The Walking Dead lost me, as it lost many others, as a viewer some time ago. I could just about stand the relentless misery of the show. However the whole Negan situation taking at least two seasons more than it should have to move anywhere totally lost me, as did the strange bowl-cut woman who lived in the dump.
I figured there were only so many times I could sit through exactly the same story over and over again – find community, live OK for a while, something happens to place community at risk so they fight, then “Oh my God, maybe WE are the monsters after all!” – rinse and repeat. So I bailed.
However despite just about everybody I speak to saying they have also bailed, somehow the show remains one of the highest rated on TV. It’s high point must have been stratospheric as even with the much discussed decline in viewers it is still a ratings monster.
However the show does seem to have been declining in reputation since Frank Darabont left and they have long wanted to do something to regain their original status of being the number one show on TV for a reason. Spin-off shows The Walking Dead: A World Beyond and Fear The Walking Dead are just not cutting it, so they decided they needed a movie. For that movie Andrew Lincoln will return to the role of Rick Grimes.
That project has been on and off in development. Just when things were lining up to start the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Everything went quiet. For a while it looked potentially as dead as one of the Walkers. Then a virtual Skybound Xpo panel took place last weekend and Skybound Entertainment co-founder David Alpert said:
“We’re coming along in a big way. We’re just in this particular space where we have [to wait]. We can’t shoot right now, so that’s just the big thing holding us back. We are desperate to get back into production, and get everything going, but we have something really exciting, really unique, really different, and can’t wait to get it going. We just have to wait for it to be safe.”
The original comic author and TV series producer Robert Kirkman is a key creative on this endeavor and says Rick is a key focus:
“There’s tons of stuff going on behind the scenes. I don’t want anyone to think that we’re just kind of waiting around for this pandemic to end. I would say that, if anything, the pandemic is going to make a lot of movies better. I think the Rick Grimes movie chief among them, just because we’re getting a lot more time to cook this thing and make sure it’s perfect. But when things do quiet down, you guys are going to hear a ton more about this movie.”
There is also some comics coming with Kirkman confirming there will be two issues a month of the original run being re-released including Kirkman’s original handwritten plot notes.
What do you think? Is there still life in this concept, show and franchise?