Friday, January 27, 2012

The Walking Dead #93

Written by Robert Kirkman
Art by Charlie Adlard and Cliff Rathburn

Every month I talk about how great this comic is, but I usually spend more time writing about the writing than I do the art.  I notice I have a tendency to do that with most comics, unless the art blows me away.

The truth is, Charlie Adlard (with Cliff Rathburn on grays) has been doing an incredible job on this book since he joined it (one month before I did).  Early on in the series, I sometimes found it difficult to tell some of the minor characters apart, but as the series has progressed, he's really worked a lot of the character's personalities into how they look.  In this issue, when Rick turns the tables on the man that they met last issue (why is no one reacting to the fact that he calls himself Jesus?), I could see that it was coming on his face.  That's rare in comics.

Also, there is a lovely double-page spread that looks a lot like the cover, showing that Adlard is just as versatile with cityscapes and architecture as he is people and the undead.  I don't know why he's not receiving more acclaim for his work here, but at the same time, I'm glad he's not being lured over to the Big Two - this series wouldn't be the same without him.

Now that the existence of other communities has been more or less proven, Rick goes into defensive mode this month, getting the Community prepared for a possible attack.  I'm sure, after what happened at the prison, Rick is going to remain distrustful of large groups of people for some time.  It is interesting watching him work through possible paths that are open to him - in some ways, I'm sure that the Governor went through a similar decision process before he started going a little crazy. 

There's a terrific scene where Rick, scouting with Michonne and Abraham, realizes that roamer attacks barely raise his pulse rate now.  I feel like he's moved through his recent crippling insecurities, and has become more confident in himself as a leader and survivor.  But, as we've seen before, hubris is a bigger threat to Rick than zombies every time.  I'm curious and excited to see what Robert Kirkman has in store for our favourite survivors as they begin to explore the world around them.

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