December 28, 2008

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The Walking Dead Volume 1

Written by Robert Kirkman
Illustrated by Tony Moore
Image Comics

I have to admit, reading through the start of this one, I felt like maybe it was a rare swing and miss by Kirkman. For the majority of this book, there does not appear to be anything interesting going on that hasn't been done to death in zombie stories. It was interesting enough, don't get me wrong, but I expect more of Kirkman than the standard offering.

However, as the story progresses, the things that make Kirkman a good storyteller--dialog and dramatic tension within established frameworks--start to shine through and by the ending of the first volume, we're in a whole new realm of story, thanks to Kirkman's guidance.

Our hero is a cop who was in the hospital, and wakes to find the world gone zombie. He's slow--honestly too slow--on the uptake, but he ends up in Atlanta, reunited with some people he thought possibly lost forever. They're doing just fine in zombieland, all things considered but how long can it last? The answer, as you might expect, is not very much longer.

Hope versus panic is very much in play here and that's where this one shines. As the pages go by, the sense of despair really creeps up on the reader. I don't have a lot to say about this one because it is almost all set up work, but I like where the storyline is going, I like the idea of a comic that will take its time--though I worry this one may plod just a bit too much--to fully explore the life of its characters. Definitely worth reading, though please stick with it if you find yourself a bit bored in the early going. it's definitely worth it.