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World Expanding with the Walking Dead Novels

Both The Walking Dead television show and the comic book series are incredibly popular, sharing similarities but so different in story and character arc that they constitute separate universes. Less well known (relatively) is the series of novels, written initially by Robert Kirkman with Jay Bonansinga, and later taken over by Bonansinga as the sole writer. These novels, set in the comic universe, explore the rise of the Governor in more depth, and then follow events in Woodbury after he is gone. What ways do the novels expand the world of the comics, in terms of character and plot development, and how does the post-governor Woodbury relate to other types of societies seen in the series?


    The Decline of The Walking Dead Television Series

    With the swing of a bat, the Walking Dead was easily the most popular show on television. However, with increasingly more characters to adapt into the story, the loss of fan favorite characters, and rehashing of similar story lines, how much longer can the show continue to receive this unprecedented popularity? Within this season, the shows ratings have already drastically declined from the season premiere. Why has the show lost its fervor? Can the directors/writers take steps to salvage the series, or will it be too little too late?

    • The show should have taken a more 'Game of Thrones' approach to the plot. 'Game of Thrones' established very early in its airing that main characters and fan favorites are not immune to death. If the fan-base is more story-driven, the show is easier to steer from a writing standpoint. – MikeySheff 5 years ago
    • The decline of ratings for the Walking Dead can also be attributed to the complex storyline. Especially this current season has a lot of parallel plots, that all develop very slowly and keep the audiences waiting for anything to happen that could bring the plot really forward. Even though it makes sense to establish characters like Negan as the evil villain and show the audience what he is really capable of doing, it drags on and on. Additionally a lot of fans read ahead in the comic series and stir up discussions online, which makes it difficult to keep up a neutral stand on the show. The killing of popular characters then takes another toll on the audience. The early exploring/surviving mentality, where the group tried to built on something has disappeared, along with beloved characters. This atmosphere that was created in earlier seasons could be one thing to bring back the show to its original success. – lajungbl 5 years ago

    The Walking Dead: A Decline in Story Telling

    This topic would explore why The Walking Dead became so successful as both a comic book series and a television series, and how its story has suffered such a drastic decline in actual plot development since the Prison Arc. A major cause that would require further research might be the fact that the story has no end because the virus overtaking the world cannot end, and thus, the horde of zombies will never die; so the question to ask is, can a story continue to be interesting if the main conflict cannot be resolved? Of course you have an onslaught of new villains every few seasons, but by and far they are not different characters by any means.

    • Interesting topic, I too feel that the story telling has seriously declined. It would be interesting to compare some of the feature length films like those by Romero to this TV zombie series. For me it is a never-ending doomsday scenario that allows its viewers to live out this escapist survival fantasy from one week to the next, problematic overall. – jonj724 5 years ago

    Decoding Social Commentary in The Walking Dead

    Some weeks ago, there was an episode of the Walking Dead that appeared to serve as a commentary on real world events. It was a story of one group of people, reduced to an almost primitive cult-like state, driven to attack another segment of society that endeavored to hold on to current notions of civilized existence. This group that faced attack was comprised of survivors living in a kind of gated community somewhat untouched by the horrific realities of the outside world.

    This one episode could easily be seen as a commentary on our fears of the other, about the encroachment of medieval fundamentalism and our relationship to modernity (as a sometimes violent counterforce). The attackers in this episode had a religious zeal for delivering death as way of providing an answer for the "civilians" ills. Those that survived the onslaught wielded modern weaponry (in contrast to the attackers who were armed only with sharp or blunt instruments, painted faces and madness). Those who lived within the city limits (as it were) and imagined a safe life of homemaking simplicity were cut down while the people trained in the art of killing (even those who first tried to use non-lethal methods) survived.

    Obviously, the tradition for the Zombie film as a symbolic experience was set by Romero with Night of The Living Dead (Vietnam) and his follow-up Dawn of THe Dead (consumerism). With The Walking Dead we appear to be in The Age of Terrorism.

    The Monster is alive and well, and, as always, is us.