The Walking Dead is an incredibly popular text, transcending many different generations and piquing the interests of many current television junkies. The interesting thing about The Walking Dead is that, while the TV show is arguably the most popular form of the text, it actually began as a comic book. The television show is simply an adaptation, it uses the same characters as the comic, however it deviates from the comic’s story and includes characters that are created specifically for the show. For example, one of the most popular characters on the show, Darryl is actually a television exclusive character. The AMC series used the comic as a baseline idea and ran with it, creating a wildly successful show that has somewhat overshadowed the comic.
However, the positive of this is that the television show can bring the audience to the other media forms of The Walking Dead. Along with a television show, the comic has been adapted into multiple video games, developed by Telltale Games. The Walking Dead has become such a pervasive franchise that it’s become a household name. In fact, my 8 year old nephew knows the show. He’s never seen it, but he knows it as the “zombie show”. Remixing an idea and a franchise so many times and across so many platforms like this, is actually a very interesting way to both expand the universe and investigate the universe. As all of these media are set in the singular Walking Dead universe, but they take place in various times and locations. Specifically, with the Walking Dead game it allows a level of interactivity that no other Walking Dead media has featured. The game is essentially a point-and-click adventure game, but the game focuses more on the story of the game than gameplay. The game does something similar to the television show does, it creates original characters for it’s game and follows them.
The success of these different media can function as a precedent for other media that might potentially want to cross the platform divides and grow both their audience and their content. It allows for different perspectives on either the same story or, like the Walking Dead, create entirely new stories within the universe.
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