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Review: The Walking Dead #177

Meet Officer Mercer, the newest individual we’re introduced to living in the “New World Order” that is the Commonwealth. The Walking Dead #177 is broken up into a few parts and while each segment varies greatly, each emphasizes the focus on the living with the series.

Rick is with Mikey who is working through issues through poetry an interesting aspect in a world where danger is around every corner and the dead have risen. There’s a focus on addressing loss and trauma of what’s going on and with Rick involved he is of course still dealing with the loss of Andrea. It’s an interesting an important segment as it shows that things are relatively stable but there’s still emotional turmoil. A segment with Maggie as well shows this aspect of stability. After everything that has happened, this is a time when you can let your guard down and enjoy things a bit.

Emotion is the name of the game of this issue as Michonne is reunited with her daughter Elodie. We learn Elodie’s story and are reminded of the horrible things everyone has done or had done to them to survive. It’s emotional and writer Robert Kirkman as usual does a solid job of focusing on the human aspect of the story. The series isn’t about surviving the dead, it’s about living in a world of the dead.

We’re also introduced to Mercer and Governor Milton’s son. This is the first sign that things aren’t perfect in the world of the Commonwealth and indicates where the next bit of turmoil is coming from. The series has done a good job of keeping the crazy hidden but we readers know there’s no way this new community can be as good as it’s presented. The cracks are visible here and it’s hard to know who’s right and who’s wrong in this situation. Unlike with other communities, the sides are a bit grey. Kirkman gives us something familiar but changes it up just enough to keep it interesting.

The art by Charlie Adlard, with ink by Stefano Gaudiano, and gray tones by Cliff Rathburn is excellent as always. Each new character has so much personality and the emotion of the story is driven as much by the art as it is by the story itself. That’s equally impressive since the story is in black and white which changes up how we “read” the scenes a bit more. It emphasizes Adlard’s line work and the detail, or lack of, added to each scene and character. The lettering by Rus Wooton too adds to the emotion of it all making it a bit clearer how dialogue is delivered. Slight bolding helps emphasize a word.

This new arc has been a slow but solid build introducing us to this new world and letting the malice (or expected malice) build. Is it in our minds considering the series history? Or, is there something up with these new characters and community that spells trouble for our heroes. Is it all too good to be true and this is the quiet before the storm? Kirkman and team know how to build to a cathartic explosion and this latest arc feels like it’s building to something, I just don’t know what.

Story: Robert Kirkman Art: Charlie Adlard Cover: Charlie Adlard Cover Color: Dave Stewart
Ink: Stefano Gaudiano Gray Tones: Cliff Rathburn Letterer: Rus Wooton Editor: Sean Mackiewicz
Story: 8.15 Art: 8.25 Overall: 8.2 Recommendation: Buy

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: The Walking Dead #176

The “New World Order” is here as Michonne and her group has made contact with a new community and things are definitely no longer the same. The Walking Dead #176 picks up right where you’d expect with Michonne distraught over the discovery that her daughter may be alive and has been looking for her.

That emotional ride is the driver of this issue as writer Robert Kirkman plays with that moment extending the tension, fear, hope, and more of the group throughout the issue.

What Kirkman does that’s really interesting is call back to a meeting with another Governor that eventually went off the rails. Like Michonne and our protagonists, we too are weary based on what we know.

Helping Kirkman is the art by Charlie Adlard with ink by Stefano Gaudiano, gray tones by Cliff Rathburn, and lettering by Rus Wooton. There’s a cleanliness and orderly sense of it all that’s emphasized through the art, not just the words. That order ups the tension as things progresses through the story. We get glimpses of reality at times but it’s the small detail in the art that provides more clues as to the world than what’s delivered in the dialogue. The images tell as much of a story as the dialogue.

This issue, while simple, is all about that emotional journey and build up to the cathartic end. It’s an emotional roller coaster that pays off in a build up throughout the issue. Kirkman is a master of this type of storytelling and here’s a prime example of setting the mood, building tension, and letting it build to release.

Story: Robert Kirkman Art: Charlie Adlard
Ink: Stefano Gaudiano Gray Tones: Cliff Rathburn
Lettering: Rus Wooton Cover Colors: Dave Stewart
Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: The Walking Dead #175

New friends. New enemies. New threats. It’s a whole new world as “New World Order” kicks off with The Walking Dead #175.

175 issues and it’s kind of hard to surprise us anymore but write Robert Kirkman has managed to do exactly that with the first part to the new story arc “New Wold Order.” The Walking Dead #175 is impressive in that it not only creates some tense moments but also delivers something that generally feels new and interesting. It also leaves us with an ending that’s a bit shocking.

