While AMC announced that season 11 would be the final season of The Walking Dead, the TV franchise will live on in at least four spinoff series, including the recently announced anthology series Tales of the Walking Dead. At New York Comic Con Metaverse’s “Showrunner Summit” panel, the showrunners on the flagship TWD series, Fear: The Walking Dead, and The Walking Dead: World Beyond pitched ideas for the anthology series to Chief Content Officer Scott M. Gimple.
The exercise was meant as a game, but gave fans an idea of what kinds of stories fans can look forward to in this new series. Of everything in the TWD connected universe, it’s this series that fans know the least about. A news release in September described Tales of the Walking Dead as “an episodic anthology with individual episodes or arcs of episodes focused on new or existing characters, backstories or other stand-alone experiences.”
“This is like an all-star writer’s room!” Gimple joked in the NYCC panel, pretending to take notes.
The Walking Dead showrunner Angela Kang threw out a story about the road trip that brought Abraham, Eugene, and Rosita to Rick Grimes and his survivors, as well as the origin of the cannibals at Terminus. Matthew Negrete, showrunner on World Beyond, wanted to explore two of his own characters that were so secretive he couldn’t even say if they showed up on the show together or apart. Fear co-showrunner Ian Goldberg suggested the rise of Virginia, Colby Minifie’s antagonistic character. Fear’s Andrew Chambliss hoped to see the cosmonaut who spoke to Victor Strand on his series, as well as Eastman from the original series.
Of all these suggestions, the latter seems to be the most likely to actually happen. Gimple said that he has spoken to actor John Carroll Lynch, who played Eastman on The Walking Dead, and he is “game” to reprise his role. However, “not all of [the Tales’ subjects] will be characters we knew,” Gimple said seriously. “Some of them will be brand new stuff.”
The panel, hosted by Entertainment Weekly’s Dalton Ross, also teased some exciting casting on The Walking Dead. Kang did not name names, but said that folks in her “age bracket” would be excited about who is joining the show. She mentioned an upcoming storyline from the comics, likely referring to the Commonwealth’s cliffhanger-y arrival on The Walking Dead. Gimple mentioned the potential for future crossovers with characters from World Beyond.
Overall, the immediate future of The Walking Dead across the entire franchise will see smaller, character-based stories rather than big battles — mostly due to COVID-19 filming restrictions and safety protocols. From what we’ve heard, Tales of The Walking Dead will be no different.
The Walking Dead: World Beyond air Sundays on AMC. Fear The Walking Dead premieres a new season on 10/11. The Walking Dead Season 10 will resume in 2021. Tales of The Walking Dead’s arrival, however, has yet to be locked down on the calendar.