Comic Con: Robert Kirkman Talks THE WALKING DEAD 10th Anniversary Celebration, His Plans For Future Issues, and More

     July 18, 2013

robert kirkman walking dead comic con

To celebrate the 10th anniversary of his widely-popular graphic novel, creator Robert Kirkman hit the stage to partake in a solo panel where he presented some of the art for upcoming issues of The Walking Dead and talked about his plans for future storytelling, before opening the floor to fan questions. During the panel, Kirkman talked about why he doesn’t like picking a favorite character, a future in-color issue of the series, and if there’s a place for Daryl in the comic books. Hit the jump for highlights from the panel.

  • the-walking-dead-comic-book-cover-01Kirkman spoke a bit about the debut of the graphic novel back in October of 2003 and expressed being genuinely shocked that it’s lasted so long. After a bit of trouble with the powerpoint presentation — and joking about the panel being dedicated solely on getting it fixed — Kirkman unveiled some of the artwork for issues 116 and 117, in which he says the storyline “ramps up fairly quickly” and there’s “not a lot of build up” to the action.
  • He talked about his plans for the upcoming “All Out War” story arc that will begin in a future issue of The Walking Dead, due for release on October 9th of this year. “All Out War” will consist of a 12-part story arc that will run over the course of 7 months and will revolve around Rick’s plans to take down Negan. In addition to this new story arc, The Walking Dead will release a special edition of issue 1, in color, as part of its 10th anniversary celebration. The issue will include bonus content that Kirkman says will be “very cool.”
  • When asked about his plans to further dig into Negan’s backstory and his past, Kirkman says it’s something he plans on doing and we’ll get snippets of as the story progresses. However, he admits that he likes the character being an unknown for now.
  • Fans of the comics shouldn’t worry that certain storylines will be skipped on the show due to the demise of some characters in the TV series. There’s always a chance for a storyline from the graphic novel to pop up in the show.
  • Getting a little more technical — or in this case, not so much — if you’ve been dying to know what Kirkman uses to create his written masterpieces, he confessed that he writes everything in Pages. “I’m extremely lazy when it comes to technology,” he admitted.
  • Moving into spoiler territory, a fan questioned how Glenn’s death in the comics would affect the storyline moving forward. “That was the catalyst that set everything into motion,” Kirkman responded, assuring that Glenn’s presence will definitely be felt and will be in the center of everything that happens when Rick wages war against Negan.
  • the-walking-dead-comicHe worries that expressing his liking for a particular character will make people assume that they’re safe. He likes writing scenes and telling the story, so his favorite character depends on who he’s dealing with at the time, “it rotates.”
  • There won’t be any development when it comes to the walkers, “that’s a Romero trope I should stay away from,” Kirkman confessed, stating that the zombies will only be different because of decay but not evolve, “The humans will learn more about them but they won’t change.” He did mention plans, however, to introduce more children into the storyline.
  • He reiterated, as he’s done in the past, that no one is safe in the book and he thinks that if Rick were ever to die, the series could survive without him, as there are other characters that could be the central focus of the story. Kirkman did point out that the show has proven that characters that have died in the comic don’t necessarily die in show, “Neither dictates the other.”
  • Daryl fans who would like to see him introduced in the comics may be out of luck. Kirkman said that he’s a great addition to the TV series but his presence might not work in the book. “I feel like it would ruin things to bring Daryl into the comic book,” he said.
  • On his favorite comics: Kirkman’s always been a fan of Savage Dragon & more recently, The Manhattan Projects. As far as TV shows go, his favorites are Breaking Bad and Sons of Anarchy.
  • In true Kirkman fashion, he ended the panel the same way he started it — joking with the audience. He expressed his disappointment with us for not having questions ready and having awkward pauses when no questions were asked. “I expected more from you people,” he concluded with a smile.

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