Created on June 9, 2012 and written by
Category: Stephen Jondrew

WALKING DEAD IS A RIP OFF… or at least that’s what one reader says.

The other day I finished helping to launch our affiliate website WalkingtheWalkingDead.com. As a fan of both the comics and the TV series, I have found myself enjoying more and more a variety Zombie themed projects including comics and movies. While I find there is often a certain level of similarities between projects, I’ve always found there is also an extreme level of variation too.

The other day I received an email titled “Walking Dead Rip off” from someone named Alex Blaxhorn. Being that it had only been a few days since the launch of WalkingtheWalkingDead.com at first the subject line had me thinking that someone had ripped off the Walking Dead… of course, that wasn’t the case. Here is the email in its entirety.

Is The Walking Dead a Rip Off?

After finally catching up on The Walking Dead show on AMC, it seems unbelievable that no one takes them to task for lifting of other sources. The only mention so far has been the stealing of the opening sequence of 28 Days which was out before The Walking Dead. Of course, the title of the comic is the same as another comic that came out some ten years earlier, from Aircel Comics.

What is more strikingly apparent is the similarities to Deadworld. That series came out from Arrow Comics during the black and white explosion in the 1980s and had good sales during that time period. If the creators of The Walking Dead were zombie fans, they had to know about Deadworld which moved to Caliber Comics and had some 40 more issues in the 1990s, well before The Walking Dead ever came out.

Not having read the comic series, the similarities are only based on the TV show but it seems beyond just coincidence or story elements that deal with zombie stories in general.

In The Walking Dead, the group travels using a RV and in Deadworld, they used a school bus. One of the early scenes in both is two people going to raid a store for supplies and getting trapped by zombies.

In The Walking Dead, the group comes across a religious family on a farm who for some reason seem to be unaffected by the zombie menace. One of the group hooks up with the daughter of the religious leader. In Deadworld, the group comes across a religious family in a farmhouse who were unaffected by the zombie menace. One of the group hooks up with the daughter of the religious leader.

In The Walking Dead, the living gets through a group of zombies by rubbing zombie blood on themselves. In Deadworld, a character cut the skin off a zombie and wrapped himself up to get through the zombies. In both of them, zombies are stacked up and burned. In both stories, a little girl who has turned into a zombie has to be shot. In both of them, a character has to cut off his hand.

Towards the end of the first volume of the Caliber run, there is a group heading north and led by a guy named John. John is not a sheriff like Rick, but looks similiar as he always has a hat on. John hooks up with Stacey who becomes pregnant (ala Lori). .John is constantly challenged by another member of the group (ala Shane) and there is also the scene where one of the older guys gets bit and John has to shot him (ala Dale). Also, John has a son with the name of Carl (ala Carl). There’s talk that The Walking Dead comic series moves to a prison and in Deadworld, one of the guys who hooks up with John later is Clarence, the token black guy (ala T-Dog) and Clarence came from a prison.

At the end of last season’s show, a female character was shown wielding a sword and leading zombies chained. In Deadworld, there is a female character that also has zombies chained up in the same fashion and she will later become known as Tattoo who wields a sword all the time.

There’s been talk of next season bringing in a character called the Governor who apparently is the leader of a small town with military overtones. This sounds just like Moloch who has helicopters and military type soldiers and captures humans to build up his town. Moloch also uses humans versus zombies for sport.

Again, not sure exactly what is in the comic, just the TV show but if you read Deadworld, haven’t you already read The Walking Dead?

While at first Mr. Blaxhorn makes some points which seem valid, most of them are also missing a crucial level of substance. For example, in his comment comparing the Deadworld events to Hershel’s farm, I can’t remotely be convinced of the similarities. His point banks heavily on one of the Deadworld group members hooking up with the daughter of a religious leader and I’m fairly certain there is nothing unique about love-at-first-site-in-troubling-times (I refer you to Forrest Gump The Notebook Pearl Harbor any romantic comedy). In addition, unless I’m wrong, Hershel Greene is in no way a religious leader in the comic book or TV Series – he was simply a religious veterinarian. Last time I checked, there was no copyright on the idea of a religious farmer (although if one movie was to hold the rights to that idea, I’d suggest it be THE JERK).

Of course, I could sit here and tear apart his points one by one, but I have better things to do today; however, there is one point that had me literally laughing outloud — the hat comment. That’s right, I’m talking about “John is not a sheriff like Rick, but looks similiar as he always has a hat on.”

SO AM I UNDERSTANDING THIS CORRECTLY?!?! You are telling me that these two are similar because they share a hat. Alright, fine, I concede, the two are similar because they wear a hat. That being said, I’m still not angry because now this means that Rick can also be related to the following characters:

Indiana Jones
Indiana Jones

Jake and Elwood Blues
Blues Brothers

The Mad Hatter
The Mad Hatter


Ferris Bueller
Ferris Bueller

As I said, I could rip apart the rest of his points but I want to know what your thoughts are on this readers opinion. I’ve now read the email a few times and still can’t see any concrete similarities to convince me of his point – I only see a guy grasping at straws.


The Walking Dead   Gandalf   The Mad Hatter   Indiana Jones   Ferris Bueller   Blues Brothers   
5 Responses to “WALKING DEAD IS A RIP OFF”

  1. nothing


    06-09-2012 11:36 am

    WALKING DEAD IS A RIP OFF: WALKING DEAD IS A RIP OFF… or at least that’s what one reader says. The other day I f… http://t.co/G8jiafdW


  2. nothing

    Scott Carlton:

    07-06-2012 6:56 am

    Sure sounds like it has a lot of similar scenes.


    • nothing

      Scott Carlton:

      07-06-2012 6:58 am

      And you really discoutn all the same scenes with the hat business. Nice try at a deflection. Fanboy is an apt description.


  3. nothing

    Kirkman steals.:

    11-08-2013 10:26 am

    Episode of The Walking Dead S04E04 is a complete State of Decay Rip off, funny how the game was released 4 months prior to this episode being aired. The characters only needed backpacks to be exactly like opening with getting meds from animal clinic, expelling a member who killed sick person. zombies attacking from thick bushes, lame survivors who die. All this and he stole the Walking Dead idea on top of that to begin with from another writer.

    Kirkman is a uncreative thief who steals ideas from everybody.


  4. nothing


    12-03-2013 2:10 pm

    The Walking Dead is extremely derivative even down to character names. If I recall correctly, there are two brothers in the Deadworld series, lead characters, with the last name Blake. The Walking Dead has two brothers Brian and Philip Blake. With all the points that Alex made it seems highly unlikely that this was coincidence and not some form of plagiarism. I’m a fan of the WD tv series, but I have to admit it appears Kirkman is guilty of some literary theft.


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