Where is the next Walking Dead?

by Mike W

walkingdead203-shaned-630x420-300x200 Where is the next Walking Dead?The Walking Dead comics are a true cultural phenomenon. The show on AMC television is in its tenth session and has been the highest-rated cable television show on Sunday nights for as long I can remember.  In fact, the show has expanded to spin-off shows such as Fear the Walking Dead and rumors of spin-off movies with other lead characters. Not to mention, the brand itself has expanded to action figures, video games, and other merchandise memorabilia.

 

I am not sure what the future holds for it on TV, as the comic series came to an abrupt ending last year. I can say, I was not there for the beginning of it, but definitely made sure to stick it out to the end. As tempting as it is, I will be sure not to spoil anyone on the ending. With that, for comic fans and speculators, where is the next Walking Dead comic? Suspicions are high in the speculating world, but there is no definite choice. Yes, comics such as Invincible (also created by Kirkman), Y: the Last Man, The Boys, and Umbrella Academy are excellent choices, but I am looking at a comic that has not received the option treatment. I believe that choice is Saga.

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Saga:

Saga is a space opera/sci-fi fantasy drama series that is heavily influenced by the worldwide popular franchise, Star Wars. The series is written by Brian K. Vaughn. To date, the series has produced 54 issues and is halfway through the completion, per Vaughn. The Walking Dead comic series concluded with 193 issues in July 2019, starting all the way back in 2003.

Similarities:

Both are created by the same publisher, Image Comics. Both premiere issues started with low print runs. When I mean low print runs, nowadays, new comics coming out having large print runs like 100,000. For example, Outcast, also done by Image Comics had a print run for the first issue of over 100,000.  The Walking Dead had an estimated print run of 6,000 to 7,300, while Saga had a print run of about 37,000. Both writers, Robert Kirkman and Brian K. Vaughn had prior success with previous comic book series, before starting their respective series. Kirkman created the series, Invincible, which also has a great fan base and has been optioned by Amazon. While Vaughn had success with another series he wrote, Y: The Last Man, which has also been optioned for development.

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Both comic series, earlier on, gained readership as it got more popular with fans. With The Walking Dead, issue #1 started with 6,000 sales and ballooned to 70,000 by issue #114. The gain of readership is about 1200% from issue #1 to #114! With Saga, it followed the same pattern, with 37,000 sales on issue #1 and continued strong through issue #13 with 55,000, which equals almost a 50% gain in readership.

Differences:

As close as these two series are, there are many differences between them. The Walking Dead started in 2003, almost 10 years earlier than Saga. The series’ plot is about people surviving a zombie apocalypse. Meanwhile, Saga is a fantasy space drama with robots and animals. Similar to Star Wars, as the main characters travel with a spaceship and encounter many different forms of life. To my knowledge, and I did research a little, it does not appear that the Walking Dead # 1 issue had multiple printings for the premiere issue. I do not mean those reprints of reprints several years later. Whereas, Saga #1 has multiple printings, reaching as far as a 5th print.

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Only time will tell if Saga will reach the level of The Walking Dead. Raw sales for Saga #1 are easily hitting over $100. So whenever this series gets the option treatment, whether it is a movie or television show, the stock of this book will skyrocket.

I am a fan of both series and my hopes for Saga is that it can be developed into a television show. I can imagine the budget would be tremendous with all the special and visual effects needing to be done. As for The Walking Dead, it is an end to an unbelievable comic series, that has coincided with an above-average television series. Ten seasons is no joke, so you have to give credit where credit is due. Otherwise, please let me know what you think; if you agree or disagree with what I have explained.

Stay safe and happy hunting!

 

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8 comments

Daniel Genest April 28, 2020 - 9:48 am

First let me say that Walking Dead 1 has been rumored to have 2 different printings because it was written FOR MATURE READERS on the cover….in white on some copies AND in black on others.But it seems both were done at the same time be that at the beginning or later on in the print run.Also let me say that in collectors/investors/speculators circles,mainly at CBSMT G+ (Which no longer exist there as G+ closed doors) Saga has been talked NUMEROUS times as an hopefull heir to Walking Dead 1 legacy as an uber collectible…….but it won’t happen?Why?Well Walking Dead 1 was a Perfect Storm happening……

1st Walking Dead 1 began as a VERY low print run book (Between 7000 and 8000).Saga 1 has 5 prints and it’s first print run was over 35 000 copies done (Not counting those 4 other prints) which makes that book at least 5 times more plentifull than Walking Dead 1 !!!!!

2nd Walking Dead 1 has grown as a collectible organically (Meaning that at the time there wasn’t THAT much sites/social medias groups about comics and less so about speculation).When the Walking Dead TV show began in 2010 Walking Dead 1 was ALREADY a 300$ value book.In a year it doubled up to 600$ then 750$ and the rest is history.