It’s hard to really review this issue because saying why it’s so good will ruin the fun and surprise.

The issue focuses on Michonne’s group that has been traveling to meet a mysterious individual they’ve only talked to through radio. The last issue ended with them making contact and this new community may or may not be friendly.

Kirkman uses the issue to play with that keeping the interaction tense and leaving the reader to constantly question what’s going to happen. We meet new individuals, and the glimpse of a new community and possibly way of doing things. What’s revealed is intriguing and absolutely lives up to the title of the arc. But, it’s that last few pages where your heart races and what’s revealed is game changing.

The art as always is great. Charlie Adlard, Stefano Gaudiano, and Cliff Rathburn take Kirkman’s script and presents it in a way that enhances the tense nature of it all. New characters too are instantly recognizable with personality. The art especially helps to the story in a way beyond what’s said. Each piece of armor, how characters look, it all allows the reader to get a better idea of what might be going on.

A fantastic issue that has me excited to see what’s next.

Story: Robert Kirkman Art: Charlie Adlard Ink: Stefano Gaudiano
Gray Tones: Cliff Rathburn Lettering: Rus Wooton
Story: Art: Overall: Recommendation: Buy

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Eternity #3

ETERNITY_003_COVER-A_JELENA

“In a realm beyond the limits of human perception, a group of impossibly powerful beings have laid claim to a human child… Now, to save their son, Abram Adams – the god-like being known as Divinity – and his comrade turned lover, Myshka, must finally reconcile their humanity with the unreal abilities conferred upon them…and journey into the source of their power… Where they will bear witness to the truth of their purpose…and their role in the cosmic reckoning that is to come…”

Eternity #3 is one of two Matt Kindt scripted titles set in the far reaches of space that’s out this week. This one follows Abram Adams, aka Divinity, and Myksha, the Russian Cosmonauts gifted with incredible power after a mission to the far reaches of the galaxy, as they return to the source of their power to rescue their baby from a strange group who are trying to fulfill a prophecy. In it’s simplest terms, Eternity has been about parents literally going to ends of the galaxy for their son, and finding themselves embroiled in a civil war between two factions seeking to take advantage of the death of the Observer.

ETERNITY_003_005Once again Divinity’s preference toward avoiding violence is present, with a poignant internal monologue set against some incredible visuals that show you in moments you’re not in Kansas anymore. The creative team do a fantastic job in introducing you to the world of the Unknown as the story is happening, blending the exposition into the art and dialogue with such effortless grace that you won’t realize how well it’s being done until you’re more than half way through the issue.

Yet despite the comic taking place as far from Earth as you’re likely to get in the Valiant universe, it’s also one of the most intensely human and relatable stories the company have published recently. Eternity #3 is a nigh on perfect comic in a series that brings the focus of the franchise back to Divinity, and the very human soul wielding godlike power and away from the alternate reality Stalinverse. As much as I enjoyed Divinity IIIEternity is shaping up to be a much stronger story in almost every way.

Story: Matt Kindt Penciller: Trevor Hairsine
Inker: Ryan Winn with Stefano Gaudiano Colourist: David Baron
Story: 9 Art: 9.75 Overall: 9.5 Recommendation: Buy

Valiant provided a FREE copy for review, I’ll still pick up a copy from my LCS

Review: The Walking Dead #173

Jesus is confronted on the road…

When the last issue ended it didn’t look good for Jesus and Aaron as the two were confronted, preyed upon might be a better way to say it, by Beta, the remaining leader of the Whisperers. The Walking Dead #173 kicks off with some action as Jesus and Aaron have to take on Beta and a few followers, fighting for their lives. Writer Robert Kirkman feels like he’s wrapping up this last chapter of the series with this issue. It closes the Whisperers’ chapter in a way as we not only get a solid fight but also a reveal of Beta’s face, and a background in some way.

It’s an interesting choice as it does close a chapter, possibly, but is smart in that it takes care of open ended threads as the series heads into the next announced storyline “New World Order” which looks to be laid out here in this issue. Michonne and her crew have made it to their destination in Ohio and after a few slightly tense issues… well, we’ll leave you to read and find out for yourself.

