Robert Kirkman is in a fairly odd position with The Walking Dead. He's the creator of the comic series that was turned into a TV series back in 2010. He's also an executive producer, which means he has been a part of the creation of the show for some time, and even is a part of the writers room. Speaking in a recent profile with a bunch of genre producers over at The Hollywood Reporter, The Walking Dead's Robert Kirkman explained how he had to get used to getting flack from people on the series who may or may have not liked certain facets of his comic creations. Per Kirkman:
It's a weird process on Walking Dead because we have a full writing staff and a writer's room, and they are working on things, but I'm an executive producer. I'm there. So, I'm actively participating in changing material that I wrote. Which is really weird. But it's fun, I guess. My favorite thing is, early in seasons I was in the writer's room full time, and we would be around the room and they would kind of forget, you know. And so we'd just be sitting there and they'd be like, 'Yeah, we're getting to that one thing in the comics, but that didn't really work, I wasn't... oooohh. Robert, hey.' And so I had to get used to that, which was... fun.
It's a weird position to be in. A lot of times when writers' works are adapted for TV or film, they aren't involved with the production in such an intimate way. (Possibly because some writers have trouble dealing with changes that are being made to plots and characters.) The case is different with Robert Kirkman, who is pretty involved with the AMC series that brought his characters to life. In addition to serving as an executive producer on the show, he's also written actual episodes of the series for the production. He's been so involved that people apparently kept forgetting that he was in the room when they talked about issues they had with the series early on.
Every week someone comes up with a brilliant idea of Rick Grimes is in a coma, and this is all a dream. I love it because someone comes at it like it's a new idea. I love the fan interaction. Being able to decipher that feedback, to see what people are saying, is a gift.
While working on a TV show is not always fun and games, it seems the prolific comics writer and The Walking Dead and Fear The Walking Dead producer has had a great TV experience so far. To catch his work back in action, tune in to The Walking Dead when it hits the schedule this October. We'll keep you updated if and when Fear The Walking Dead adds a renewal order, as well.