This post concerns the AMC Television series The Walking Dead and contains spoilers. This series is based on a comic book of the same name, but I don't read, nor do I have any interest in comic books. The series, however, is something I am very much into.
The purpose of this post is to discuss a question I have about the "disease" or "infection" which causes a deceased person to rise as a zombie (or "Walker", as they are called in the series. The term "zombie" is not used).
According to the Walking Dead Wiki, "Morgan... checks Rick for zombie bites or fever, either of which could indicate he is turning into a zombie himself".
This seems to confirm what I previously thought, which is that getting bit by a zombie leads to sickness and death, after which the individual rises as a walker. It is mentioned that Morgan's wife was infected, developed a fever, was confined to bed rest for a period of time, and eventually died, later rising from the dead.
However, the "if you're infected you get sick, die, and turn into a zombie" rule seems to have been discarded with the revelation at the end of season 2. Near the end of the just concluded season, the protagonist Rick Grimes reveals that Jenner (the scientist they encountered at the CDC) told him that everyone is already infected and will rise again when they die (this explains why Randall and Shane both become Walkers even though neither is bitten or scratched - the only way the audience was previously lead to believe someone could be infected).
My question is - is this revelation, which the writers no doubt consider themselves extremely clever for coming up with, at odds with the original "infected" explanation given at the beginning of the series by Morgan?
Correction: According to the wiki for the comic book series, "Julie reanimates without being bitten resulting in the revelation that all of the survivors were infected". Now, I have no idea who the heck "Julie" is (a character that is only in the comic, perhaps, or a character that hasn't been introduced in the TV series yet), but this finding confirms that the writers of the TV series didn't come up with the idea of everyone being infected.
The question now is - am I misremembering what Morgan said happened to his wife (that the infection killed her), or did the writers screw up?