‘The Walking Dead’ Spinoff Creator Dave Erickson Calls New Show A ‘Companion Piece’ Not A Prequel

Fans have been suffering major withdrawals since the season finale of The Walking Dead a few weeks ago, but thankfully, the premiere season of Fear the Walking Dead is just around the corner. Showrunner Dave Erickson recently sat down with the Hollywood Reporter to share some details on the spinoff series that he calls a “parallel story rather than a prequel.”

So, since it is not a prequel, what exactly is the new show? Erickson described the show as a “companion piece.”

“We are loosely covering the period of time that [The Walking Dead’s] Rick (Andrew Lincoln) was in his coma in season one. We’re able to watch and experience the things that he missed. It’s more of a parallel story than a prequel; imagine the opening where Rick gets shot and goes in his coma — that day was probably very close to our day one. We’re playing out the idea of what was going on in the country and the world until he woke up, stepped outside and it’s welcome to the apocalypse. That’s why a ‘companion piece’ has been the phrase used at the network. It’s not a prequel in the sense of Better Call Saul, where we’re jumping back six, seven years. It does tie very specifically into the pilot of the original. ‘Prequel’ is not the right word; it’s kind of its own strange, hybrid thing. I wish I had a better word.”

Robert Kirkman, who created The Walking Dead, was also quick to point out in a video released by AMC, that in order to enjoy the spinoff, you will not have to be up to date on the original show.

“I think the coolest thing about his show is that it tells its own story,” he related. “You don’t need to have watched The Walking Dead to understand Fear the Walking Dead.”

The new show is the story about a family trying to stick together through an outbreak or terror. It will star Cliff Curtis, Sons of Anarchy star Kim Dickens, Frank Dillane, and Alycia Debnam Carey, according to IMDB.

Season 1 of Fear will only feature six episodes, but Erickson explained that it was really up to AMC as to whether that grows into larger seasons in the future.

“I would imagine the network has a very specific plan. I think 13 is a great number; 15, 16, it’s really a question of having the time to sit down and make sure we’re not burning story to burn story; that we’re able to build something that’s layered and textured and compelling. I think it’s a safe bet that if things go well, they’ll probably want more rather than less, but I’m not sure what that number’s going to be.”

Fear the Walking Dead is set to debut sometime this summer, but no exact date has been announced.

[Featured image: courtesy of AMC/Fear The Walking Dead]