With the popularity
of the AMC TV series The Walking Dead, I thought it would be a
good idea to check the comic that started it all and what a fun
by Madman in Australia, this Image Comic trade paperback collects
the first few issues of this horror comic and is written by Robert
Kirkman (The Astounding Wolf-Man) with artist Tony Moore.
The comic also has this real retro feel to it, just like the 70's which produced
a plethora of horror comics such as The Witching Hour by DC Comics.
It should also be noted that this series pays a healthy amount of homage towards the master of zombie
movies, George Romero.
In the universe of The Walking Dead, mankind has been decimated by
zombies and for its survivors, society as we know it is rapidly
crumbling. As opposed to films like 28 days or Dawn of the Dead,
there is no defined ending in The Walking Dead but rather it's more
a journey about a small group of survivors and how they are trying
to survive in this chaotic world. Don't expect to find any Dues Ex
Machine ending here as the this world is quite harsh and depressing
at the same time. I also commend Kirkman for giving a great snapshot
of the characters he writes and although he is limited to
traditional comic blurbs, these snippets of text are quite powerful,
thanks to the artwork of Tony Moore.
Kirkman does use a few "zombie-esq" stereotypes in his presentation
but it's very hard to verge differently about this classic story of
the flesh eating undead. With that said, the characters of the story
include Rick Grimes, a former policeman, wife Lori and their son
Carl plus Rick's best friend Shane. There is an interesting
relationship between Lori and Shane which does assist with the drama
of the story and how much actually happened between them?
There are also several supporting characters in the
book which makes the cast quite large for a comic but fortunately it
works and they all get their allocated screen time. Although some of
the women play the stereo typical damsels in distress such as sisters
Amy and Andrea, it's also interesting to see Carl, Rick and Lori's
seven-year old son carry a firearm who is actually quite the zombie
killer... perhaps experience from video games? The ending is quite
shocking and proves that children and guns don't really mix. Don't
worry, I haven't really spoiled anything here.
However the series is not all about angst and relationship dynamics
as there is plenty of zombie action to be found within these pages
and some great flashbacks.
As mentioned, Moore's artwork works well with the story as he
creates the zombie ravaged city of Atlanta and without spoiling the
story too much, there's some great twists along the way, especially
in relation to the zombies themselves. My only gripe with the story
is that Kirkman does relay a little too much on those traditional
Romero clichés but even so, it's great to see what the excellent TV
series was based on.
If you're curious, you should check it out!