Saturday, May 22, 2010

Review: The Walking Dead 72

Non Spoiler Review:
The current storyline continues to unfold slowly, with a growing sense of menace, and I'm still unsure what direction this is going to take. As last issue ended, Rick was commenting how simple it would be to take the settlement away from Douglas and his people, and in typical soap opera fashion, there's Douglas coming up the steps. Did he hear them or not?

The rest of the issue focuses on a party hosted by Douglas for everyone to get to know one another before they head out to start their various jobs in the safe zone.

Spoilers Now!
This issue allowed more of the domestic themes to develop. There are still no zombies to be seen, as the action continues to take place entirely within Alexandria. Everyone gets settled into their knew roles—Michonne hangs up her sword over her fireplace, giving us a a series of flashbacks of its more memorable moments, and she vows not to use it again.

Glen and Maggie are having some domestic disputes over Glen being put on supply runs to Washington D.C. Douglas, meanwhile, hits on Andrea, who rebuffs him, despite his claim of being in a purely political, loveless marriage (whatever that could mean at this point, given a complete lack of political necessity). What would be the point of that in this community?

Douglas' meet-and-greet further explores the cracks in their little society. Rick notices one of the children has a black eye in the company of his parents. Michonne loses it on the women who are overly concerned they will bake her something she won't like. And Andrea finds out she's been chatting with Douglas' adult son (awk-WARD!). Glen gets outrageously drunk and has to be escorted home. Abraham is reticent to go back outside the fence to help expand the community. Carl, as usual, is having a terrible time adjusting.

Only after Rick takes the kids home and checks in on Glen do we find out Glen wasn't drunk at all, but on a recon mission to ensure they can take back their weapons when the time comes to do so, and this issue leaves us with a second ominous glare from Rick, who has orchestrated the whole thing.

What I liked:
Some might complain that the pace of the book is moving too slow, but it's working for me. After dozens of issues that have been moving at a frantic pace, it's nice to have the characters enjoy a respite, and it also serves to develop the menace of the town. As Rick puts it, the characters are getting to enjoy domestic problems...something they have not been allowed to do since they left their previous settlement. That could pose trouble, though, as the various complex relationships helped to tear their previous home apart.

I'm still musing over Rick's love prospects. At some points it seems he and Michonne are flirting, but he and Andrea share the oldest relationship of the group so far.

Confrontation is inevitable—the inhabitants have themselves become virtual zombies in their false society, and it's not going to take much to break it apart when the time comes. There is still lots to be revealed. It looks like next issue will deal with everyone going off to start their respective jobs.

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