Welcome to Completely Comics Episode 52: Completely The Walking Dead: the Comic verses the TV show!
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Troy and Will lead a panel during Conglomeration 2012 on The Walking Dead: Comparing the Comic to the TV show. For the panel we used the notes below as well as the thoughts and opinions of everyone that attended the panel.
Taken from walkingdeadforums.com
If you are too lazy/cheap to read the comics, but want to know how they differ from the TV series, this should help fill in the gaps. I will try to pass over the more trivial things. For instance, in the comics, Rick puts on a pair of jeans and a t-shirt before leaving the hospital, but in the show, he travels to his house in his hospital gown. This information is neither important nor interesting, so who cares?
1. In the TV show, Rick is from a small town in Georgia, but in the comics, he is from a small town in Kentucky.
2. In the comics, we never see Shane visit Rick in the hospital; the little girl Rick shoots in the beginning of episode one doesn’t exist in the comics.
3. The TV show delays Rick’s first encounter with zombies a bit – in the comics, he finds a barred door (but it doesn’t have “Don’t Open – Dead Inside” written on it), opens it, and finds a cafeteria full of walkers.
4. Morgan’s zombie wife is not in the comic books. Rick never gives Morgan a radio in the comics; he does however give him a police car.
6. In the comics, when Rick enters Atlanta, he does see a tank, but neither he nor anyone else ever crawls under/hides inside of it. After being pulled from his horse, he just runs, and is suddenly grabbed and pulled into an alley by Glenn. He also never drops his bag of guns.
7. After Glenn rescues Rick in the comics, they do not meet up with other survivors inside the city. They just run/sneak past the walkers, and run back to the camp, which is where Rick finds his family and where he first meets everyone (except Glenn, who he met in the city, and Shane, Lori and Carl, who he already knew). The campsite is also MUCH closer to the city – only a few hundred yards away – so they escape on foot.
8. In the comic books, Shane never tells Lori that Rick is dead. He just helps her and Carl get out of the city; on the road, and in a moment of desperation and weakness, Lori sleeps with Shane once and immediately regrets it. In the TV show, it seems to be an ongoing relationship.
9. There are a number of people on the TV show who do not exist in the comics: Merle, Daryl, Jacqui, Morales and his family, and all the people in the campsite who never had speaking roles and were killed in the zombie attack. There is a large, black former-football player named Tyreese in the comics, but no “T-Dawg”. I assume they are in fact the same person.
10. Carol is in the comics, but she is not married to Ed, she is a single mom. There is a character a little like Ed, but his name is Allen and he has 2 twin sons, and a wife named Donna. He is not an abusive husband or father.
11. In the comics, because Rick didn’t drop the guns and Merle doesn’t exist, Rick never leads a second group of people into the city. On one occasion, Glenn leads Rick to a gunstore where they become trapped and it is then that they smear themselves with zombie guts and sneak around them. Again, the campsite is close enough to the city for them to escape on foot.
12. Because no second group goes back for Merle or the bag of guns, they never meet the Vatos or visit a nursing home. In fact, they don’t meet any other survivors until they reach Herschel’s farm.
13. In the comics, shortly after they meet, Dale warns Rick that a) no one likes or trusts Shane, and b) Shane is in love with Lori.
14. In the comics, Rick and Shane get into an arguement about whether they should leave the campsite. Shane punches Rick in the face. Shortly afterwards, Rick and Shane are alone in the woods and Shane pulls a gun out and prepares to kill Rick. Carl (who is already carrying a gun at all times) has secretly been following them, and he shoots Shane through the throat, killing him almost instantly. Only after Shane is dead do the others decide to leave camp.
15. Absolutely NOTHING from the final episode of season 1 (“TS-19”) happens in the comics. This episode is the largest deviation from the original story so far, except maybe for Merle/Daryl being there. The characters on the TV show already know FAR more about the disease and its effect on the rest of the world than the comic book characters do. Actually, there has never been any mention of other countries in the comics, and no one has been able to tell them anything about what the disease is, how it started, what it does, etc. No one has tried to reach the CDC.
