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Submitted by on July 25, 2017 – 9:37 amNo Comment

4567uio0987y6789While we all joke that it is the never-ending story of the zombie apocalypse, are Image Comics and AMC’s versions of The Walking Dead both heading past their sell-by date? It has been a rough week for the show about humanity and hungry brain-munchers, and the bad news just keeps on coming. First Game of Thrones toppled TWD as the most-watched show on cable TV, then creator #RobertKirkman admitted that he has started packing his bags for the franchise’s swansong.

Like some twisted version of one of Negan’s games, Kirkman has walloped fans with a wire-wrapped baseball bat to the skull. It has been a good run, but pick your decomposing jaw off the floor, because it sounds like #TheWalkingDead really is coming to an end — well, at least in comic book form anyway.

Dead And Buried

The news of an endgame was revealed at Kirkman’s star-studded panel during San Diego Comic-Con. The zombie maestro unveiled his bold plans to to wrap up the #comicbook, which he has been writing since 2003, and leave a zombie-shaped hole in the landscape of the horror genre. Speaking to a packed hall of walker lovers, the series creator said we are closer to the end than we might think:

“I think about two or three years ago, I had a pretty good idea for a definitive ending. I have known that since then and been working towards that, so I know exactly where I’m going and what’s gonna happen when I get there.”

He admits that what started off as a fairly humble little acorn has grown into a mighty oak tree, which must’ve been helped by the past seven seasons of AMC’s lauded show:

“When I first started Walking Dead, I knew about the prison story line. So, I knew that they would eventually live in a prison, I knew they would eventually encounter the Governor, I knew there’d be some stuff that happens and I was working towards that. By the time I was at issue 6, I thought of stuff past that, so that’s kind of how it worked. I had this 50 or 60 issue chunk of story and every issue I wrote, it just kept moving, so I always had this big road map ahead of me.”

While the ending is still top secret — and not even written down — Kirkman definitely knows where he wants his bloodthirsty baby to head:

“There was an ending I had in mind that I was thinking, ‘Oh, this would be kind of a cool ending.’ I got to a point where it should’ve happened and I was like, ‘I’m not done yet.’ And this was before the show. It got to a point where I would’ve had to start building to it and I was like, ‘Nah.’ So, I just threw that out and then I just kept going because I had all kinds of cool stuff I wanted to do.”

‘Dead’ Serious

While there is no news on when/how Kirkman plans on burying The Walking Dead, we are definitely staring down the barrel of a loaded shotgun. While it may seem like the end of the world (again) for fans of the comics and AMC’s show, it may not be as bad as you first think for the TV version. Even if Kirkman stopped writing stories tomorrow, there is more than enough material to draw out another eight seasons of the show — if not longer — and there is a running joke that Andrew Lincoln will still be playing Rick Grimes in Season 20. Elsewhere, with a continuing run of solid ratings, showrunners joke that The Walking Dead may never come to an end.

Also, with Scott Gimple’s show differing so vastly from the comic books, who is to say that the show couldn’t outlive its paperback counterpart? That being said, with the comics already having major villains like the Governor, Negan, and Alpha, you can’t help but wonder where The Walking Dead can go next. There have been some major moments on both the page and our TV screens, but it is impossible to continue outdoing yourself. As we drag out limbs toward some sort of final endgame, Kirkman reveals that even he is struggling to keep the blood flowing:

“It’s actually more difficult to write The Walking Dead than its ever been because we’ve done a lot of stuff. To be able to top yourself, and keep things fresh, and keep things interesting… It gets harder and harder and harder as you go. Knowing what the end game is and working towards that, makes it a little bit easier.”

Currently standing at 169 issues, The Walking Dead is still one of the most popular comic books out there, and with the recent major death of a certain long-standing character, Kirkman has shown that he can still shock us some 14 years later. Admittedly, nothing lasts forever, but is it right for TWD to start shuffling off toward the graveyard already?

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