3rd Saga 1 came RIGHT at a time when EVERYBODY and their mother were trying to find the NEXT Walking Dead 1.There were WAY more sites talking about investing/speculating in comic book+Marvel had made it big in movies and helped start the investors/speculators craze in their books which motivated investors/speculators trying to find books that might go up be that be Marvel/DC or independants book.Image began printing more and more #1’s of new series and way more people wanted to get that fabled next Walking Dead 1 and where that book might be???? The first idea a lot of people had was to buy ANY Image #1’s and try to hit payday later on as Image books were done in lesser quantities than most Marvel/DC books.I know a few guys that have 10 or more copies of that book (Saga 1).I know NOBODY who had more than 1 to 2 copies of Walking Dead 1 when it came out.In fact I don’t know anybody who owned 1 beside a friend of mine….and he bought it when Walking Dead was on it’s 30th book. IF you ask people if they own Walking Dead 1 most wish they had bought it.When you ask about Saga 1 a LOT more people own 1 or way more.I didn’t had one because I took a few years off from Comics.I didn’t saw Batman 1 (New 52) and Saga 1 when it came out so didn’t bought any.When I came back to the comic book world and saw I missed those 2 books I was SO angry at myself.IF I would have been there at the time I can say without a doubt that after seeing how Brian K. Vaughn made a smash it with Y the Last Man AND Snyder’s run on Detective Comics+those 2 titles (Saga and Batman) stellar artists….well I would have bought AT LEAST copies of each and would have CERTAINLY toyed with the idea of buying 100 copies of Batman 1 to get that 1:100 variant for my collection.Also it was the FIRST Batman 1 main title #1 since 1940+great artist+great writer and well it’S Batman!! Batman 1 WAS another Perfect Storm book albeit a lesser one because we knew the print erun would be HUGE as it was a Batman 1 and people would buy 100 or more copies to get their 1:25 and 1:100 variants.Granted Batman 1 camme down quite a bit…….but it WAS a HUGE print run when you look at Walking Dead 1 or EVEN Saga 1 print runs.

4th and not the least Saga 1 has been rumored on and off as a tv show or movie a few times since 2012.Each time Saga 1 became more and more costlier.At it’s apex Saga 1 has been selling quite a few times at 500$+ in CGC 9.8.Right now it’s selling in the 300-350$ range.I have no doubts that if a TV/movie adaptation came to be it very well might go up to it’s previous 500$ and EVEN go up to 1000$….but it will eventually go down to 500-750$ within a few months to a year TOP.Why? Because hoarders will THEN get their copies on EBay and various other venues to finally cash in big time!!!

Walking Dead 1 was kind of an UBER Perfect Storm,a once in a lifetime happening.Great Artist (s) (Tony Moore was more akin to some of Marvel/DC books while Charlie Adlard was more akin to the mood we needed for an horror book as he showned in the X-Files comic a few years before)+great writer(Battle Pope which made people took notice but Invincible was THE book that put him first on the map) AND VERY low print run+organic collectible(It grew in value over time,meaning that it took a few years to get more and more valuable)+ 2010 TV show that came out right after the beginning of the Marvel Cinematic Universe Boom that made people aware that Marvel/DC weren’t the ONLY publisher that had quality titles in thir roaster! That 2210 TV show was what made Walking Dead 1 explode in value in a year.

I don’t know if we will EVER see ANOTHER Walking Dead 1.Maybe,maybe not.But one thing for sure it hasn’t seen print yet.At least not in ANY book printed after it.It will take time and might happen when people will do as they did in the 80’s and 90’s with the Black and White Implosion AND overprinted books from those 90’s when I NEVER saw SO many books going on the racks with COLLECTORS FIRST ISSUE or the like printed ON the cover!!! Speculators/Investors sites will have to be very few to have another chance at the next Walking Dead 1 as this book came to be what it was/is now because it took people by surprise!!!!! ANd in the market we live in right now……there’s not any surprises big enough to give us a chance at that fabled next Walking Dead ! !!!!!!

Reply
Mike W May 2, 2020 - 12:27 am

Daniel, you are right on point man. The Walking Dead will be a spectacle that will not be seen in comics for a very long time. Especially, with how publishers are pumping out large numbers for premiere issues.

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Richard Cly May 1, 2020 - 7:41 pm

Definitely agree with everything u have said! I love and collect both of these series. They are just great comics and very entertaining.

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Mike W May 2, 2020 - 12:27 am

Did you finish reading the Walking Dead?

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bob brown May 4, 2020 - 11:41 am

last of us #1 has best chance ive seen to hit walking dead #1 level. hbo doesnt mess around with there shows, and with game of thrones over and westworld with only 1 season left. they need a new monster series. and this property in the hands of director of Chernobyl series, has a real chance. also print run is like 7k

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Mike W May 7, 2020 - 6:38 pm

The Last of Us does have some media exposure. It is already a game that people, but maybe people want to get hooked on a different type of genre?

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J May 8, 2020 - 4:02 pm

I used to work at a small publisher doing scans of some image books in those early days of digital readers.. there was unclaimed copy of of walking dead #1 sitting on my desk for MONTHS until I finally let a co-worker take it… oh well.

Reply
Mike W May 9, 2020 - 4:40 pm

Man…… that is rough…. I guess you have learned your lesson on that. In your opinion, where is the next The Walking Dead?

Reply

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