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Robert Kirkman addresses complaint that Walking Dead comics merely recycle stories

Contributed by
Jan 4, 2019

For over 15 years, Robert Kirkman has been penning Walking Dead stories for Image Comics, but his creations are not as universally-loved as they once were.

In a letter to Kirkman (published in Issue #187), reader "Danny the Mc" voices a concern that the comics merely recycle stories and, sometimes, barely contain any zombie action. He went on to describe the scene of Lizzie killing Mika in Season 4 of the AMC TV adaptation, which he felt made a better case for the property's continuity than the comics. 

"First... that story you mention from the show is from the comics," Kirkman wrote in his response. "That happened in the comic, just in a slightly different way. So it's kind of odd to use that as a way of saying the show is better than the comic."

The Walking Dead Issue 187 Robert Kirkman

Credit: Image Comics

The Walking Dead Issue 187 Letters Page Robert Kirkman

Credit: Image Comics

Kirkman went on to address the complaint about reusing stories over and over again:

"I've heard the 'Oh, man... TWD just recycles the same story over and over again,' complaint many times," the writer continued. "And if you're not into the book anymore, that's fine, stop. I completely understand. Some people aren't up for the long haul ... But 'meeting new groups and getting into conflicts with them' is... every... continuing story. It's every TV show. New enemies, new antagonists, new conflicts... and each of those conflicts are different in some way... and result in characters learning new things and growing in new ways. The same way the conflict with The Governor and Woodbury is completely different than the conflict with Negan and the Saviors... in almost every single way. If you think those two huge storylines are the same, this book just isn't for you. And that's fine!"

AMC's The Walking Dead returns for the second half of its ninth season Sunday, February 10. In Rick's absence, the surviving humans must face off against the dreaded Whisperers, led by Alpha (Samantha Morton) and Beta (Ryan Hurst). The comic, of course, continues to hit shelves monthly — with Rick Grimes still in charge of things.


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