Based on the ratings The Walking Dead has drawn for season 8 so far, it seems safe to say that the AMC series isn’t quite as popular as it once was. That said, it’s still the highest rated scripted show on TV, and that means something.
With that in mind, it’s no surprise that AMC has opted to renew The Walking Dead for a ninth season, according to Deadline. Season 9 will presumably consist of the usual 16 episode order, and premiere in fall 2018.
In additional to the renewal, The Walking Dead will also experience a small creative shakeup with season 9, as longtime showrunner Scott M. Gimple is leaving the job. Gimple will be replaced as showrunner by Angela Kang, who’s been writing for the series since 2011.
Gimple isn’t being fired from TWD though, and is instead being promoted to the newly created position of Chief Content Officer. This role will see Gimple oversee the creative path of TWD, spinoff Fear TWD, and the overall Walking Dead franchise.
It’s likely that Gimple’s new post was created due to the impending crossover between TWD and Fear, which will see fan favorite supporting character Morgan Jones (Lennie James) depart the original series and come aboard the spinoff.
The Walking Dead returns for the second half of season 8 on February 25th. Here’s hoping this new batch of episodes finally sees the despotic Negan get what’s coming to him, and Rick’s group find some kind of – at least brief – victory.
All images credited to AMC.