The Walking Dead has enjoyed immense success because of the strong characters and even crazier scenarios that they find themselves in. Despite the success Walking Dead seems to be struggling with one thing and that is killing off some of its big time players.
I have been a huge fan since day one and one of my favorite things about this show was that no one felt safe and that at any given moment we could be witnessing our favorite survivor fall victim to the undead. During the early stages it felt like one wrong move could spell instant peril for the entire group.
Since the prison story line it has felt like even the bad decisions these characters make just leads to another decision to learn and make it right somewhere else. Perhaps that is the intended message of the last 2 seasons. Perhaps the greater message of this show is that we need to forgive ourselves for our actions if we do it in the name of survival. If that is the intended message then I feel like they are cheating us what they originally promised. The producers promised us an unrelenting attempt at survival but that meant us connecting with people just to have them ripped away.
Remember Dale? Remember Lori? Remember T-Dogg? Remember Shane? Remember Beth? Remember Herschel? Remember when each one of those characters had full progression and did not just blow things up to get out of the latest pinch.
When I talk about Walking Dead I always bring up Season 2 and there is a definite reason for that. It painted a morally ambiguous villain in Shane. He did the wrong things for all the right reasons and was the very first person to see how dangerous the living could become and that all happened within his own head.
The Walking Dead has always posted posters and trailer with the tagline “No One is Safe”. Except lately that seems like no one is safe unless your name is Rick, Daryl, Glenn, Maggie, Carol, Carl, Abraham or Morgan. With Negan coming it should all but solidify that not just one but at least two of the characters mentioned above should join the cast of the living dead before the season is out. I am not holding my breath for a game changing season finale because that is what they have promised the last 3 seasons and I have been left disappointed because it was nothing but extreme build up.
This show at times has become too focused on the brand and how to maintain the large audience. Which I understand is important, but they lost focus on the most important thing of all and that is delivering quality entertainment for those who have been fans of The Walking Dead long before it ever graced our television screens.