Fans of “The Walking Dead” were in for a treat at this year’s New York Comic Con. Not only was there a panel featuring the show’s cast and main writer, but a booth dedicated to the apocalyptic thriller franchise was located in the heart of Comic Con’s chaotic showroom floor.
As the Season 3 premiere rolled in Sunday night (9 p.m. EST on AMC), New York Comic Con goers flocked to The Walking Dead booth to purchase everything from graphic novels to t-shirts.
“It worked out really well when the show premiered,” exhibitor David Andry said of the convention’s timing with the show’s season debut. “It built hype for the first season, and [since then] we’ve been pretty steady with how busy we are. It’s really nice that people come out and are excited about the show and the graphic novels.”
Andry, and avid graphic novel reader who has been working with “The Walking Dead” for three years, said he’s looking forward to see what the third season brings.
“Everybody at the booth loves the show as well,” he said. “We’re gonna try to watch it al together if we can get the booth to shut down.”
Robert Kirkman, the writer behind the graphic novel series, also oversees production of the television show to ensure that his vision translates from pages to screen.
“It has the same feel, even if the plot isn’t the same,” Andry said. “If you enjoy the graphic novel you’ll like the show.”
The plot differences between the books and the television series are significant enough to notice, but do not compromise the show overall, says another exhibitor for “The Walking Dead.”
“I feel like some of the situations are a little different,” said exhibitor Christine Pardo when asked which character translates best to television. ” It’s really hard to say because the relationships change a little bit. I think they translate well, but it will be interesting to see what happens.”
Whether it’s the show’s success or just the fact that word has spread about the graphic novels, this weekend’s sales prove that many are diving into “The Walking Dead” series. According to Pardo, the Compendium Volume 1 was the most popular book on their table. This hardcover collection contains the first eight volumes of the series.
“Only 1,000 copies [of the Compendium] were made,” she said. “So it’s kind of a special at the booth. “’Thief of Thieves’ has also sold a lot, possible from the popularity of ‘The Walking Dead.’
“Thief of Thieves” is another graphic novel series created by Kirkman which follows a rogue thief who quits the business and begins stealing from his fellow thieves.
“The Walking Dead” has seen a widespread success with its transition into television, but it is only one of many popular graphic novels that has gained a following with the comic-reading community. So which series should be adapted next for TV?
“I’m really excited about ‘Chew,’” Andry said, referring to the Eisner Award-winning series written by John Layman. “It’s been optioned by Showtime, and if that can get translated it’s going t o be amazing. It’s so funny and unique.”