The Walking Dead has been derived from the titular comic book series, which has been on for much longer than the TV series. The main character, Rick, has been in the comics for the duration of its run and has evolved considerably over the years.

The transition from comics to TV hasn’t been exactly the same, and the TV Rick is different from the comic book version in many ways. The TV Rick has also undergone different storylines than his counterpart as well, and this means the two versions aren’t the same man. Let’s look at how the two match up and all the differences between them.


The Rick Grimes from the comics was a younger character than the one in the series. When the comics began, Rick was said to 29 years old, while the TV Rick was at the very youngest in his late-thirties.

Now, the age difference has grown even more so as the series has time-jumped all the way to 2020, after having started off in 2010, which makes the TV Rick in his late-forties. Meanwhile, the comic book series Rick is only in his mid to late-thirties. It’s interesting to note this because the evolution of his characterization has been derived from the comic version, yet that version is much younger than the TV series one.

Fighting Skills

This is somewhere the two versions drastically contrast one another. The comic book version of Rick is an adept fighter, but he doesn’t make use of his fists nearly as much as TV Rick. Comic Book Rick is more of a strategist as he usually considers alternatives before stepping into a fight. When it comes to fighting part, this Rick isn’t all-out like his TV counterpart.

TV Rick is a total brawler when it comes to fighting. He can take apart the biggest and meanest here; Rick has fought against huge guys like Pete Anderson, The Governor, Tyreese, and Negan. He usually wins because of a combination of brutality and use of weaponry.

Friendship With Morgan

In the comics, Morgan has been dead and gone for years now; he got the death Tyrese had in the TV series. Rick had a good relationship with Morgan, but it’s not something that was significant.

In the TV series, Rick and Morgan’s relationship was one of note as it was brought up ’till the very end of Morgan’s time on The Walking Dead. Morgan would travel hundreds of miles just so he could meet up with Rick, while Rick made Morgan his one exception to the “kill anyone” rule he had in season three. From season six to season eight, they operated on a mutual respect level despite having different ideologies. The Comic Book versions never had this kind of understanding.

Relationship With Negan

While the TV series wanted the same kind of Yin and Yang balance between Rick and Negan, this never came to pass because of Rick’s character being written out. In the comics, Rick saw his relationship with Negan evolve much farther as the two were sworn enemies, then Rick became subservient to Negan, only to go at war with one another. They would then become less hostile once Negan helped him through the whisperer saga.

The TV Rick never got to the point where he operated as an ally with Negan; the last we saw of them was the hostile conversation they had in Negan’s cell. TV Rick’s relationship with Negan always remained on an animosity level.

Number Of Children

TV Rick was far more fatherly than comic Rick has ever been. The TV version’s reason for living remained his children to the very end; he was distraught when he thought he lost Judith and was inconsolable when he lost Carl. He even fathers R.J. Grimes without him being knowledgeable of the child’s existence.

In the comics, Rick never got to the parental level with Judith, who was killed as a little baby, while his relationship with Carl is hardly as close as the TV version was. Currently in the comics, Rick and Carl have gone several issues without even interacting with one another. This makes TV Rick a better father because he loved both Carl and Judith very much while the comic version only has an okay relationship with just the one child.

Friendship With Daryl

As far as forging friendship goes, the comic book Rick has nothing on the TV Rick either. The easiest example for this would be how the TV version had a best friend in Daryl while the comic version had no one.

In the TV series, Rick and Daryl had a brotherly relationship, one that Daryl still holds onto after last having seen Rick six years previously. Daryl had also filled in the role of Rick’s right-hand man for the majority of the series, something that wasn’t possible in the comics because Daryl doesn’t exist at all in that continuity. Instead, it was Abraham who was Rick’s right-hand man, but he was killed a long time ago, unlike Daryl, making the Rick and Daryl relationship something unique.

Married To Andrea

The TV Rick and Andrea had almost no relationship with one another, and this Andrea was killed off as early as in season three. In the comics, however, Andrea and Rick’s relationship last for several years, to the point that they even got married.

The comics Rick saw Andrea as his true love and even told her he loved her more than he had Lori After Andrea’s death, Rick was shattered and spent the next dozen issues still mourning her loss. The TV versions had barely any dialogue exchanged with each other, and Rick couldn’t have cared less of her dalliances with Shane and The Governor. The relationship of comic Rick and Andrea was turned into the TV Rick and Michonne version instead.

The Arm

The biggest difference as far as appearances are concerned between TV and Comic Rick is the fact that the latter version doesn’t have a right arm. This was because the Governor cut the arm of Rick during their war.

In the TV version, Rick kept his limbs intact throughout his tenure, and this was a conscious decision as the show developers thought it would be too much work to have digitally make it appear that Andrew Lincoln doesn’t have an arm onscreen. The lack of an arm is also a factor in why TV Rick is a much better than fighter than the comic book version. The comic Rick has had a prosthetic arm for the majority of his tenure.

He’s still In Alexandria

The whole dynamic of The Walking Dead was ripped apart after the main star Andrew Lincoln chose to walk away rather than continue his role. This means the show had to improvise and write Rick out of Alexandria. As it happened, Rick was flown out to a distant land by the helicopter group and has never returned.

Meanwhile, the comic book version is still living in Alexandria and faced the challenge of the Whisperers head on. He’s currently embroiled in a storyline with the Commonwealth, a community with over 50,000 members, and continues to look out for Alexandria’s safety. The TV version will likely never return to Alexandria as there will be a trilogy detailing of what happened to this Rick.

Ultimate Fate

The most major change to Rick’s position in the series is that we don’t know if TV Rick will bite the dust or not. In the comics, it has been announced beforehand that Rick will not be surviving the whole story.

The comics are meant to run for 300 issues, and before the conclusion, Rick will be saying goodbye to his life. The TV Rick might have been on course for something similar, but since he’s not even involved in the main story now, this might have changed and we’ll have to see what the story of the film series will have Rick doing. Perhaps the TV Rick might survive the events of the series after all.