The Walking Dead has borrowed somewhat more liberally from its source material than adaptations like Game of Thrones, though there always remains a possibility of the AMC drama catching up to, even overtaking writer and creator Robert Kirkman’s work. The live-action Walking Dead has covered roughly 2/3 of the comics over six seasons, so is Kirkman worried about it catching up?

You’re warned of some minor Walking Dead spoilers from here on out, but the sixth season finale cliffhanger took us right into the events of the Walking Dead comic’s 100th issue, a landmark turning point for either series, the latter of which stands at 154 issues as of May 2016. That’s still quite a head start on AMC, given the monthly rate with which Kirkman churns out comics, versus years between Game of Thrones books, though Kirkman nonetheless addressed concerns in the “Letter Hacks” section:

I can see how going from #75 to #100 in eight episodes may cause some concern. But the show does double back on the comic from time to time, like presenting the Billy and Ben plot in a new way. Plus, we’re still 54 issues ahead … or really, 54 and a half, since the cliffhanger interrupted the events of #100 …

Yeah, look at it this way … it took us 6 seasons to get to 100. It won’t take us 6 years to get to 200 and that will take us to season … TWELVE. And we’ll still be ahead of the show at that point.

And if the show is still going strong at season 12 … well, that would be about the most amazing thing ever … so we’ll all be too busy celebrating to worry about anything.

It’s at least worth noting that the AMC rendition has sped certain arcs up considerably, spending six Season 1 episodes camping (vs. six issues in the comic), the entirety of Season 2 at Hershel’s farm (another six issues), while the books spent close to fifty issues at the prison, compared with the series’ 24 episodes (Season 3 to mid-Season 4).

It’s also difficult to say where AMC practically believes an end to The Walking Dead must lies, given vague comments of keeping the series as ongoing as the books. We’ll see how far into the books Season 7 delves, but should The Walking Dead start thinking about further deviations?

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