16. In the comics, the survivors quickly begin calling the walkers “zombies”, and admit it seemed silly to say that word at first, but soon felt more natural. Frank Darabont, Robert Kirkman, etc have made it clear that this will not happen in the TV series. In the universe of the TV show, the word “zombies” doesn’t exist, and neither do the movies of George Romero.
Taken from Wikipedia.com
The Walking Dead (season 1)
Season one follows sheriff’s deputy Rick Grimes as he attempts to find his family and lead them to safety. The series begins with Rick waking up from a coma. He awakes to a post-apocalyptic world overrun with zombies (or “walkers” as they are termed in show). Leaving the hospital Rick discovers his wife and son are missing. Acting on a rumour from a fellow survivor he arms himself and begins a perilous journey to Atlanta, Georgia, where the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is said to have set up a quarantined “safe-zone” in the city, reasoning that his family may be there. During his journey, Rick sees the devastation to both society and infrastructure left by the disaster. Upon reaching Atlanta, he soon discovers that the city is overrun by the undead and is no longer a safe zone.
A few miles outside the city Rick’s wife Lori and son Carl have been hiding from the walkers with Shane Walsh, Rick’s former colleague and best friend. They have established a camp with a small group of survivors. After being rescued from Atlanta by the group and reunited with Lori and Carl, Rick assumes command of the group with Shane. Part of the group goes back into Atlanta to recover weapons, where they come into conflict with other survivors but Rick soon eases the tensions. On their return to their camp, they find it has been nearly overrun by walkers. Hoping to find medical treatment for an injured member, the remainder of the group decide to return to Atlanta and seek aid from the CDC.In the CDC “safezone”, all but one staff member, Dr. Edwin Jenner, have either fled or killed themselves. Dr. Jenner explains that his research into the cause of the infection has not yielded a cure. The CDC building is not the safe haven the group believed it would be. The following day, lack of fuel for the generators causes the safety protocols to be initiated. An explosion, meant to prevent the escape of deadly diseases, will destroy the CDC. Dr. Jenner explains that the French may have found a cure, as they survived the longest in their labs. Dr. Jenner and Jacqui, a member of Rick’s group, decide to stay in the CDC and end their struggle. Another member of the group, Andrea, attempts to stay as well due to her despair after her sister Amy’s death. Dale stays with her and says that if she doesn’t leave, he won’t. To prevent his death, Andrea makes a last minute decision to leave, thus saving them both. Before the group flees, Dr. Jenner whispers something into Rick’s ear. The group escapes just as Jenner and Jacqui are killed by the explosion.
Season 2 (2011–2012)
Main article: The Walking Dead (season 2)
The second season begins with Rick and his group of survivors escaping the CDC. They decide that Fort Benning would be their next destination. Along the way, they come across a traffic jam of abandoned vehicles on I-85. The group loots several vehicles and, as a large horde of walkers approach, are forced to hide under the vehicles. Sophia runs off into the woods to escape a walker. Carl is accidentally shot during the initial search. The remaining group deals with interpersonal relationships while various searches for Sophia are performed. Otis, the man who shot Carl, leads Rick and Shane to a large, isolated farm owned by a veterinarian named Hershel Greene. The survivors move to the farm while Carl recovers. Rick’s group tries to co-exist alongside Hershel’s family, but dangerous secrets and disagreements over leadership cause tensions to rise. Glenn builds a romantic relationship with one of Hershel’s daughters. He also discovers that Hershel’s barn is full of walkers, some of which are Hershel´s family members. When Shane forces the walkers out of the barn and the group open fire, Sophia appears as a walker and is shot by Rick.
