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‘The Walking Dead’ showrunner Scott Gimple on season 5, end game and more

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The AMC version of “The Walking Dead” has taken a much different approach to the tale told by Robert Kirkman’s comic book series but does an excellent job of sticking to the original’s overall themes. The Inquistr posted a report on June 29 citing show runner Scott Gimple’s vision for season 5 and his views on the differences between the TV series and the comic books plus much more.

Some changes from comic book to TV show such as those involving the character of Daryl Dixon and the time spent on the farm in season 2 were actually driven by Kirkman himself. Those changes necessitated other changes. Gimple says when he took over the helm in season 2, he was of the opinion that they were going to follow the comic book series. Kirkman had other ideas Gimple explained.

“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,’” Gimple said. “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.”

Season 4 saw another departure from the comic series with less focus on the zombies and more focus on character development and backstory. The move paid off with almost 16 million viewers watching the season 4 finale of “The Walking Dead.” The season also won rave critical reviews.

Season 5, according to Gimple, will not simply mirror the previous season although the show hopes to entertain growing numbers of audience members. “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,” Gimple explained.

Some fans wonder where this will take “The Walking Dead” as a TV series. Kirkman has been quoted in the media as saying there is enough material for the series to fill out at least 12 seasons and potentially as many as 15. That would seem to imply that the showrunners do have an end game in mind.

When asked, Gimple said, “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.” He admits that Kirkman has offered to tell him the whole story. Gimple knows the general gist of where things are going, the emotional end game. There are some aspects, though that he believes need to stay in line with the comics.

“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.”

“The Walking Dead” season 5 will premiere sometime this October. Over Fourth of July, AMC will air a marathon for fans that want to a refresher and can’t wait until fall to get their fix.

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