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Like a particularly stubborn zombie, there’s a Walking Dead fan theory that simply refuses to die: The events of the bestselling comic and hit television series all take place in the mind of Rick Grimes, who never awoke from his coma.
It staggers to life every so often on a message board, or in a YouTube video, before disappearing, Sophia-like, into the wilderness of the Internet. However, when the theory reemerged last week, with the help of Uproxx, Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman was on hand to strike a killing blow to the head.
This fall has been particularly exceptional television adaptations: The Walking Dead season premiere pulled in more than 17 million viewers, while more than 8 million watched the first episode Gotham, making it Fox’s best fall drama debut in 14 years. More than 6 million raced to see The Flash pilot, giving The CW its highest ratings ever. About 5 million are regularly tuning in for Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., and nearly 3 million for the third season of Arrow.
It’s not limited to live-action series, either: 2 million people watch Teen Titans Go!, and more than 1 million tune in to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles on Nickelodeon.
On the big screen, all four feature films starring Marvel characters — X-Men: Days of Future Past, Guardians of the Galaxy, Captain America: The Winter Soldier and The Amazing Spider-Man 2 — each grossed more than $700 million each worldwide. So far, comic book movies have generated more than $3.8 billion dollars this year. While it’s unknown how many of those dollars are from repeat viewings, that’s still a lot of people.
If we’ve learned anything from The Walking Dead, it’s that during a zombie apocalypse, no nowhere — and no one — is safe. Not a gated community, a secluded farm, a prison, a fortified town or an abandoned factory. But what about a Zombie Fortification Cabin?
CNET spotted what Tiger Log Cabins touts as “the world’s first zombie proof log cabin,” designed to withstand any attack from the undead.
“Not only is the building strong and secure enough to stop any zombie from getting inside,” the description states, “but even zombie invaders were to breach the boundaries of your land, the design is intelligent enough to give you fantastic and safe vantage points to use any artillery you have whether it’s light or dark outside.”
During her three seasons as Andrea on The Walking Dead, Laurie Holden killed a lot of zombies, annoyed a lot of viewers and shot Daryl. However, now the actress has a new role, fighting a real-world threat: child sex trafficking.
ABC’s Nightline reported this week on Operation Underground Railroad, an organization founded by former CIA agent and Homeland Security investigator Tim Ballard that specializes in cases involving child sex trafficking. For a recent sting operation in Cartagena, Colombia — launched in cooperation with that country’s government — Ballard relied on “a ragtag group of volunteers” to help stage a bachelor party, with the goal of rescuing child prostitutes brought to the event and arresting the traffickers.
You wouldn’t think a company that sells dried spiced meat would want its products associated with decaying human flesh, but Slim Jim — “a leading brand of meat sticks” — has snapped into a partnership with AMC’s The Walking Dead that sees its Carne Asada strips temporarily renamed … “Carnage Asada.” Get it?
“Slim Jim’s bold flavor pairs perfectly with AMC and The Walking Dead,” Jill Dexter, Slim Jim’s brand director, says in a statement. “In a post-apocalyptic world or in your living room, it’s important to be prepared with the right snack, and our Carnage Asada Steakhouse is just that.”
Although the second part of Bad Lip Reading’s sendup of The Walking Dead Season 4 doesn’t contain a breakout hit like “Carl Poppa,” which is likely burning up Billboard’s rap chart at this very moment, it does include a few gems, including Rick and Daryl’s dispute about the glue police, Tyreese’s song for Carol, Rick and Carl’s heartwarming drug talk, and Hershel’s apparent love for Prince (because, really, who doesn’t like Prince?).
However, if that still leaves you yearning for more of the “La Jiggy Jar Jar Doo,” you’re in luck: BLP has put together a lyric video from “Carl Poppa.” You can watch both below.
Clementine, the pint-sized hero of the Walking Dead video game, is getting her own action figure, it was revealed Sunday during the Telltale Games panel at New York Comic Con. The figure, from McFarlane Toys, Skybound Entertainment and Telltale, will come in two versions — clean and blood-splattered. Each variety comes with with backpack, pistol and hammer.
Introduced in the game’s first season as a secondary character, 11-year-old Clem becomes the playable protagonist in Season 2. According to Skybound, “she is probably the figure we get asked to make the most often.”
To celebrate the Season 5 premiere of The Walking Dead on Sunday, comiXology is holding an apocalypse-scale sale on the comic series created by Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore and Charlie Adlard.
Through Oct. 13, digital editions of the first 126 issues are available for just 99 cents each — the three specials focusing on the Governor, Michonne and Tyrese, too. If you prefer to devour the series in larger chunks, the collections are also discounted, with the majority of the volumes priced at $5.99.
For weeks fans of The Walking Dead have been parsing quotes from the producers and stars of the hit AMC series, searching for clues as to which characters won’t survive the upcoming fifth season. However, despite their diligence, it appears a significant casualty has already slipped by them.