Charlie Adlard provides the pencils along with Stefano Gaudiano on inks and Cliff Rathburn on gray tones. As always, the art is solid in its depictions and stands out in making every character unique and stand out (even zombies all have their own personalities). This issue in particular uses space and black/darkness to set a tone for both halves of the main story (and the other plots that are touched upon). Space use is an interesting one and emphasizes some of the aspects of each scene. Rick mourning Andrea with lots of space invokes his emptiness and loneliness.

The issue is a decent one and helps wraps some things up but it does so in a way that feels a little rushed and forced in. It’s almost like a “oh crap I need to end this story before we get to the next.” Things easily could have been left open for fans to ponder and never answered, and things would have been satisfying in their own way. With this route a chapter closes and maybe a new one opens through it. It’s an epilogue that’s unexpected and doesn’t feel necessary.

Story: Robert Kirkman Art: Charlie Adlard Ink: Stefano Gaudiano
Gray Tones: Cliff Rathburn 
Cover: Dave Stewart, Charlie Adlard
Story: 7.0 Art: 8.0 Overall: 7.0 Recommendation: Read

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: The Walking Dead #158

the-walking-dead-158The Whisper War” part two ups the action and balances a hell of a lot in this tension-filled issue from writer Robert Kirkman, artist Charlie Adlard, with inks by Stefano Gaudiano, and Cliff Rathburn on gray tones.

The Walking Dead #158 is the first massive clash between Rick and the Whisperers with bodies piling up and things looking really grim for every side. I say every side because this issue really sets up a lot of sides as help is sent and not sent by Rick’s various allies.

The issue is one bit battle interspersed with cut scenes at what’s happening outside of the battle back in the various camps/towns, the politicking occurring by the various groups. Those scenes are key as they up the tension leaving you wondering if those battling will see help come or if they’ll be overrun by the hoard of walkers and Whisperers.

Then there’s Negan.

In some ways you could call this “All Out War 2: Electric Boogaloo” as the issue revolves a lot around Negan’s actions. Will he betray Dwight and his team? Is he really on board “Team Rick?” Is he still out for himself and doing what he wants? We expect him to turn at any moment and that’s part of the fantastic tension of the issue. Will he or won’t he? Kirkman keeps us guessing until the very end.

The action is brutal and Adlard, Gaudiano, and Rathburn don’t hold back as intestines fall to the ground, heads are lopped off, and folks are stabbed. There’s lots of stabbing. They also do an excellent job of using the walkers/Whisperer shots to enhance the chaos of not knowing who’s human and who’s not. The art drives that part really well and as a reader I caught myself looking into crowd shots trying to figure that out.

The issue is a solid one packed with action and tension and most importantly has me wanting to see what happens next.

Story: Robert Kirkman Art: Charlie Adlard Ink: Stefano Gaudiano Gray Tones: Cliff Rathburn
Story: 8 Art: 8.45 Overall: 8 Recommendation: Buy

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: The Walking Dead #156

TheWalkingDead156_coverIt’s “Queen and King” in The Walking Dead #156 which focuses on Negan’s experience with the Whisperers. Like the recent comics that have run in Image Comics Image+ magazine, this single issue gives us so much depth as far as Negan and also Alpha, the leader of the Whisperers. And the comic re-emphasizes that The Walking Dead is about the living people, not the shambling hoards.

The issue is all about Negan as he’s integrated into the world of the Whisperers. Through each segment, we learn more about the rules of the Whisperers and how they structure their society. It’s a fascinating peek behind the curtain. We’ve gotten some hints up to this point, but with this issue, it’s all laid out so there’s no confusion at all.

While we learn more about the Whisperers, we also learn more about Negan himself. The man has a code and here it’s clear what that code and philosophy is. It’s very clear after this issue.

Writer Robert Kirkman lays all of that out while giving us a lot of humor. Let’s face it, motormouth Negan dealing with a group of people who don’t talk is going to be entertaining. But it’s not all humor, there’s some heart too as Alpha is given her “scene” and we learn there’s more to her than the stern leader.

But, the issue is really about the ending. What happens isn’t surprising at all, it’s what’s said that makes you question so many actions these past few issues. I’m not spoiling it, but it shines a different light on the motivations behind a certain someone’s actions.

Kirkman as always is helped by Charlie Adlard, Stefano Gaudiano, and Cliff Rathburn, who form like Voltron to give us fantastic visuals as always. This issue is sparse on the backgrounds and details, and even gore, but every panel is key in setting the tone, the mood, and adding to the story through a character’s stance or the look on their face.

This is a key issue that should have fans buzzing. Where the series goes from here is anyone’s bet, because while the act committed could be seen a mile away, the why is a mystery that’s yet to come.

