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Robert Kirkman Issues Halfhearted Apology for Season 6 Finale: “We Weren’t Trying to Game the Audience…”

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Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last few months, you’re well aware of the backlash The Walking Dead creators and AMC have faced since that fateful night on Sunday, April 3rd, 2016; the fervid cries of unrest could be heard coming from the living rooms of millions of TWD fanboys and girls as TV screens faded to black, leaving us with the cliffhanger from hell for the next six months.

In what many fans have considered a ratings and revenue ploy by AMC, The Walking Dead‘s creative team has been furiously backing the decision to leave Season 6 on a cliffhanger, describing it as a logical conclusion to Rick’s “over confidence” arc – as if watching a beloved member of Rick’s group get bludgeoned to death wouldn’t have served the exact same purpose. Show runner Scott Gimple has even gone as far as saying that they weren’t trying to “fuck with fans.”

But now creator Robert Kirkman is stepping up to the plate, attempting to take a swing at getting fans back on the side of The Walking Dead. In the most recent issue of The Walking Dead comic book series, Kirkman took to the Letter Hacks section to explain his side of the story, and, well, he offered up a typical Kirkman response. Check out what Kirkman had to say:

Okay, the season 6 finale has certainly caused a fervor online. EVERYONE IS TALKING ABOUT IT. Some people love it. Some people are indifferent. Some people HATE it. We weren’t trying to game the audience, we weren’t trying to FORCE you to come back for season 7…. we hope you were always planning on doing that and still plan on doing that.

We did want you talk. And talk you are.

The speculation, the frustration, the possibilities, the theories… honestly, in my mind… that stuff is FUN. I honestly feel like that’s something fun for the fans to do during the break. Was it Spencer? Could it have been Morgan? What about Carol? Did Negan kill Jesus?! (Note, none of them were there… I’m not giving ANYTHING away.) I know people are angry over this, but that wasn’t our intent. The idea was that after 6 seasons of the show, we wanted to stay on your mind and give you somethin to talk about.

And think of it this way… a character you love and are going to miss is DEAD, and we gave you a few extra months to hope, to not grieve. Is there uncertainty? Yes. But that was kind of the idea.

But seriously. Everyone on TWD team wanted to do something cool. We wanted to do something different and we did it to change things up, get people excited and keep this show on your mind.

For some of you, that effort backfired and you’re angry. And for that I’m sorry. The only thing I can PROMISE you is that the season 7 premiere is going to be awesome. And when viewed as a two-part episode (the same way EVERY SEASON of Star Trek: The Next Generation ended with the first half of a two-part episode that was a cliffhanger…), it’s going to be a pretty awesome ride. And every minute of the season 6 finale was important and was setting something up that you probably won’t see coming.

It’s a cool episode… and remember… there’s a LOT more for Negan to do. Be afraid… be very afraid. And excited!

So, there you have it. Everyone at The Walking Dead just wanted to “do something cool” and not “game you.” And the episode was “cool,” so you shouldn’t really care, apparently.

Regardless, filming for Season 7 has begun, mostly behind closed doors for now, but rabid fans are already on the hunt for any hint to who died. We will be reporting all the latest The Walking Dead spoilers as soon as they become available.

Until then, sound off with your thoughts regarding Kirkman’s apology in the comments section below. Will fans accept the apology? You be the judge.

Sebastian C.

Sebastian C.

Sebastian is the lead host of The Walking Dead Enthusiasts Podcast. In his spare time, you can find him watching trashy reality television like Survivor and Big Brother.
Sebastian C.