We know you've heard that age-old joke that Black people in horror films always die first, well it looks to be the same story in the hit zombie apocalypse series, "The Walking Dead."
The new prequel to "The Walking Dead," appropriately titled, "Fear the Walking Dead " made its official debut and as the first few episodes have aired, the show is already receiving criticisms about a noticeable pattern of getting rid of all the Black characters.
The original show received the same backlash when viewers began to notice that every time a new Black character was introduced another would die, thus not allowing more than a couple Black characters to coexist in the series.
Allow us to apologize for the spoilers to follow…
So far in the new show, a drug dealer named Calvin and Madison’s boss, Art have faced gruesome deaths. Needless to say, they were both Black male speaking roles.
So far every black male featured actor on #FearTheWalkingDead has died. Fairly horribly. Y'all trying to make me stop watching pretty early.— Game of Thornes (@GeoffThorne) August 31, 2015
Then there’s Alicia’s Black boyfriend, Matt, who hasn’t died yet but seems to be on his way out as he was exhibiting flu-like symptoms and suffering from a bite wound in the most recent episode.
Fans are concerned that the discouraging pattern will continue.
Showrunner Dave Erickson chimed in to defend the show’s diversity in an interview with the Hollywood Reporter.
"I realize it's clearly become an issue and it's something we are mindful of," said Erickson. "But ultimately it's trying to tell the story the best way we can and cast the best people we can.”
"When you're dealing with a show where you have a cast that is as diverse as ours is, it's inevitable that characters of color are going to get bit and are going to turn or die,” he added. “If you look at the larger scope of this season, what people will see is that there is parity.”
Not sure if Erickson’s response to the criticisms really address the root of peoples’ concerns.
No one has implied that all characters of color need to stay alive throughout the entire series, but can we at least get more than the first two episodes?
It seems a little too coincidental that a similar scenario is happening in this show as what occurred in the original when Morgan left after the pilot, then T-Dog showed up and when Oscar arrived T-Dog died and then Oscar was killed in the same episode that introduced Tyreese.
Maybe the rest of the season will even out the score and show some “parity” as Erickson says. After all, the original The Walking Dead has begun letting Black characters live a little longer in addition to adding new ones.