The following review of Walking Dead #102, by Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard, published tomorrow is intended to be a spoiler-free review. However it is likely that some aspects, themes and concepts may be spoiled in the telling. But if you haven’t read #101 yet, be especially warned.
This is the final part of Something To Fear. We left last month’s issue with our troop, down one member but with a hostage in hand against Negan and his men. And suddenly the tone is very different.
This is not a rally-the-troops issue, this is not a work-with-what-we-have plan, this is not an attempt to regroup, reroute, take the attack to the aggressor. This is something else.
There’s a common statement in government “we do not negotiate with terrorists”. Usually said while officials are actually engaged in secret diplomatic talks with the representatives of said terrorists. “Never give up, never surrender” is also more than a Galaxy Quest slogan. As George W Bush once said, “bring it on!”. Fear is to be beaten , fear is to be opposed, fear is to be conquered.
A lot of people are going to find The Walking Dead #102 rather uncomfortable. Because at its heart it is going against these all-American values. It is about realising an impossible situation and seeking a pragmatic solution. It is about surrendering to fear, to terror. It is about giving in and running away, so that one might live to run away another day.Or is it?
Zombies are an afterthought here, the humans are the clear and present danger, who have engaged in shock and awe and have as a result subdued the enemy. There are battles to fought, wars to be won, but those it seems are for another day…
Walking Dead #102 by Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard is published by Image Comics tomorrow.