Last week, the UPROXX overlords were all, “Hey, you wanna go to a ‘Walking Dead’ panel with Robert Kirkman?” And I was like, “Yeah!” — mostly because I wanted to hear from the creator of the comic-turned-hit-zombie-show, but partly because I leave my apartment once every three weeks and I enjoy the taste of fresh air.
On Friday evening, Kirkman and “Talking Dead” host/nerd poster boy Chris Hardwicke addressed a small but fervent crowd at New York City’s Re:Mix Lab, a cozy space in Chelsea Market sponsored by the Hyundai Veloster. And while the corporate sponsorship was prevalent, it didn’t damper the Comic-Con feeling to the proceedings: as I waited in line to gain entry, the conversations around me were all about DC Comics and Arkham City and various podcasts. Facial hair was prevalent. Many of the fans looked like they’d recently exited a goth phase.
Kirkman and Hardwicke were late to the panel, so an emcee got onstage to kill some time. He promised a “world premiere” trailer for Season 2, which seemed odd, since Season 2 had premiered the previous weekend. Indeed, the “trailer” was just a couple minutes of the excellent highway set piece that opened the season, but the crowd still reacted warmly to the various head-stabbings. Afterward, the emcee was sheepish about showing ”an exclusive trailer of something you saw last Sunday.”
When Hardwicke and Kirkman finally showed up, they were hustled onstage without an introduction — not that they needed one. The audience erupted in cheers, and Hardwicke — whom I’ve never particularly liked on TV — gamely bantered with the crowd about the vast array of facial hair in the audience. The son of a bitch was engaging and funny, much to my chagrin. I resorted to noting that his legs are insanely skinny. Like a newborn fawn’s.
When Hardwicke finally engaged Kirkman about The Walking Dead, most of the talk was about the comic (with issue 90 looming) rather than the TV show, largely because that story is further along. Indeed Kirkman revealed that he knew where the story would be at issue 100, and had generally sketched out to issue 150, with no plans of ending the comic. “I can’t stop. I’m addicted,” he said.
“What else can you do to Rick Grimes?” asked Hardwicke.
Kirkman: “There’s a list.”