Well, The Walking Dead has been back for a few weeks now, and two things about it remain very very true: 1. It’s very popular, and 2. People love to kvetch about it. Yes, people still have some serious problems with the show, so let’s maybe investigate a few general ways the show’s producers could deal with the criticism.
Inject Some Levity
William Shakespeare, the greatest writer in the history of the English language, knew that even his most intense dramas needed some humor. “Macbeth” isn’t such a violent, grim rumination on fate and our places in the great cosmic universe if it doesn’t have a few moments of levity to juxtapose the rest of the darkness. The Walking Dead is so wall-to-wall bleak, it just makes it tiring.
Stay Away From the Comics’ Story
The Walking Dead isn’t Game of Thrones. The zombie show’s took some big detours from the storyline laid down by its source material almost immediately, and that was one of the show’s strengths. Readers and viewers alike could enjoy both versions for what each was. But The Walking Dead‘s sudden veer into comic territory seems odd, especially when you consider that the show’s fifth season, widely regarded as its best, had almost nothing to do with the comics. Hell, the show’s most beloved character (Daryl) never existed in the comics, so its instinct to do its own thing is maybe the right one.
No More Long Seasons
The Walking Dead has trouble moving the plot forward when it’s got a season of regular length (Alexandria comes to mind) but when it does this whole “Season plus a half” thing, it’s even more egregious (Negan, man. F’n Negan…). So maybe the show should just stick to a nice standard 12 episodes.
Have the Characters Acknowledge That Rick is Stupid
Rick is dumb. His plans are bad, and they go badly all the time. But no one ever seems to realize this on the show, which is incredibly frustrating, because literally everyone realizes it in real life. So please Walking Dead, stop gaslighting us; have the show acknowledge that Rick is dumb and that we’re not all crazy.
Let Characters Live for a While
Sure, until this recent round of butchery, things had been kind of quiet in terms of character deaths. This show, however, still has a long, long legacy of killing off characters as quickly as it can. For God’s sake, man; LET THEM LIVE! Let us establish some bonds, so that it matters more when you then revert to bloodthirstiness.
But Also Cut the Fat
Some of these characters are duds, and the show would be stronger without them. I am talking about, of course, Rick and Carl.
Move the Plot Forward
Please, God, no more stalling when it comes to the plot. Just… DO SOMETHING! Don’t hang around the prison forever, or follow the Governor as he does a bunch of stuff we don’t care about, or make us wait months to find out who dies by Negen’s bat, and then have that episode be the clunkiest, slowest episode in years. We deserve better!
Boy oh boy, it sure would be nice if The Walking Dead could pull some of these off… What do you think would be the best way to bring this show back to life? Let us know on Twitter @Smosh!