The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman tried to kill off Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) early in the TV series so audiences would “freak out”.
During a panel at San Diego Comic-Con on Saturday (July 22), the comic writer and show producer recalled how he wanted to deviate from the comic source material as much as possible during the early days of The Walking Dead series.
“With Walking Dead, I was much younger and much more reckless,” Kirkman said (via Entertainment Weekly). “I was an absolute lunatic. I would get in the writers’ room and be like, ‘Kill Rick Grimes today! I don’t care! It’ll be funny! People will freak out, and it’ll be fun!’
“The writers are like, ‘Robert, you’re crazy. We can’t do that.’ But any time there were big changes in The Walking Dead, that’s what excited me.”
In the TV series, Rick Grimes left in season nine, where he was last seen being taken away in a CRM helicopter. A spin-off titled The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live, which debuts in 2024, will see Lincoln reprise the role alongside Danai Gurira as Michonne. In the comics, however, Rick was killed off by Kirkman in 2019.
At this year’s Comic-Con, AMC announced both The Walking Dead: Dead City and the upcoming Daryl Dixon spin-off series will return for a second season. The latter also received a debut trailer, where Daryl (Norman Reedus) finds himself in France.
Speaking about the renewals, AMC’s Dan McDermott said: “This next chapter in the Walking Dead Universe continues to thrive with a terrific inaugural season for Dead City and highly anticipated new journey for fan-favourite character Daryl Dixon coming in September.
“We can’t wait to bring Dead City fans back to the epicenter of Manhattan for more zip-lining action with Maggie and Negan. And, ahead of its debut, we’re thrilled to double down on Daryl as we bring the apocalypse to France, transforming Notre Dame, Pont du Gard and other iconic locales into an apocalyptic landscape unlike anything we’ve seen before.”