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Red Right Hand: DEAR FRANK
*He is not a secret agent. Not at all.



In the virtual circles (and some real ones) I travel, it's become "All The Rage" to opine on The Walking Dead, especially given the recent rumor that Frank Darabont, having let go of the writing staff, wants to go "commando" with Season Two and have no writing staff. (UPDATE: Okay, probably not.)

As Shawna pointed out, I have some thoughts on The Walking Dead. You can see some of my story-related thoughts over in her two-part Walking Dead commentary. You really should have a look, her thoughts are well-reasoned indeed, even if I don't agree with all of them.

Here are some not-so-story related thoughts.
  • Dear Frank, if you're really intent on mimicking the British way of things (i.e. showrunner and freelancers), you better damn well have a read of The Writer's Tale by Russell T. Davies and get the real low-down on being the one-and-only of a show. And that's without directing any episodes.
  • Dear Frank, I hear you've got at least half-a-dozen freelance spots open. Hire me. I work cheap.
I wonder if those freelance spots are just going to be going to the writers who just lost their staff gig anyway.
  • Dear Frank, did you know you have all these dudes that worked on The Shield. I would think you'd want to have those people around, y'know. The fuckin' Shield! I know you know, you did an episode of that.
However, if he's looking for other people.
  • Dear Frank, with this news about freelancing, I've seen more than a few people who are happily plugging away on awesome shows of their own say that they'd love to grab one of those freelance spots. Probably because they love the show (maybe cause they like money). Tell them no. There's plenty of writers out there that need work. I'm one of them. Don't let them get greedy. It's hard out there for a scribe, nobody with a steady gig (especially producers) oughta be taking extra jobs, essentially as a hobby, from them's that need them. Like me. A sample with my name on it won't even be read when So N. So calls up to write one for fun.
Wow, that was really self-serving, wasn't it?

Yeah. It was. Moving on,...
  • Dear Frank, I don't know what you think, but I think that holding the second season back until October after only six episodes now is the greatest idea ever. I know they want to build on their scary October theme and see that as a big part of why Walking Dead succeeded so well (they are wrong), but I don't think letting their momentum go from 28 Days Later zombie speed down to a standard shamble over the next year is the best thing.
  • However, Frank, things like this hubbub about the writing staff certainly gets some people talking (though, really, outside of geek circles and LA, probably not that many). See if you can't do something controversial with the show around June. Please.
Hmm, I wonder if going with no writing staff next year means they're using the comics more than the diversion in episode five suggests and will be using it as a de facto outline for the season and the episode. That pilot was a pretty fucking direct adaptation. I wonder how long it took him to do it. Maybe he and Kirkman could pull such a thing off with a couple of hired hands to fill in the gaps.
©2024 Michael Patrick Sullivan
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