How Walking Dead Spinoffs Changed Final Season Plan Explained By Showrunner

Warning: SPOILERS ahead for The Walking Dead series finale.The Walking Dead showrunner Angela Kang revealed how upcoming spinoffs for the zombie franchise changed the direction of the show’s final season. While The Walking Dead‘s flagship series came to an end earlier this month, the franchise is set to continue with three new spinoff shows following popular characters after the events of the original show. Two of these spinoffs were directly set up at the end of The Walking Dead‘s series finale, with Daryl leaving the Virginia communities to find Rick and Michonne, and the latter duo returning to the screen in scenes teasing their own upcoming series.


In an interview with AMC, Kang revealed that plans for The Walking Dead season 11 changed over time as new spinoff shows were announced. She explained how plans for the final season were influenced by knowing where characters would end up in their respective spinoffs, but that she wanted to make sure the series still had bookends while also leading into the franchise’s future. Check out Kang’s full statement below:

“We knew that the Daryl spinoff was going to happen essentially when we embarked on the season. The plans changed multiple times over the course of the season, for the spin-off as well as the series, just because it was a really odd time in our global history. The Maggie and Negan spin-off came about somewhere during the course of making the season. The Rick and Michonne spin-off was a late addition. The way that the spin-offs interacted with our storytelling is that we knew these are characters that live, and we’re going to try to close a chapter of their story here, but we have to leave a door open for the next story to come. That said, the attitude in general was like, ‘Let’s tell our story now and then the spin-offs will essentially take the handoff and go where they go.’ For Maggie and Negan, I always had a very clear idea of where that was going to land for a very long time — that predated the work on the spin-off. The stories were going where they were already going by the time some of these were taking shape.

Related: What The Walking Dead’s Final Episode Means For All Upcoming Spinoffs

Every Upcoming Walking Dead Spinoff Explained

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Kang’s revelation about how The Walking Dead season 11 was impacted by the spinoffs underscores how the series finale was truly a lead-in for the future of the franchise. That future begins in April with The Walking Dead: Dead City, a spinoff that sees Maggie and Negan exploring a post-apocalyptic New York City for unknown reasons. While details about the upcoming spinoff are sparse, audiences will be able to see Negan and Maggie’s relationship evolve after Maggie admitted she couldn’t forgive him for Glenn’s death during the main show’s series finale. A Dead City teaser trailer also indicates the pair will be facing down threats both zombie and human-related.

Following the Big Apple spinoff will be Daryl Dixon, which sees Daryl taken to France for unknown reasons, now trying to survive and find his way back home. Recent cast announcements indicate Daryl will be coming across a progressive religious group, getting close to one of their members, Isabelle, who he will team up with during his Paris adventures. Another spinoff, The Walking Dead: World Beyond, also hints at what Daryl will be dealing with overseas, as World Beyond ended with the revelation of faster, more aggressive Walkers existing in France. Kang’s words about the concept for Daryl Dixon changing over the course of The Walking Dead season 11’s production means viewers may see more ideas associated with the spinoff than what they know about so far.

The final spinoff to be announced was one focusing on Rick Grimes and Michonne, who had left the core series back in season 9 and season 10, respectively. The “epic love story” was teased at the very end of The Walking Dead‘s series finale, showing an armor-clad Michonne still searching for Rick, who is seen in a flashback antagonizing his captors, the CRM. The pair’s presence in the flagship series’ final episode underscore the concept for their spinoff, while also acting as the first foray into The Walking Dead‘s next chapter. While it’s unclear what kind of stories are set to be told in The Walking Dead spinoffs, Kang’s statement about changing the final season to accommodate for them is sure to be felt even more when the three new series debut next year.

Next: The Walking Dead’s New Rick & Michonne Show Is Better Than Movies

Source: AMC

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