Why it's time to cancel The Walking Dead

We're seven seasons into The Walking Dead, AMC's live-action adaptation of Robert Kirkman's insanely popular, never-ending comic book zombie epic. And while the process of rebuilding a destroyed world is definitely not a brief one, it's possible that the TV show has already outstayed its welcome. Television shows have done much more with fewer seasons, and The Walking Dead doesn't seem to hold a flickering, creepy candle to the network's other original programming anymore. Here's why AMC should just pull the plug and let The Walking Dead wander off into a drippy zombie herd.

Stuck in a loop

The Walking Dead has a few basic plots, and they repeat endlessly until someone dies, suffers permanent physical damage, or the whole group goes on the run in search of a new home. The group finds a safe zone, discovers that it's not so safe after all, and leaves as a different group than before. Maybe someone will have a crisis about killing people to stay alive. Of course, we're bound to find more people won't even put down any zombies because they were people once. But at this point, we're just seeing the same thing with different characters, ad nauseam.

Two steps forward, one step back

The group has been wandering around for over six years, and they've only crossed four states. At this point, they don't even know if a few weeks of sub-freezing weather clears out the zombie hordes for good, or if they just get sassier and hungrier. Even with plenty of cars at their disposal and clear roads, they've made no real efforts to see how the other 44 contiguous states have handled this mess. While there'd be no massive change to Pennsylvania during a zombie uprising, the possibilities are still totally endless. Unfortunately, the showrunners aren't interested, and at this point, neither is the audience. Is Ohio too exotic or something?

Romantic subplots suck

By this point in The Walking Dead, we get a real zombie horde attack only once or twice per season, and a handful of hardcore one-on-one zombie struggles. Instead, most of the series' time is spent with the doomed characters making eyes at each other and forgetting that a million dead people are stinking up the neighborhood right outside their front door. If you can make out while the whole world smells like hot summer roadkill, more power to you. Ultimately, the romantic subplots are just boring and unrealistic. Sure, they're pretty important for TV, but they just ruin the show's already glacial pace.

Just spit it out

The current writers' guide for The Walking Dead must specifically ask for weird, ambiguous dialogue between characters. In a world where efficiency and succinctness are the difference between life and death, no one can seem to spit out a realistic line. The only person who has an excuse is Eugene, because of how socially awkward he is. We're being given H.P. Lovecraft on an R.L. Stine budget, and it's hard to believe that every single character speaks with the exact same meandering, meaningless dialect. Just kill zombies, and stop writing poetry about it.

Flip flop

As subjects of an intense drama, we expect our favorite characters to grow and evolve, but the only real dimension present in any Walking Dead character is whether or not they'll kill another person to save the group. Everyone vacillates wildly between abstaining from violence and the willingness to kill, but there's generally not a lot more depth than that. Someone might have a slightly different attitude while shoving a shank through their victim's eye socket, but it's all the same. Give us depth, give us conviction, or give us a conclusion.

No more Talking Dead

There are few worse things than Chris Hardwick shouting at you after every episode of The Walking Dead. It's always interesting to hear from the actors and creators, but the format of Talking Dead just isn't enjoyable. No, we don't need Hardwick to "get us through this," or to spout any other meme-friendly nerd catchphrases. Just let us marinate in the misery and bleakness that is a zombie-filled world without yelling at us about it. We're better than this, nerds. If The Walking Dead needs to end to stop the reign of Hardwick, so be it.

Closure

AMC needs to plan ahead. The Walking Dead's ratings are slipping, and although people tune when they know stuff's going to hit the fan, the numbers don't lie, and they express general boredom. The comic book continues on and on, but the same just isn't possible for a big-budget TV show. A planned ending would allow the writers to draw a satisfying conclusion to the series, which we desperately need. If they don't plan ahead, we'll get a Quantum Leap finale: a black screen with text, telling us that the group kept killing zombies until they all eventually died. Pass.