Story: Robert Kirkman Art: Charlie Adlard, Stefano Gaudiano, Cliff Rathburn
Story: 8.45 Art: 8.4 Overall: 8.45 Recommendation: Buy

Feeling the Pulse #10-11

The_Pulse_Vol_1_11Feeling the Pulse is a weekly issue by issue look at the follow-up series to Alias featuring Jessica Jones and a team of reporters at the Daily Bugle, who investigate and report on superhero related stories.  In this installment of Feeling the Pulse, I will be covering The Pulse #10-11 (2005) written by Brian Michael Bendis with issue 10 pencilled by Michael Lark, inked by Stefano Gaudiano, and colored by Pete Pantazis and issue 11 drawn by Michael Gaydos with colors from Matt Hollingsworth.

In The Pulse #10, writer Brian Michael Bendis and artists Michael Lark and Stefano Gaudiano tie the comic into yet another Marvel “event” and instead of the relatively self-contained Secret War, it’s House of M, a comic which really kickstarted the decade plus Marvel tradition of having a summer event that ties into virtually their entire publishing line. To jog everyone’s memory (Thank goodness for recap pages!), Scarlet Witch lost control of her reality warping powers in the famous or infamous “Avengers Disassembled” arc (also written by Bendis) and killed the Avengers Hawkeye, Ant-Man (Scott Lang), and her ex-husband Vision. After this, she flees to her father Magneto while Professor X gathers the X-Men (from Joss Whedon’s Astonishing X-Men run) and New Avengers to decide what to do with her and hopefully not killer. But this confrontation causes her powers to go into overdrive and create a whole new reality called House of M where mutants led by Magneto and his children rule the world, and humans are hated and feared. Wolverine and Layla Miller (A smart teenage mutant from Peter David’s X-Factor) remember the pre-House of M reality, and this leads to complications when Layla reminds the still living Hawkeye that he died in another reality.

And Hawkeye freaking out leads directly into The Pulse #10, which doesn’t feature Jessica Jones or Luke Cage, but focuses on Ben Urich, Kat Farrell, and the Daily Bugle, whose editor-in-chief is somehow Mystique. The issue opens with Kat Farrell investigating an explosion of a Stark Industries building, which Bishop, a bodyguard/PR guy for the House of Magnus, blames on a human using mutant growth hormone when Kat spots kinetic energy absorbing mutant Sebastian Shaw and members of SHIELD on the scene. Thinking she has a scoop, she brings it up at a newspaper meeting, but is deflected by her editor-in-chief, who is waiting for SHIELD to make a comment. Then, Kat gives Mystique a piece of her mind and has a heart to heart with Ben Urich about working within the system and occasionally breaking a big story. And while working late, the story happens as Hawkeye bursts in and starts to realize that there were two realities when a newspaper headline about his death turns to something about the House of Magnus memorial. And when he tries to show Kat Avengers Mansion, it turns out to be a memorial to mutants killed by Sentinels. Reality is flimsy, and it freaks him out. And in his freakout, he destroys the Sentinel memorial with exploding arrows, asks Kat to tell his story, and runs off. The issue kind of ends with a note to follow the rest of Hawkeye’s story in House of M proper. Sometimes event tie-ins can be really annoying.

The Pulse #11 takes us back to the friendly haunts of Earth-616 as well as reuniting Bendis with Alias artist Michael Gaydos and colorist Matt Hollingsworth for the final arc “Fear” before cancellation. And they give us an excellent character-driven story with a B-plot featuring a Z-list superhero and the Daily Bugle journalists that wouldn’t be out of place in Alias. Also, Gaydos just plain understands how Jessica Jones looks as a character and her reactions to things, like when she is scared, being sarcastic, or just being happy. The Pulse #11 focuses on her taking a trip to the Baxter Building, seeing how the superest of moms Sue Richards deals with having kids and superpowers, and then going to lunch with her and Carol Danvers. Their conversations are raw, honest, and kind of read like What to Expect When You’re Expecting, but with superheroes. And while Jessica is lunching, Ben Urich is investigating an interesting case of a smelly, out of breath superhero, who looked like Daredevil in his original yellow costume , helping stop the robbery of a store way out of Hell’s Kitchen. Kat Farrell identifies him as D-Man, a wrestler turned superhero and former Avenger, thanks to his “Wolverine hat”, which is what cowls should be called from now on. And it turns out that he took more than just a bottle of water from the store. The Pulse #11 concludes with Janet Van Dyne working on redesigning Luke Cage’s costume because he’s now a New Avenger when Jessica’s water breaks.