When The Walking Dead returns Oct. 12, it will be without one of its fixtures since Season 2: the kiwi-green Hyundai Tuscon found by Rick Grimes & Co. on the gridlocked highway after they left Atlanta in hopes of reaching Fort Benning. It quickly became the survivors’ most frequently used vehicle, participating in supply runs and the search for Sophia, herding walkers and fleeing Hershel’s overrun farm (the Hyundai even received its own backstory, in the web series The Oath).
Some of the Bad Lip Reading videos can drag on a bit, like one of those Saturday Night Live sketches that never seems to end, but this take on the fourth season of The Walking Dead — Part 1, we’re told — is inspired, not for the Prison fight about apples and dolphins, or Beth’s threat against Anthony the turtle, but for the debut of Carl Grimes, sticky beat-layin’ pop sensation.
Although I’m a little disappointed we weren’t treated to footage of Carl devouring a Sam’s Club-sized can of chocolate pudding, the video for his single “Carl Poppa (La Jiggy Jar Jar Doo)” will likely be in heavy rotation on MTV, or wherever it is music videos are played nowadays.
And if you don’t care for it, that’s likely because, in the immortal misread words of Carl Grimes, “You can NOT handle the flow, son!”
Earlier this year a Philadelphia microbrewery paid tribute to The Walking Dead with a beer containing smoked goat brains, but as difficult as it is to believe, that now pales in comparison — and in potential grossness — to what’s been cooked up.
London’s Metro reports that Fox TV U.K. has teamed with creative director Miss Cakehead and Chef James Tomlinson from Mess London to develop a hamburger that … tastes like human flesh. To promote the upcoming fifth season of The Walking Dead, and its Terminus storyline, of course.
There are a lot of products offered on Etsy that likely would be frowned upon by most film studios, television networks and publishers — posters, jewelry, clothing, toys, etc., featuring properties protected by trademark and copyright. However, there’s something wonderfully charming about Handmade Stuffs‘ off-brand plushes based on well-known fictional characters.
Sure, the stuffed creations are plenty cute in and of themselves, but the imaginative (and hopefully non-infringing!) names are what really sell them. Take, for instance, “Cuddly Plush Alien Tree” (“This adorable botanical extraterrestrial is ready to guard the galaxy with you!”), or the sold-out “Cuddly Plush Furious Director” (“He may only have one eye, but he’ll always be on the lookout for bad guys!”)
Passings | Customers and family mourn the passing of Steve Koch, longtime owner of Comic Headquarters in St. Louis, who died Aug. 31 of a suspected heart attack. He was 55. “He knew the true value of a comic book was in the story and the art, not as it being a collectible,” said his wife Carla, whom he introduced to comics with a copy of X-Men #1. Koch’s customers praised him for running a store that was welcoming to everyone, no matter what their tastes; some have been shopping there since they were children. [Riverfront Times]
Crime | Police in Lexington, Kentucky, believe the man who robbed a local comics and hobby shop D20 Hobbies late last month is also behind three other robberies. In all cases, the robber wore a clown mask and indicated he had a weapon but didn’t show one. D20 owner James Risner was puzzled at first as to why anyone would rob a comic shop, but he speculates the thief didn’t realize his business had taken over from the previous tenant of the site, a Quick Cash store. “I guess he figured we had a lot of money,” Risner said. “Thankfully we didn’t have that much.” [Lex18.com]
AMC’s hit adaptation of The Walking Dead differs in numerous ways from the source material, but perhaps most significantly in introduction of Daryl Dixon, the fan-favorite character played by Norman Reedus. “Fan-favorite” is a term frequently overused, but here it’s entirely appropriate, as Daryl devotees are legion, dedicated and, it turns out, fairly artistic.
And now Reedus is collecting more than 100 pieces of that fan work — drawings, sketches, tattoos, mosaics, etc. — in a book titled Thanks For All the Niceness, to be published Oct. 31 by his imprint Big Bald Book. A “significant portion” of the proceeds will be donated to The Bachmann Strauss Dystonia and Parkinson Foundation.
Conventions | Attendance at the second annual Salt Lake Comic Con was estimated at between 120,000 and 130,000, putting it on a par with the big shows like Comic-Con International in San Diego and New York Comic Con. Even better, Stan Lee proclaimed it “the greatest comic con in the world” (but he probably says that to all the shows). [The Salt Lake Tribune]
Conventions | The scale of the first Las Cruces [New Mexico] Comic Con was considerably smaller, with expected attendance of 3,000 to 5,000, but organizers were pleased with the event, which featured a Yu-Gi-Oh! tournament, a Comic Strip Burlesque show, and appearances by Jim Steranko, Power Rangers stuntman Jason Ybarra, and the 1966 Batmobile. [Las Cruces Sun-News]