Hershel, reacting to what has happened, orders Rick and his group to leave immediately, before disappearing to grieve for his family. Daryl begins to withdraw from the group. Rick and Glenn go searching for Hershel and discover him drinking heavily in a local tavern. After trying to persuade Hershel to return, two other men enter the bar: survivors from another group. The situation rapidly turns sour and there is a brief but bloody gunfight which leaves the two new survivors dead. The dead men’s former group quickly finds and opens fire on Rick, Hershel, and Glenn at the bar. The noise of the firefight attracts a large horde of walkers, and in their desperation to get away, the other group of survivors leave one of their members, Randall, behind. Rick cannot stand the thought of leaving him to be killed by walkers, so the three blindfold him and take him to the farm. However, once they get him there, they realize that he could lead the remainder of his former group to the farm. Rick decides to drive Randall into the countryside to abandon him but is attacked by walkers during a disagreement with Shane. Shortly before the walkers arrival, Randall confessed that he had previously been to Hershel’s farm. With the secrecy of the farm’s location compromised, Rick decides to bring Randall back for possible execution. Hershel’s daughter Beth tries to kill herself in order to escape a seemingly hopeless situation. The group deliberates over the fate of Randall and, despite Dale’s protests, decide to execute him. Carl begins experimenting in danger, and is found watching Rick as he prepares to execute Randall. Dale is fatally wounded by a walker, and as a result is killed by Daryl as an act of mercy. After Dale’s funeral, the group decides that they need to rediscover their humanity. The group conducts a search for Randall, whom Shane secretly released and killed nearby. Daryl and Glenn come to the realization that the dead can come back without previous exposure to walkers. Shane uses the search for Randall as a ploy to silence Rick, but the plan backfires and Rick is faced with killing Shane. Just minutes later, Shane reanimates as a walker and Carl shoots him.
Carl’s gunshot attracts a large horde of walkers; Rick and Carl take refuge in the barn. Rick instructs Carl to ignite the barn after drawing walkers inside in order to save both himself and Carl. In the ensuing battle, Jimmy and Patricia are killed, Andrea is left behind, and the RV is lost. Andrea survives on her own, and is later rescued by a hooded woman accompanied by chained, armless walkers. The survivors, consisting of Rick, Lori, Carl, Glenn, Daryl, Carol, T-Dog, Maggie, Beth, and Hershel, regroup on the highway, but are forced to make camp due to lack of gasoline. A frustrated Rick declares that “this isn’t a democracy any more” after revealing what Dr. Jenner told him—all of the survivors are infected. A large prison looms in a pan out of the final scene.
Taken from comicvine.com
After a series of incidents indicate that staying in the area isn’t the best idea, Rick began to take over as leader, insisting that they leave and find a safer place to live. Shane had fallen in love with Lori over the past few months, thinking Rick was dead and dealing with the apocalypse, and they had formed a fledgling relationship. When Rick returned, Shane lost both Lori and leadership of the group. He turned on Rick, believing that killing him was the only way to get back into the position he was in before Rick arrived. He lured Rick out into the forest to kill him, only to be killed by Carl, who had followed the men and seen Shane pull a gun on his father.
Team Grimes – The Original Survivors
With nothing left to keep them in the area, Rick and the group decided to find a safer place to live. With a group of thirteen, ( Glenn, Allen, Donna, Ben, Billy, Dale, Carol, Sophia, Andrea, Amy, Rick, Lori, and Carl), they crammed themselves into Dale’s RV and head out on the road. While scrounging for food through the winter, clearing cars from the road and checking any establishment for food, they acquired three new members to their group ( Tyreese, Julie, Chris) which causes the confines of the vehicle to quickly become more than uncomfortable. They came upon a gated community, and hope that the gates helped keep the area safe. They soon find this to be untrue, and are once again forced out onto the road.
Barely forging the long winter, and on their last cans of food and fumes of gas, the group came upon the remote farm of Hershel Greene, who welcomed the group into his home alongside his family and neighbors, ( Lacy, Arnold, Maggie, Billy, Rachel, Susie, Otis, and Patricia). Rick’s group eventually discovered that Hershel’s family believed the dead to be able to be cured in the future, and were housing the eldest zombified son, Shawn, in their barn. This difference in core beliefs caused the group to again separate, with some staying on the farm and some continuing down the road to look for yet another place to live.