KatWrites

In characterization and art, The Pulse #10 isn’t a bad read as Kat Farrell is the lead character for the first time in the series. Her tenacity and willingness to tell the truth, snap a cellphone pic, and break a story even in the face of a mutant, who has both telepathic and energy absorbing abilities are on full display this issue. It’s also a subtle inversion of her role in the main universe The Pulse series as Ben Urich is the one courting controversy, hiding Daredevil’s secret identity, and possibly taking down Nick Fury while Kat is more willing to play ball with editorial. In this issue, Ben is the one giving Kat a mini-lecture about picking battles and working with Mystique until they can really blow the whole Magnus regime open. Artists Michael Lark and Stefano Gaudiano with colorist Pete Pantazis even give us a glimpse at the writing process with a double page spread that cuts between the dusty Daily Bugle archives, and Kat desperately trying to churn out a story. Her computer has a slight glow in the dark building and will remind anyone of that burning feeling you get in your eyes when you’re trying to beat a deadline the night before.

SooWeak

However, the story of Kat Farrell intrepid journalist comes to a halt halfway through the issue and becomes the tale of Hawkeye Crossover Event Explainer Man. He doesn’t even let Kat get in a word edgewise, threatens her with his arrows, and blabbers on about what’s happened to him in the previous issues of House of M. There is a payoff to all the chatter, which isn’t bad to read as Bendis makes Clint a real salt of the Earth fellow as he quips about only reading the sports page of the newspaper, with the earlier mentioned destruction of the Sentinel memorial, but the issue just ends. There’s no reflection on Kat’s part just a silent scene as the police pull up. It’s like this House of M tie-in was supposed to be a two-parter with Kat writing the story in the second half and trying to get it past editorial, but it only ended up being one issue. It’s an example of what not to do with an event tie-in as Bendis and Lark set up story-worthy themes, like the difference between journalism and PR, and intriguing situations, like Mystique being interested in print media for some reason (She’s been a high school principal too so this isn’t her weirdest form of employment.), but fail to explore them and just explain the events of the main series.

LukeCostume

But, if The Pulse #10 has you down, The Pulse #11 is the breath of freshest air. And one thing that surprised about me is the comedic timing of Michael Gaydos despite his rougher hewn style compared to say, this series’ original artist Mark Bagley. And it’s on display from the opening page where Jessica Jones can go right up to see the Fantastic Four in the Baxter Building after being escorted out by security back when she needed their help in Alias with the FF’s receptionist still having that creepy rictus. Next, there is his and Bendis’ riff on the fights between the Thing and Human Torch that seemed to happen during Stan Lee and Jack Kirby’s run on Fantastic Four. Gaydos’ realistic style shows the serious side of their battle as the Thing almost falls into a very pregnant Jessica Jones (who is saved by a last second force field from Sue Richards). But it ends being a great set-up for a line by Sue about Franklin and Valeria being more well-behaved than these grown men and superheroes in their twenties and thirties. And the comedy comes back in the final pages as Gaydos nails Luke’s painful reactions to the various superhero costumes that Janet Van Dyne is trying to interest him in as Carol and Jessica giggle in the background. It’s also a larger meta joke about Luke Cage not having an iconic costume since his days as the tiara wearing, yellow silk shirt sporting Power Man back in the 1970s and just wearing jeans and a t-shirt in Bendis’ New Avengers run. (Maybe Sanford Greene will change this in his Power Man and Iron Fist run.

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The lunch with Jessica Jones, Carol Danvers, and Sue Richards is another showcase of Brian Michael Bendis’ ability to craft characters through dialogue and conversation. Gaydos’ faces are key too as he can do subtle really well, like Jessica spacing out when Sue gets a little bit too earnest about the Fantastic Four’s mission, and how her children “live a life without superficial judgment”. But most of their talk is dealing with the cold, harsh realities of motherhood, and Sue doesn’t sugarcoat things for Jessica saying that her superhero status could leave to villain attacks and kidnapping and that it’s super freaky to be entrusted to take care of another human life. But in the end it’s all worth it, and Jessica is actually pretty refreshed to see how “normal” the Richards kids are as Franklin adorably touches her pregnant stomach and gets scolded for saying “butt”. Bendis continues his tradition of writing mothers well (Aunt May in Ultimate Spider-Man comes to mind.) and gives Sue a warm voice as she loves her kids, but also can get exasperated by them. It’s unfortunate that the Fantastic Four and their family dynamic is one team he hasn’t been unable to write so far.

