Transmedia Narratives and The Walking Dead

the-walking-dead-season-3-poster-full-570x844You’d be hard-pressed to find an university student who hasn’t watched, read or at least heard of The Walking Dead. A big reason is because The Walking Dead is a transmedia narrative, its a text which isn’t tied to any one channel, it tells a single story over multiple mediums.

So you’ve got the cash cow, the money-maker of the franchise, the television show which will be well into Season 6 by October.

Andrew-Lincoln-and-Norman-Reedus-in-The-Walking-Dead-season-5-episode-1Aside from that theres the comic book series the show is based on, which started in 2003 and is still going strong.

the-walking-dead-comic-book-cover-01A lesser known and more recent addition to The Walking Dead franchise is definitely the video game series. Developers Telltale Games, with overwhelmingly positive reception is currently working on a third installment to the video game series.

the-walking-dead-season-two-trailer-1410503580It’s through these three mediums that an audience can immerse themselves within The Walking Dead universe. These different platforms present different instances of storytelling, such as current television episodes following policeman Rick Grimes compared to the first video game installment showing The Walking Dead universe through the eyes of convicted murderer Lee Everett.

These multiple narratives allow for a more cohesive whole, it allows significantly more interaction between audiences and creates many more marketing opportunities as well.

amc 2012, The Walking Dead, image,, viewed May 2015 < > 2012, The Walking Dead Episode 1, image,, viewed May 2015 < > 2015, image, viewed May 2015 < >


3 thoughts on “Transmedia Narratives and The Walking Dead

  1. A nice fun little post here Alan. I hadn’t had realised that the critically acclaimed show, the Walking Dead, was based off the comic series. I thought it was vice versa!

    It goes to show how comic books have really effectively made the jump between platforms, and unlike book to film, which follows the same story, comic book to multi-media platforms explores that “world” and its characters, sometimes even totally new ones depending on the story, like most works by Marvel or DC.

    Thanks to the popularity of cinema, those comics are given new attention by the younger audience, and movie adaptions are able to influence the creation of original games, additional spin off cartoons, TV series, comics, books, etc.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. As a fan of The Walking Dead, I loved that you used this as your example for transmedia narratives. The Walking Dead now can reach multiple demographics of potential audience while developing new ways for the existing one to comprehend the story. An enthusiasm clearly created by the comic books and the televised episodes, but that is also driven by a vast transmedia presence that offers the TV viewer an ever more innovative narrative experience.Today, using multi-platform engagement has proven to be an essential branding strategy and creative outlet, solidifying its place as the rapidly growing future of new media. Awesome text post, I look forward to reading more of your work!

    Liked by 1 person

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