Aug 10, 2009

The Walking Dead, Vol 1 Review

Image taken from
cover art by Tony Moore

The Walking Dead: Volume 1 - Days Gone Bye is the tale of Officer Rick Grimes, a small-time policeman from Kentucky, who after taking a bullet on the line of duty awakes from a coma to find the world ravaged and mostly isolated from a zombie holocaust. Being a resourceful and intelligent man with combat skills to boot, Grimes manages to survive his escape from the hospital, which is a pretty big hot-spot for the flesh-eaters. The story follows Rick as he searches for other survivors and attempts to make sense of what's happened.

The art in this book (or at least mine, they might have other versions that are different) is in completely black and white. Everything is penned, so details revolve heavily on lines and shadows. While this really adds grit to the scenes, and is very well done, it might not be for everyone, just like a black and white movie. Then again, Sin City the movie did quite well and gained a large fan base, so many it depends on the context for the casual consumer.

While character development is tremendous in this book, and action at times can be really fingernail biting, other parts of this book bother me. This is actually a criticism I have with most zombie media - so many of the scenes and formats are recycled over and over. It can all become very desensitizing, but I really can't say enough about character development. If put into a different, more unique environment, I'd definitely buy into this comic a lot more.

Overall Rating: I live in a world of cover, and with every breath-taking, full-color cover of issues of this comic, I find that the black and white really hurts things. The story is incredibly strong, but can only raise the rating to 4 *'s. It's definitely worth taking a look at, as many people consider it to be one of the greatest comic series/graphic novel series of all time, but it's mainly interested me in seeing what the creators could do with a different comic.

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