Ahead of its midseason premiere, AMC has renewed The Walking Dead for a tenth season. While season 9 is only half over, fans of the post-apocalyptic zombie series can look forward to the show continuing into 2020.
Major changes were made to The Walking Dead during the first half of season 9, beginning with a huge time skip which saw the show jump forward by 18 months. After five episodes, the show lost its lead, when Rick (Andrew Lincoln) was supposedly killed while blowing up a bridge. Rick's "death" was followed by an even bigger time jump. Six years passed, and the entire landscape of The Walking Dead has gone through a massive transformation. The last few episodes have introduced new allies and new villains, known as the Whisperers. The Whisperers are a mysterious gang of humans who pretend to be zombies.
The Walking Dead showrunner Angela Kang posted a video on Instagram announcing that the series had been renewed for season 10, which will air in October. The video includes a shot of the Whisperers, which is a clear indication of what direction the show will take when it returns for its tenth season. Eight more episodes remain in season 9, so it was never likely that the new storyline would be resolved in such a short time, particularly since the coming of the Whisperers culminated in the death of Jesus (Tom Payne), a key character on the show.
The Whisperers are one of the biggest antagonists in The Walking Dead comics, so it's not surprising that they'll be sticking around for more than one season. The storyline involving Negan, for example, lasted for three seasons, so it remains to be seen how long Alexandria and the other communities will have to deal with them.
A tenth season for The Walking Dead was expected, despite all the recent talk of falling ratings. The show's numbers have been declining since season 7, and its low ratings have broken records several times in its current season, causing some to question the show's future. However, AMC has expressed plenty of confidence in The Walking Dead brand. In fact, AMC has a decade of content planned for The Walking Dead universe, though its not clear how many more seasons the show itself is expected to last. It should be noted that though The Walking Dead certainly isn't at its highest point, it remains one of the highest-rated shows on TV.
Season 9 of The Walking Dead returns Sunday, February 10, on AMC.
Source: Angela Kang