The Walking Dead Author Wanted to Kill Rick Grimes Early On for the Most Bizarre Reason
"Killing off the titular character at the beginning of the hit series just to make fans shriek in horror? Absolutely," thought Robert Kirkman, and went on to pitch this idea to the writers.
The Walking Dead was one of the defining shows of the 2010s that pretty much revived global interest in the zombie apocalypse genre. Spanning across eleven seasons, this show had millions of people glued to their screens in horror and anticipation of their favorite characters' inevitable demise.
Through all the terrors and dangers on their never-ending path to survival, the audience's favorite small team was led by Rick Grimes — a former Sheriff who found himself right in the middle of the apocalypse as he woke up from a coma. For the survivors, Rick was the essential leader: a tough but just man that took no offense to his people and only grew more brutal and no-BS as the show went on.
Even though Rick was eventually replaced with Daryl as the leader and the main protagonist, it's safe to say that without him, most other members of the team wouldn't have survived for long. When you say "The Walking Dead," you think "Rick Grimes": that's just the way things are. This only makes Robert Kirkman's revelation more startling as apparently, the author of The Walking Dead comic wanted to kill Rick early on!
"With Walking Dead, I was much younger and much more reckless. 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 were like, 'Robert, you're crazy. We can't do that,'" shared Kirkman at San Diego Comic-Con.
Not only was Kirkland willing to sacrifice the central character of his series, but he also wanted to do that for no particular reason other than "it'll be funny." What an absolute mad lad, almost axing his own hit series out of the blue... Good thing the writers were very much not on board with that idea, otherwise we don't think The Walking Dead would've lasted very long back then.