The Walking Dead Spinoff Is A Bad Idea
Saul Goodman got his own spinoff from the amazing Breaking Bad series, that’s sadly coming to an end in just a couple episodes, and AMC already decided they needed add another companion series to one of the their most popular shows, The Walking Dead. Already heading towards its ridiculously anticipate fourth season, The Walking Dead is still thriving and electrifying their constantly growing audience. I love The Walking Dead, I’ve been reading the comics since issue one, I’ve watched every episode of the show at least twice, but this is a bad idea.
Why? Really because we don’t need it. You have a core group of character’s that we’ve spent just over 40 episodes investing in and then you’re just going to try and distract us from them with more? A lot of people don’t just watch The Walking Dead to see Daryl pop zombies in the head with is crossbow–even if it’s one of the best parts–people watch because it’s a show about human nature, survival. Simply put, their response to these unimaginable situations. That’s what zombie movies and shows are about. People in a world of death, undead and hopelessness trying to figure out what the hell they’re going to do, where are they going from here, how do they become normal again. That’s what The Walking Dead is, it’s just like a zombie movie, but is even better because it never ends. We get to see how almost every and any kind of situation plays out and then look forward to new ones, trying to rekindle any sense of regularity before this entire problem. It’s the core that we’ve become familiar with that makes it such a potent illustration to invest in.
Would adding more take away from that? The genre has already had periods of over-saturation and we’re finally at a point were people really enjoy it again. I think it’s fine where it is.
It’s not AMC looking to squeeze marque for all it’s worth (I hope). I think that they have adequate taste in television and they’ve proven themselves with shows like Mad Men, Breaking Bad and The Walking Dead, even Low Winter’s Sun is shaping up. But they’ve swung and missed the ball entirely with shows like The Killing, which has been canceled twice and Hell on Wheels which falls flat compared to anything else they offer. The network is trying to add another tool to their wheelhouse, especially with the departure of Breaking Bad in two episodes and Mad Men in 2015, they need something to fill those voids, something to match that quality and it won’t be easy to find. If anything, the originality of the shows are what make them most attractive. If we see more Walking Dead we could already be desensitized to any familiar content. It would totally loose it’s punch, it’d be like watching George A. Romero trying to crank out another zombie movie that ends the same way. Dawn of the Dead (which was amazing), Day of the Dead, Night of the Living Dead, Diary of the Dead, Land of the Dead, Day of the dead,etc. No knock on Romero of course, the master of zombie cinema, but your desire to watch these types of movies and television is eventually worn down.
Again, I love this show, but it’s not perfect. It’s had dry spots peppered throughout its few seasons, especially the second. There are many times where this show has dragged along but usually the end result is more than worth the wait. The comic is an entirely different story but we can get into that later.
I’m really wondering where they plan on going with it since no particular source of inspiration has been identified yet. The stories based off the Telltale’s Walking Dead games have received many popular nominations but they’re fine where they are. There’s no need to bring them to live-action television because they work perfectly as games and the acclaim they receive is evident of that. And even if they did bring it to television, a mini-series or one-shot episode would be plenty enough to justify its onscreen transition. This new show will be built from the ground up and I don’t see how they can do that without replicating some of what they already have with the series their running now or something we’ve seen before.
I just don’t understand the reason to add another dystopian, zombie, survival story when we still have a long way to go with the main series itself—seriously guys if you aren’t reading the comics check them out, you’ll know what I mean—it seems unnecessary. What could they do that’s so outlandish that we haven’t seen in The Walking Dead?
Really the only upside is that creator of the comic the television series is based on, Robert Kirkman, is 100% behind this idea. But still, he’s only functioning at the capacity of a producer. Among that, he’s got two other television shows in the works (Clone and Thief of Thieves) and of course he’s still writing comics, so he’s already spread pretty thin. A consulting presence is the highest capacity he can function at. His influence on the show is greatly appreciated, even if you may not notice it.
The majority of the content targeted towards this new idea might come from someone else entirely separate from what we’ve seen. But would it be stable and consistent is the bigger question. Considering The Walking Dead has already had three show runners in three seasons, that’s not too comforting of a notion. Who would they put up to take over a show that plays second fiddle when they are troubled finding someone to capital their most important project.They’d have to make it good to hold a decent candle to what we already have and that doesn’t seem like an easy task at all. Instead why not keep expanding on what we have. I’d even be open to longer episodes. I’d even be open to longer episodes. Just don’t try and overwhelm us with something we’re not asking for.
Of course there’s the off chance that it’s a runaway hit, but then “viewer-cannibalism” becomes an issue. One show might suffer because they’ve become more interested in the other and a whole new problem is put into motion. Adding another show just makes things complicated.
I get it, people need their zombie fix nowadays and The Walking Dead is the perfect amount of fleshing eating undead folks we need right now, don’t bring in too much AMC, please. Don’t bring in so much that we overdose.