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It's almost hard to believe, but AMC's The Walking Dead is currently in the midst of its whopping eighth season on the air. The series has continued to score massive numbers every week, with the overall property showing no signs of slowing down. While most fans are relieved to hear that they'll be plenty more zombies and character deaths in the future, there is one overarching question that has yet to be revealed: what caused the infection that ended the world? After the years of comic book installments and TV episodes, we still haven't the slightest idea about what caused the apocalypse. Now Robert Kirkman has revealed when he'll finally open up about the truth, saying:
It looks like everyone should settle in for a long wait, because Robert Kirkman isn't planning on revealing how the apocalypse started for a very long time. Both the TV series and the comics are still going strong, so Kirkman's plan to reveal the information years after the franchise ends is going to be put on hold indefinitely. Sorry, Walking Dead fans.
Robert Kirkman's comments come to us from a recent Q & A he did on Tumblr, similar to a Reddit AMA. He was asked when the infection would be explained, and revealed how very little it really has to do with the storytelling currently being explored in print and video. The reality of the apocalypse is what's important, and knowing the cause isn't going to change how the survivors are attempting to stay alive after the world ended.
The science behind the virus was only very briefly explored in The Walking Dead Season 1, and not at all in its spinoff Fear The Walking Dead. Toward the end of the first season, the survivors reached the local CDC. It's there where they find lone survivor Edwin Jenner, who reveals some of the details about the mysterious illness. Unfortunately, he ends up killing himself when he sets the underground facility to self-destruct, with Atlanta survivor Jacqui staying behind to die with him.
Robert Kirkman obviously have an end game planned for The Walking Dead comics, and has no doubt already decided upon why the apocalypse started. But he's understandably not going to share that information, especially with no end in sight for the massively popular franchise. Instead he'll reveal the information after the fact, similar to what J.K. Rowling did with Dumbledore's sexuality in the Harry Potter franchise.