With many differences and many similarities between the graphic novels and the hit TV show, one that stood out to me in Season 5 was Eugene admitting he is not a scientist while the group is still in Georgia. In the graphic novels, this revelation does not come until the group is already closing in on Washington, putting them in the area where the storyline continues with Alexandria and The Hilltop and so forth. But with Eugene outted already on the TV show and the group still down south, what incentive is there to go to Washington?
There have been lots of differences between the graphic novel series and the TV series that have been reconciled in ways that keep things fresh for the fans, such as replacing Dale and Andrea's relationship with Bob and Sasha's (complete with the "tainted meat" scene which was awesome in both series) and replacing Billy and Ben (the twins from the graphic novels) with Lizzy and Mika ("Just look at the flowers"). How will the writers for the TV series move the group to Washington logically now that the group knows Eugene was lying?
Originally, Atlanta was supposed to be where the safe-zone was and it never worked out that way for the group (in either series). What will convince Rick and company that trekking up the East Coast to a place that they are unfamiliar with is still a viable option? Or will the TV series simply continue the story in Georgia? Perhaps this dilemma presents a unique opportunity for the TV series to introduce a new character - one that will reinforce the idea that Washington is the place to go.
The distance from Atlanta to Washington DC is over 600 miles by road in the world we live in today - how long would it take to travel that distance in a world filled with walkers, car wrecks, and dangerous survivors? Are we looking at finishing Season 5 and half of Season 6 before the group gets to Washington? And if so, what sort of conflicts will arise in this lull before the next major storyline picks up?
Matt Cordisco is a writer, filmmaker, and zombie fanatic. You can follow him on Twitter @Matt_InTheWoods