"The comic book is something very special to me, and I think over the life of it, I think that you can see how it became — or always was — Rick Grimes' story and Carl Grimes' story, the same way that the Telltale game is Clementine's story. So that story had a natural conclusion, and I was very excited to get to that point," Kirkman said.
"I cannot thank all of you enough for the support and everything that you do for this series that allowed me to get to that point. But this show is about the world, and we've proven that with the last season."
Unlike the book, which ended without warning upon concluding the stories of Rick and Carl, TWD continued on past the Season 8 death of Carl (Chandler Riggs) and the Season 9 disappearance of Rick (Andrew Lincoln), whose story will extend into the coming trilogy of theatrical release movies.
Despite worries the book's ending signals the looming end of the live-action franchise, the mothership series is expected to continue beyond Season 10, due out October 6 on AMC.
"Anyone that's concerned that the fact that this comic book wrapped up means that Season 10 is going to somehow spontaneously end on episode 4 as a surprise, that is not going to happen," Kirkman said.
"There's a lot more story to tell, and I'm very excited to be working with [chief content officer] Scott [Gimple] and [TWD showrunner] Angela [Kang] to figure out if there are any other threads in the comic that we didn't quite get to, to bring the world past that point. Because I think there is some story to tell when you're talking about the world of The Walking Dead. So I'm very excited about that, so no worries there."