Walking Dead: China’ eventually.”

“The Walking Dead” season six premieres at 9 p.m. Oct. 11 on AMC. “Fear the Walking Dead” season one premieres at 9 p.m. Aug. 23 on AMC.

More TV

  • The Play That Goes Wrong review

    BBC Orders Comedy Series Based on ‘The Play That Goes Wrong’

    The BBC has greenlit “The Goes Wrong Show,” a new series based on Mischief Theatre’s popular “The Play That Goes Wrong” stage production about a troupe that puts on disastrous plays. The stage show has transferred from London’s West End to Broadway for a J.J. Abrams-produced version described by Variety as “a broad, silly and [...]

  • WGA West Logo

    Writers Guild Sends Hollywood Agents Proposed Code of Conduct

    Leaders of the Writers Guild of America have sent Hollywood talent agencies a proposed “Code of Conduct” with tough new restrictions on how they operate as agents for writer clients. The WGA made the disclosure Thursday night in an email to its 12,000 members, a day after announcing that it will hold a March 25 [...]

  • Jussie Smollett court

    Jussie Smollett's Attorneys Say He Was Victim of Police 'Spectacle'

    Jussie Smollett’s legal team issued a defiant statement on Thursday night, saying the “Empire” actor feels betrayed by the justice system and hinting at a political motive for his prosecution. Smollett was arrested early Thursday on a felony charge of filing a false police report. He was released after a court hearing on $100,000 bond, [...]

  • Carra Patterson Sarah Levy Paola Lazaro

    Fox Casts Four Leads in 'Patty's Auto' Pilot

    Fox has announced the casting of four lead characters for its multi-cam comedy pilot “Patty’s Auto,” including the eponymous Patty. Inspired by Patrice Banks’ Girls Auto Clinic, an auto repair shop with all female mechanics, the project centers on Patty, the intimidating owner of Patty’s Auto who will be played by “Straight Outta Compton” alumna [...]

  • Adam Pally Abby Elliott

    Adam Pally, Abby Elliott Join Cast of NBC Comedy Pilot 'Uninsured'

    NBC pilot “Uninsured” has cast four of its series regulars, with Adam Pally (“The Mindy Project,” “The President Show”) and Abby Elliott (“Saturday Night Live,” “Odd Mom Out”) playing the young married couple at the center of the show. Pally will play Dave, who is described as a “natural hype man with a good heart.” Elliott [...]

  • Jussie Smollett Appeared in Documentary on

    Jussie Smollett Recently Hosted Doc on Lynching, Filmmaker Talks 'Coincidence'

    In May 2018, Jussie Smollett appeared as the narrator and correspondent in an episode of the Epix documentary series “America Divided” that explored the subject of hate crimes, specifically lynching, in the state of Tennessee. Now that the “Empire” actor has been charged with filing a false police report and Chicago police are convinced he [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content