When you think of Robert Kirkman, it’s hard not to immediately flash to his The Walking Dead franchise. It’s not his only TV project, though. Outcast, based on another of his comic books, premiered on Cinemax in June 2016. Now, nearly two years later, it’s ready for Season 2.
The series, which centers on a troubled young man (Patrick Fugit) and a reverend (Philip Glenister) fighting to rid people of demonic possessions, has already aired its second season in the United Kingdom. While there’s been a prolonged wait to see the series in the US, that doesn’t necessarily mean its future is in doubt.
In fact, unlike The Walking Dead, Kirkman even knows how he wants the series to end. During a group interview, GameSpot broached that very topic with the comic book writer and executive producer. “It’s a much more finite story and it’s a story that has a planned ending. The Outcast comic book series will not go as long as Walking Dead,” Kirkman says. “I’ve an ending in mind. I know when it ends, we haven’t announced it yet.”
As far as he’s concerned, the expiration date he has in mind for the comics applies to the TV series, as well. “It’s not gonna go on, as many seasons [as The Walking Dead]. But that’s by design; like this is a story that has a beginning, middle, and an end,” he explains. “I knew the ending of the story before I started the first issue before I started the pilot, and we’ve been working towards that, every minute along the way and so it’s just a much more contained story. It’s not a sprawling zombie epic and crazy apocalyptic world.”
For Kirkman, that difference shows how much he grew as a writer between The Walking Dead‘s first issue in 2003 and the 2014 launch of Outcast as a comic book. “[It’s] maybe a little bit of a maturity on my part because with Walking Dead it’s like, ‘I don’t know, this is fun, where does this go, let’s see,'” he says. “And as a storyteller, I have always been scared of endings and I’ve always avoided them, which has served me well, in a lot of places. But, I feel like I have grown to the point where you know I feel very comfortable. The story’s gonna be better if we go here and if we’re always working towards this end it’ll be a better piece when it’s all done.”
So how long many seasons he envision Outcast going? “This is where I jokingly usually say a hundred,” Kirkman says. “I think, yeah, like Breaking Bad, that’s like a five-, maybe four-season show, I mean, depending on how the story breaks down.” At this point, the series has not been renewed beyond the upcoming second season, which arrives on Friday, July 20, at 10 PM ET on Cinemax.
Additional reporting by Michael Rougeau