For the tenth anniversary of The Walking Dead , issue one will be reprinted with Tony Moore's art fully coloured.
Robert Kirkman always said you'll know when he's sold out because you'll see that on the shelves, so he's calls himself a sellout today.
Robert Kirk met Image publisher Eric Stephenson at a BBQ and loved his Extreme work, Stephenson is embarrassed by Kodiak and Dash references and wants to put it behind him.
Kirkman worked on Superpatriot and Tech Jacket was his first pitch, pitched the same time as Invincible.
Walking Dead was pitched several times, it was originally Dead Planet with Michonne. Sci fi based, Image turned it down. He jokes he might go back to it with "more zombies".
The original WD pitch had Rick forming an army and taking the earth back, he feels he's moving in to this phase now, he has a roadmap for "years ahead" visiting more pockets of civilisation and eventual conflict. Battles are planned and have been planned like a season of a TV show. He originally planned for the prison at the start of the series to be a high school.
Has anything changed since the show?
Are there characters, you would have killed earlier or kept longer?"
Kirkman jokes that Rick dies in the next issue, that Glenn was supposed to die in issue 75, and that he was always under threat. Sophia shouldn't have lasted as long, although she's now safe for the time being.
Kirkman: The freedom I have is unprecendented
Stephenson: Sometimes I'll advise and say why are you doing this, maybe do it differently and Robs like 'fuck you' but I don't know what's in his head.
Kirkman told Saga creator Brian K Vaughn that forty pages would never work out, and he glibly replied "I think it will"
Kirkman: People care about our books more than they care about others.
Kirkman: All out war, its gonna be cool, I dunno man whttaya want from me?
"When's the last time you've shaved?"
Kirkman: Once a year to freak my kids out I shave it off and jump out at them, no one want to see this (points to face) without hair.
Kirkman: Negan was supposed to die 3 issues after 100, but I love writing him, he will get it eventually.
Stephenson says he knows how Negan will die
Issue 103, was going to arrive to the hilltop with a cardboard box, when he opens it it's Negans head, he gives it to Maggie as a present – these plans were scrapped
Thief Of Thieves, will there be a NYCC hardcover?
How much creative input do you have?
Kirkman: The main mechanics and plot is plotted pretty far in advance, I have a pretty big plan/document/bible
Any updates of the TV show?
Kirkman: He's hoping for concrete news soon. TV is quite fickle and Walking Dead took four years, so be patient.
Who's your favourite protagonist?
Kirkman: I don't play favourites, I'm very fond of Angela, but I usually kill the people I love.
How much influence do you have on the Walking Dead TV show?
Kirkman: I've never tested my voice but I'm sure I could get things done….everyone is in to the same stuff and working to tell the best story…I feel like I'm being spoiled…everyone does a good job
"I was playing with peoples expectations, but I knew Glen was going to get it" "it was supposed to play to people expectation"
"one of the most fun things has been watching Carl develop and change"
"35 is the right age to read Walking Dead" "i'm horrified when people come up and say their 7 year old reads it" "if your kid grows up to be serial killer it's on you"
Back to basics this year. issue 105 is a jumping on point, we have Eve's pregnancy, a new threat on the horizon setting the stage for next year starting in 108. His mother becomes a villain.
Can you talk about the obvious gay overtones in Walking Dead?
My relationship with Norman Reedus is completely platonic…..For now.
On All Out War
To do a story this big, we need other inkers, I was open to it, it's been a long time trying to work out who to use.
Will Walking Dead have a happy ending
I know how it will end, and at what point it will wind down, there's a lot of story to go… It's going to be a while, there's not going to be a 700 when I'm dead, I got plans…