Thursday, June 25, 2015

Review of The Walking Dead 109 - 120

The Walking Dead, issues 109-120. Robert Kirkman & Charlie Adlard.

We are continuing to see the natural results of Rick’s bad decisions and poor leadership skills. After the events of the last batch of issues, our crew finds themselves marching to war against Negan, who is clearly more rational than Rick, and has probably been making better decisions. Even his killings seem to have a point, and his reactions to the death of his own people are more logical and reasonable that Rick’s reactions are, which are far more emotional and irrational.

The first attack by Negan on Rick’s community is defeated by the literary device of “tiger ex machina,” as the character of King Ezekiel comes to the rescue. Ezekiel debuted in the prior volume (reviewed here), and has turned into an important character.

Ezekiel and Rick are able to ally with Jesus’ people on the hilltop, and the three communities organize a massive attack on Negan’s stronghold. Here, Rick’s strategic skills come to the forefront, and their plan is audacious and potentially successful. Casualties are had on both sides, though at the end of this volume, decisive victory has not been achieved by either side. But I imagine that this storyline can’t last much further into the next batch of issues.

Amidst all of the excitement of war, Kirkman is able to develop characters in these issues. Ezekiel and his tiger Shiva spend some quality time with Michonne, as do Rick and Andrea. That relationship is reasonable and has grown slowly, although she needs to talk more sense into Rick. Carl’s journey to potential eventual leadership continues, as he is tasked with more responsibility, and acts with more responsibility.

Again, this range of issues more resembles a suspense or action tale more than a horror tale. This ongoing fight for survival is not just a battle with zombies, but a battle against humans, in a fight to define humanity.

Source: public library

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