Best Of Both Worlds: These ‘The Walking Dead’ Characters Are Better In The Comics
The latest season of AMC’s “The Walking Dead” really put us through the wringer. Between major character deaths, major character fake-out deaths and annoying cliffhangers (seriously, that was some sort of delayed April Fools’ Day joke, right?), the show often leaves a lot to be desired. Fans of the comic book series, however, know that just because someone sucks on TV, that doesn’t necessarily make them a bad character in the other universe. In fact, several Alexandria residents are so much more interesting in the pages of the books that you might be tempted to jump ship and make reading your new thing on Sunday nights (at least until the show comes back because, come on, you’re not actually going to stop watching it). So, without further ado, here are 10 characters who are infinitely cooler in the comics than they ever were on the show.
(Note: We are only going to cover characters who were alive (either on the TV show or in the books) at the time Negan made his grand entrance. That counts as your warning that there are ***SPOILERS EVERYWHERE*** from here on out.)
Sgt. Abraham Ford
Would you take anyone seriously if they told you that Abraham was their favorite character on the TV series? Well, if someone tells you that about the comics, you should shake their hand, because he’s about the biggest badass they had after Tyreese was iced (again, you wouldn’t know that by the show’s depiction). The book version of Abraham is essentially what you’d get if you swapped out TV Abraham’s dingleberry analogies and “mother dicks” with straight “shits” and “fucks.” Abraham is also built more like actor Kevin Durand than Michael Cudlitz in the comics, so even if he decided to say something as absurd as “bitch nuts” (which he never would), you’d be too afraid to mock him.
Eugene is far from useless in the comic books like he is on the show. Sure, he pulled the same “fake cure” crap. And yeah, he’d still creep on Abraham and Rosita banging each other from time to time. But once that was all said and done, he actually carried his weight. There were no instances of Rosita teaching him to use a weapon or him cowering in fear every time a walker came his way. Plus, comic Eugene even wound up dating Rosita after her breakup instead of that douche nozzle Spencer. Props.
Father Gabriel Stokes
Speaking of huge pansies, Father Gabriel is about the biggest they come in both iterations. However, what makes his comic book character stand out more is that he stands out less. As weird as that may sound, his cowardly nature and warnings to the townspeople about his own group are virtually glossed over in comparison to the TV series. And we can all agree that the less Father G, the better, especially when he does things like inexplicably go from being the world’s biggest namby-pamby to someone Rick trusts with his entire town’s safety in the span of half a season.
If Father Gabriel is better in the comics because we have to deal with him less, then Heath is the exact opposite. He has literally been in five episodes of the show (that’s less than freakin’ Enid!), which is pretty sad considering he becomes the most loyal and dependable of the original Alexandrians in no time flat. Plus, he dates Denise instead of Tara in the books which is…um…basically just a pointless plot change that ultimately didn’t matter. OK, you got us there.
This guy is Aaron’s boyfriend. We just figured we’d remind you since that’s about all we know about him on the show. While the comics don’t do much better at fleshing him out, they at least feature him from time to time interacting with Aaron and a few of the other Alexandrians just to give you a sense of his personality (which is actually pretty silly and fun on occasion). Too bad TV fans may never know.
Again, not by much, but Olivia is slightly less worthless in the comics than on the show. In fact, we probably could have excluded her entirely from this list and no one would have noticed. But if for whatever reason you’re jonesing for more of the lady who basically takes inventory of supplies and looks like she’d be horrible to make conversation with for any length of time, you’ll have better luck with the books.
Jesus (Paul Monroe)
If a guy doing acrobatics in his winter clothing seems a bit odd to see on television, for whatever reason it works in the comics. There is still plenty to learn about Jesus on the TV series, but as far as entrances alone, watching him take on Abraham and Michonne on the printed page is far more exhilarating than the Benny Hill spoof it translated into on the screen. On top of that, you can’t tell us you didn’t crack up laughing the first time you saw him in his terrible wig without the stocking cap on. How were we supposed to take that seriously?
We will maintain until the day he dies on the show that Carl is the worst. But that couldn’t be further from the truth in comic book form. Not only is he actually given interesting story lines, but he also serves as a reminder of what the new world will do to someone who has practically grown up in it their entire lives. Basically, they have no soul and become a cold, calculating killing machine if need be. Trying to translate this to the television character is just…well, I guess you can say the proof is in the pudding.
You remember her, right? She went down in the Season 3 finale of the show, but has been alive and kicking in the comics since the start. While they may have taken her down the wrong path on the TV series to the point where she just had to go, they’ve at least partially redeemed their mistake by giving the brunt of her ongoing story lines in the books to characters like Rosita and Michonne. Andrea is the one hooking up with Rick in the comics at this point, after all. Richonne be damned!
It’s hard to call comic book Glenn the de facto better character, but he was the touch of lightheartedness throughout the entire series until his death by Lucille in Issue #100. To put it another way, if the series “Futurama” was a zombie drama instead, Glenn was Fry. We’re certainly not saying that the Glenn of the television series doesn’t have his merits (he’s certainly more stoic and badass), but the Glenn of the page was the everyman you wanted to see persevere ’til the end, which made his death that much more of a punch to the scrotum.
As for Negan…
…well, the jury’s still out. That intro of his in the Season 6 finale was pretty much word-for-word from the comics, which certainly doesn’t bode well for the man above. Now, to simply wait all summer for closure.