The new rogues weren’t on the road long when they came upon what they believed to be a possible paradise. A nearby prison seemed to remain mostly untouched by the plague, save a few downed gates and fences. They quickly set to work, fixing the fencing and clearing out the prison of zombies, and discovered a handful of inmates had been surviving in the cafeteria, ( Dexter, Andrew, Axel, and Thomas). They reluctantly let the prisoners roam free amongst them, and invited the rest of the Greene family to come stay at the prison. After a series of murders, Thomas was revealed to be a psychopathic killer and was himself killed. A lone woman later came upon the prison by the name of Michonne, seemingly having survived alone using a katana and two armless, jawless walkers. The group works hard to search and expand the prison, planting a garden, utilizing a generator and trying to make a better life for themselves there.
One day they witnessed a helicopter crash in the surrounding forest, and Rick, Michonne, and Glenn left to investigate and offer help to the passengers. Upon arrival, the people had been taken by others, who left tracks in the opposite direction of the Prison. They decided to investigate further, and came upon the fortified town of Woodbury, where an egomaniacial man by the name of The Governor lorded over the occupants. Friendly at first, the Governor quickly resorted to performing unspeakable torture on the three to learn where they had come from. They eventually escaped, with Michonne taking revenge on him along the way, before making their way back to the prison.
When they returned to the prison, they discovered the fences to have been breached, and began to prepare for the likely coming attack from the citizens of Woodbury. They settled back into their routines, with Glenn and Maggie marrying, and Lori preparing to give birth, when they were finally attacked. The Woodbury citizens kill many of Rick’s group in the ensuing bloodbath, and the rest were scattered when they fled.
In a nearby deserted town, Rick took refuge with Carl, devastated by the loss of his wife and new baby. They soon met up with the remaining escapees from the prison, and decided to move on when a new group of survivors ( Abraham, Rosita, and Eugene) appeared and informed them that the entire plague could be stopped if they could get to Washington, D.C. A small contingent of the group diverted to Rick’s nearby sheriff station for ammo and supplies, picking up his neighbor Morgan on the way back. With Morgan now in tow, the small group discovered that the walkers were beginning to herd together, becoming more dangerous than ever.
Continuing on their path to the capitol, the group endured many hardships including encountering a tortured minister who had let his people die to save himself ( Gabriel), having to deal with one of the children being killed at the hands of another, and being attacked by cannibals who, much like the zombies, were intent on eating their flesh.
Reaching just outside of the capitol, the group was approached by a lone stranger (Aaron), who claimed to had been watching them for awhile and extended an invitation to come live in his safe community. Upon learning the truth about the non-existent cure to the plague, they decide to go with him. They were brought into a small community named Alexandria with impressive walls built around the outside. Inside, they were astonished to find friendly survivors who lived very close to the way things were before the apocalypse. As they settled in, suspicions arose in both groups, and Rick and Carl struggled to return to a ‘normal’ life.
The story is set to run in perpetuity, following how different groups of people would handle trying to survive in the complicated hell of a world overrun by zombies. Although the book revolves around a zombie apocalypse, the main focus of the book is human survival and character interaction and development. Whether held up in an enclosed town, the middle of the woods, or even a prison the question keeps arising “who can you trust when the world’s social structure breaks down?” The readers quickly learn, no character is safe from death or mutilation, even main characters. The story emotionally involves the reader as they experience the horrific events that could occur when people live in a world where the only person they could trust is themselves.
To date there are 4 different published formats which all compile issues of The Walking Dead. First there are 15 Volumes published in trade paperback format collecting 6 issues each. Another publication of 7 Hardcover Volumes collecting 12 issues each. A third publication of 3 Hardcovers volumes titled The Walking Dead Omnibus collecting 24 issues each. Finally, there is currently a large paperback volume titled The Walking Dead Compendium which collects issues #1-48.
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