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Horror at its best, THE
WALKING DEAD: NO WAY OUT (Image Comics) continues the long-running riveting
character drama and compelling survival tale. Even as hope dwindles and
characters lose faith, the last thread of humanity struggles to exist in a
zombie apocalypse. This volume collects issues #79-84, which capture genuine
emotion, suspenseful sequences in unbelievably over-the-top situations.
The frightened residents
of a gated community wrestle with the realization that either way, there is no
escape for them. If someone takes a risk and leaves their fortified residence,
the zombie horde will eventually kill them. If they stay inside, their minds
will go crazy with claustrophobia. The barricade is the only thing that
separates the humans from the undead and Sheriff Rick Grimes questions how long
these walls will actually stand.
Food is scarce but not a
priority as the snow begins to fall. What Rick and the others have is very
little time to prepare themselves for the worst, and as the only law
enforcement around, Rick must keep everyone secure while not falling into panic
Creator and author Robert
Kirkman focuses on the emotional relationships between the central protagonists
as this particular storyline contains a major look at the bond between father
and son. Carl attempts to emulate Rick, who is desperately trying his best to
be a great leader. Subsequently, when Carl is severely wounded, Rick loses
control and lashes out at the roamers. Even through so much loss and despair,
Kirkman reinforces the message of hope, and the unbreakable human spirit.
As penciler and inker,
Charlie Adlard's artwork sets the appropriately dreary mood. As one character
uses his dying breath to teach life lessons to Carl, mistaking him for his own
son, Adlard’s close and detailed work packs an emotional wallop. On the other
end, the splash page with Rick and his team, exhausted and drenched in blood
after their battle with the roamers, will stick in your mind after one glance.
THE WALKING DEAD: NO WAY
OUT is a truly epic effort. Kirkman and Aldard are still hitting all the right
notes of a great zombie story; one you shouldn’t be missing out on.
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