Walking Dead Creator Says Daryl Dixon Changed the Story

Walking Dead Creator Says Daryl Dixon Changed the Story

Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman commented recently that the presence of new characters like Daryl Dixon has forced the writers to rethink how established stories would work.

One of the most jarring things for me as a fan of Robert Kirkman's comic series The Walking Dead was watching the TV show and seeing some of the immediate and big changes it made. It's not that I wanted an exact page-to-screen translation (except I kind of did), it was mostly just that I loved the comic book and was dying to see my favorite moments played out in the same way on my flat screen. All of that said, with time I grew to appreciate some of the changes the TV show made, with one of my favorites, of course, being the Norman Reedus's Daryl Dixon.

That in mind, Kirkman recently commented that the presence of new characters like Daryl has been one of the biggest forces driving the show in fresh and different directions. "When we sit down to write the show one of the first things we deal with is: 'How does Daryl Dixon change this story,'" he said. "Because we always start from: 'Ok, we like this part of the comic. How are we going to do it?'" In other words, the presence of new and altered characters has meant a lot rethinking how the story's plot points play out.

That said, while Kirkman would say that characters like Daryl have helped keep the show "interesting," it doesn't sound like fans of the book will need to worry about elements of the show leaking into the plot of the comic. According to Kirkman, he doesn't necessarily think it would be a "bad thing" for Daryl to show up in the comics, but he "really likes the separation" between the show and the book. What do you think? Are you itching for characters from the show to make their way to the comic or would you agree that the two are best kept unique and separate entities?

Source: Blastr


it's funny, because I think the same way, but I process it on a slightly deeper level. I don't process it from a creative standpoint necessarily, I just think the TV show exists in an alternate dimension where Daryl Dixon exists and EVERY difference between the show and the comics - the different paths the characters take and the different characters they meet, are all directly influenced by the presence or non-presence of Daryl. In a nutshell, Rick still has his hand in the tv show because of Daryl. Tyrese wasn't an early adoption of the group because of Daryl. Now, there's no real concrete link between these and other differences in the show, although there's one that stands out as a DIRECT influence to prove my point - Carol. Carol is about as different as a character can be in the show from the comic, and 100% of that was due to her having Daryl to keep her centered. That example is just a solid fact. My argument is that EVERY difference between the series is due to Daryl - if Daryl hadn't been in the show, the show's storyline would have been identical to the comic.

I know this is crazy. But it was the easiest way for the raging nerd in me to cope with the differences between the two series, and it was an interesting enough theory that was plausible enough for me to latch onto the idea.

Now the Kirkman has said that the presence of Daryl really does influence the writing of the show, I feel something akin to nerd vindication christmas. I mean, of course Daryl influences the writing of the show and makes it different - he's a main character and by and large the most popular character in the show. That revelation isn't really news worthy. However to me this rings particularly true. I'm going to read this as confirmation of my theory, even if it totally isn't.

I think a Daryl/Merle cameo would be cool if they did it at some point in the comic. It could be their alternative universe counterparts that became a pair of raider brothers, attacking travelers and taking their stuff. This version of Daryl could have been kind of corrupted by Merle's focus on survival and had his moral center suppressed and become a heartless killer, and Rick and the group would have too take them down. I think it'd be interesting.

I should hope that the alterations give them new reactions to the script writing. Carol can't be or act like a hot, young, single mom if she's not young. Or hot.

It's interesting how Daryl came to be such a prominent force in the show, but all of the characters are basically different versions of themselves with one attribute tweaked. Take Dale, for instance. Dale was a wise old man but he could, and often did, get angrier than he ever got in the show. Rick is just a lot more assertive too soon into the story, Carl is more of a child, Shane was more of a psychopathic dick as opposed to a guy that just snapped.

I like the TV show for what it is, and I'm not one of those 'the book/comic is always better' sort of people, but the television series does just enough wrong, for my part, with the characters that I no longer go out of my way to watch it. Instead I catch updates from my dad when we get together. He tells me what happened in the show, and I tell him what happened in the comic. I actually think it's a lot more fun this way and I'm able to at least have these kinds of exchanges with people I meet who also have only watched the show.

I'm in the "it's an alternate universe" camp. I enjoy both the comic and the TV show, they are different beasts but both have their merits. I don't particularly understand why Daryl is everyone's favourite though, he seems a little flat to me, besides the cool crossbow. Oh wait, the cool crossbow!

this sort of thing happened in the dead zone tv series where where the guy's physical therapist through the whole book plot out of whack
they even address it in a alternate time line episode

I've followed the comic since its first trade paperback, so I've appreciated the differences that are in the tv series. I'm often hard pressed to choose which medium has been doing a better job of portraying the walking dead adventure. The tv series has tended to effectively expand upon elements from the comic (the build-up and conclusion to the prison, for example), whereas the latest story arcs in the comic keep pushing in unexpected directions that keep the series fresh.

That is interesting to know about the show. I love the comic, though I am starting to fear if he doesn't get around to wrapping it up soon the story may start showing some considerable "wear". But I am optimistic. Now the show like most people was a love/hate relationship. Not so much the adaptation style, just they had a history of terrible pacing. Also they screwed up some great characters, my chief complaint being Andrea. A woman who grows to be self assured, resourceful, and a sharpshooter in the book; in the show well....annoying. Thing is I really enjoy what I have seen of the third season so far (stopped about 7th episode), and it was not following a storyline from the books. Could be they finally understand there previous model (characters talk, suspense setup for next show, then resolve problem in first few minutes of next episode, repeat) is not a good one. If they continue focusing on their own stories I am interested to see where it will lead.

EDIT: replace my 3rd season with 4th newest season by the way

I want characters from the game to appear in the show. Namely Lee, or maybe a passing encounter with a small group who have Clem with them.

I want characters from the game to appear in the show. Namely Lee, or maybe a passing encounter with a small group who have Clem with them.

Honestly, don't we just want a show to be the TTG version anyways?

Look, they've got like 50 Law and Order shows...why couldn't it work here?

In other news, poor Kirkman is still butthurt that a character he didn't create is more popular than the ones he did. If Daryl dies we all riot.

In the Talking Dead show (the talk show right after walking dead) Kirkman once said "The more loved a character is, the more horrible we like to make their deaths, to give them meaning."

Dude, with how popular Daryl is, I doubt even the circles of hell will have anything on his death scene.

With that motto, I'm pretty sure his death might even become a two-part episode.


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