“The Walking Dead” is a hugely popular show that won’t return until sometime in October. In the meantime, showrunner Scott Gimple has been talking about what we can expect in season 5 and what he knows about the new spinoff series, according to a July 1 post on Geek Tyrant.
With regard to staying to true to the comic book roots of the series, Gimple says, “It’s funny – back in the day when I started season two, I was all ‘We must hem to the comic’ and Kirkman was like ‘Well – let’s have some fun. I’ve done this all before.’ I certainly won’t abandon iconic things from the comic. I definitely want to stick to the comic as much as possible but that’s also impossible with Daryl Dixon and characters that are alive but dead in the comic. There’s a butterfly effect. But that’s actually an incredibly fun part of the [show]. I would say that even the inventions we have on the show are inspired by the comic."
For fans that follow the comic book series, this can go either way. Some are irritates when the show doesn’t follow the story in the comics. Others find the changes refreshing and enjoy not knowing exactly what is going to happen next. So what can we expect from the upcoming fifth season?
"[Season 5's] not mirroring [the previous season] completely… The challenge of the show is every eight episodes, it’s a whole new show. I will say that there may be some slightly familiar structural turns. But for the most part, it is going to be brand new versions of the comic story."
So fans of the comics may be able to tell where the story is going. The rest of us will have to sit back and enjoy the ride, whichever way it goes.
As for the spinoff, Gimple had less info to share. He was asked if there will be any crossover between the original “The Walking Dead” and the new show.
"I have little to do with the spinoff… This I do know. It’s set in the world of The Walking Dead but from what I understand, it’s not like Daryl’s cousin or anything… I would never say never [to a crossover between the shows] because if I was a viewer I would say that sounds awesome. But we’re doing our own show. I also think a crossover might be tough because it would take a lot of [license] within the comic story. We’ll see. When we get to all-out war, who knows? We’ll add another faction. It’ll be the Saviors and the Hilltop and the ‘Spin-offers’."
It sounds like Gimple has a pretty good idea where the original series is headed. Robert Kirkman and executive producer and the creator of the comic books has said there is definitely enough material to do 12 seasons and maybe as many as 15. At some point, the series, like any other, will have to come to an end. What does Gimple know about how that will come about?
"I would say ‘Yes’ [there is an end-game]. I actually don’t like spoiling myself on the comic. I read it as I go. Robert’s offered to tell me the whole thing so I get general aspects of it. I know the emotional end game of the show but there’s practical aspects, I want to keep with the comic. With these characters, you definitely have to think of the emotional endgame and that is very much a part of where I’m headed. But I want to have the flexibility to change the practicals with the comic and I don’t want Robert to spoil the whole series for me."
It sounds like “The Walking Dead” fans won’t have to worry for a very long time about the show ending. Even if it does, the spinoff series could continue even farther. Now wouldn’t that be something! Season 5 will return to AMC in the fall, probably in late September. Until then, we’ll do our best to keep you posted on updates and spoilers.