Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Comic Time - Part 1 - The Walking Dead

Garage sale season has all but come to a complete halt. There will soon be snow on the ground, and no sane person is going to sit in their lawn or garage all day hoping to sell their junk. The holidays are approaching, and everyone is busy this time of year. Unfortunately, that leaves me without many opportunities to find any games except for what is available in retail stores. Except for random trips to the thrift store (coupled with some last minute luck) my finds will be pretty dry until April or so. I will of course still be purchasing new games, but my retro collection will stagnate a bit for the foreseeable future.

Since I've expanded the blog to include my action figure sales and finds, I figure I might as well go full nerd with you guys and include my monthly comic purchases and some more reviews as well. I've also tossed around the dangerous idea of purchasing some KidRobot blind boxes and posting the results...I tend to get out of hand with collecting stuff, so I'm glad there isn't a store nearby with these readily available. I'm somewhat magnetized to urban/street art, and a lot of these collectable toys are very appealing to me...we'll see.

Anyway, considering Halloween is right around the corner, I figured I should probably start with the Walking Dead series. I'm not big into comics, I only regularly read 3 different series'. The Walking Dead was the second series I started reading. It happens to be extremely convenient to pick up on. The first 96 comics are available in 2 giant "compendiums". Volume One collecting numbers 1-48, and the second volume collecting numbers 49-96. These monster books provide hours of reading and almost completely catch you up to the most recent release (115). As you can see, I have paired my compendiums with two trade paperbacks (specifically volumes 17 and 18) to catch up to the monthly releases beginning at number 109.

The folks over at Image Comics do a very punctual job of releases these volumes, and they are generally available within a month or two of the last issue published from that specific story arc. I'm too impatient to wait 6-7 months for a new volume to come out, so I started to buy the comics monthly with my other regular purchases. Individual monthly comics run at a mere $2.99 each and include a little bit of extra content compared to the bi-annual paperback releases.

If you are a thrifty shopper and have a Playstation 3, you can pick up the collectors edition of The Walking Dead by Telltale Games from Amazon for around $65 (used). This includes a special edition of the first compendium as well as the adventure game from Telltale. I highly suggest going this route if you don't have either one already (it unfortunately was announced about 2 weeks after I had purchased my volume one compendium, and well after I had already purchased and played the game in episodes from the PSN store). The game is really fun and provides an awesome story. "Season 2" of the game is launching soon as well. Unfortunately if you only have an Xbox 360, it looks like you'll be paying immensely more for this collectors edition than you would purchasing the items separately.
Starting October 9th, the next volume to be collected began and is dubbed "All Out War". Without giving anything away, I'll just say that this is the conclusion to a larger story that has been building for quite some time now. Fans of the show who think The Governor was the embodiment of evil are in for a surprise when the new villain is introduced. This All Out War series is the culmination of a lot of hatred and careful planning - I'm very excited to see what happens over the next few issues. I guess this marks the 10 year anniversary of the Walking Dead comic series, so I'm sure something significant is going to happen! It is also worth noting that this 12 issue long arc will be released bi-monthly (thats 2 per month) after the holidays. That is double the Walking Dead we usually get - so this is a great opportunity to hop on!

One thing I feel I should address is the comparison to the TV show. Just because you enjoy the show, you might not enjoy the comic - and vice-versa. I originally picked up the comic because I quite enjoyed the show, but now I find my distaste for the show is overwhelming due to having read the comic. Of course things in print can move faster than they can in film. I also realize the comic has been running for 10 years, and the show doesn't want to catch up to the comic too quickly. However, the soap opera feel of the TV show is too much for me. Things move far too slowly, and key plot points have been butchered. I understand each one is independent from the other, but significant things that should have (or not have) happened in the show feel like they are going to ruin the future of the storyline. It is also worth mentioning that the comic is extremely brutal - even in black and white. The comic is a lot more unforgiving and raw than the TV show, and I can see some people being offended by things that Hollywood chose to leave out. While the show is rated TV-MA, the comic goes a bit further. I don't think I'd have an issue with a teen or tween watching AMC's the Walking Dead, but I would definitely have to think twice about giving the comic to anyone under 15. It is pretty graphic, and I say that as a person who isn't very easily offended.

In conclusion, I definitely suggest anyone considering getting into the Walking Dead should go for it. Christmas is coming - add the first Compendium in your letter to Santa. I bet after reading those first 48 issues, you'll be buying the second Compendium as soon as your wallet allows. The internet is calling "All Out War" the biggest story to ever happen so far in the Walking Dead...this is an excellent time to start reading the book!

No comments:

Post a Comment