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And because this is a comic about journalism and not just Jessica Jones, Bendis and Gaydos give us a pretty interesting journalism subplot about Ben Urich and Kat Farrell investigating the re-emergence of D-Man as a vigilante and thief. Gaydos and Hollingsworth initially sell that this is a Daredevil story by using plenty of shadows in the art as well as touch of red in the background as a gun goes off. But, then there’s a cut to D-Man ambling around the store with his gut hanging out and moving a little slower than the Man without Fear. The store owners that he save don’t paint the most flattering picture of him saying that he had a smell and took some jewelry. And thus begins Ben Urich’s investigation into superheroes, who don’t have the benefit of a well-paying job as a lawyer or the sponsorship of a billionaire philanthropist or bald guy.

The Pulse  #10-11 features one example of how not to write a tie-in for a company-wide and one example of how to tell use superheroes to tell a story about a real life situation in this case, becoming a mother. It encapsulates the uneven nature of The Pulse as a series, which didn’t know if it wanted to tell Jessica Jones stories or and found a balance between both in the “Fear” arc just as it was being cancelled. At least, the art is consistent with Michael Lark, Stefano Gaudiano, and Michael Gaydos finding a sweet spot between realism and cartooning with a side of natural facial expressions and the awkwardness of superhero costumes. (Honestly, only George Perez, Jack Kirby, and the animators of Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes can pull off the “Purple H” Hawkeye costume.)

Review: The Walking Dead #150

THE WALKING DEAD #150 1Rick Grimes finds himself… BETRAYED.

Here it is, the big 150th issue of The Walking Dead, arguably, the most successful indie comic ever. Writer Robert Kirkman has been building up to something, lets face it he has a pattern in his storytelling.

For some time now, the series has had Rick dealing with their new nemesis the Whisperers, a group of individuals who wear walker skin and walk among them. There’s still unrest over Rick’s wavering and taking time as to what he wants to do in response. Some want war. Some want something smarter.

Last issue had Rick seeking out the advice of his rival Negan who of course is rather Machiavellian in his advice. What is Rick to do?

We have our answer here, as a decision is made, but not before he can be betrayed by some of his own people.

Saying that isn’t a spoiler at all, but what happens is pretty brutal and feels realistic. Rick has been a bit of a pacifist post Negan, and there’s absolutely been valid questions if he’s lost his edge and willingness to fight. Here we see classic Rick, badass, and a leader.

The comic isn’t as shock and awe as I expected, a much more muted experience from issue 100. But, what it does do is set up the next phase of The Walking Dead. The next phase too is new in many ways, and I’m sure will up the philosophical debate that has been occurring for some time in the series.

The art by Charlie Adlard with inks by Stefano Gaudiano, and gray tones by Cliff Rathburn is the usual solid visuals. The brutality of the fight Rick goes through, and the act he commits is captured fantastically. It’s black and white, but in your mind you can see the blood he’s drenched in.

This issue has a lot more going for it, but it’s really about the next phase of Rick’s leadership, and I’m convinced things won’t go smoothly. I’m expecting there to be debates about dictatorships, and possibly fascist leadership, we can see some of that already. Kirkman dioesn’t really gives us as many shocks as he has in the past, but he has set the series on a more mature adult path for at least a little while.

Story: Robert Kirkman Art: Charlie Adlard Ink: Stefano Gaudiano Gray Tones: Cliff Rathburn
Story: 8.1 Art: 8.4 Overall: 8.2 Recommendation: Buy

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

The Walking Dead Gets Three Variants to Celebrate #150

To commemorate the 150th issue of The Walking Dead, Image/Skybound has enlisted the talents of veteran artists Jason Latour, Tony Moore and Ryan Ottley for three special variant covers in addition to the previously revealed Charlie Adlard cover and blank sketch variant. Additional credits for The Walking Dead #150 include Stefano Gaudiano (inks), Cliff Rathburn (tones), and Rus Wooton (lettering). This special extra-sized anniversary issue will be available in stores on January 13th.

The Walking Dead #150, Cover A by Adlard & Stewart (Diamond code: NOV150561*), Cover B sketch variant (Diamond code: NOV150562*), Cover C by Latour (Diamond code: OCT158896*), Cover D by Moore (Diamond code:OCT158897*), and Cover E by Ottley (Diamond code OCT158898*) will hit comic book stores on Wednesday, January 13th. The final order cutoff deadline for comic book retailers is Monday, December 21st.

*This cover is fully orderable.

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