Brandon Borzelli’s Geek Goggle Reviews
Walking Dead #80
Kirkman, Adlard & Rathburn
The much hyped arc entitled ‘No Way Out’ begins this issue with an interesting focus for the story. The issue sets up the overall problem of being surrounded by the zombies well enough but it mainly deals with subplots making the issue unique compared to other big arc openers in this series. It’s another solid issue in a series that never lets up and never ceases to surprise the reader.
As seen in the previous issue, the gated community’s front wall becomes overrun with zombies. The suspicion from the last issue was confirmed in the opening to this book which is that a zombie herd has found the front door. We’ve seen a zombie herd in previous issues but this is different because the group is essentially trapped. The problem becomes more complex because not everyone was inside the gate when the herd hit full force.
Not only was there a crew outside the wall, walking the perimeter when the herd attacked, but Andrea, the sharpshooter, was in the tower outside the wall. The cleanup crew fights to get back inside the wall before the herd is able to break in. Andrea has no such option. She is stranded in the tower.
A staple of this series has always been the death of characters, new, old, enemy or fan favorite. This arc gives the appearance that some death is imminent. A solid guess would be that Andrea is on the chopping block. How much food can she possibly have in that tower? How long will it be before anyone in the community can leave or attempt to rescue her? All that said and a character does die in this issue.
One of Charlie Adlard’s best drawings in this series was the double page spread of the first zombie herd. He essentially drew a sea of zombies in an open field. Sadly, this issue doesn’t have room for any sort of duplication of that amazing image. The herd seems like only a couple of dozen zombies stacked up against the wall. It’s just not the same visual. Another challenge with this story when it is bridged to the art is the larger cast makes for unknown or unfamiliar faces. There are too many characters that are fairly new that look too much alike. Adlard provides the usual emotion and reaction in the close ups of his characters. As always, it adds life to the dialogue.
‘No Way Out’ manages to, again, present the group with an impossible situation. The subplots make the issue move along nicely with some folks cracking up, new couples forming bounds and some tough talk from the little ones. There’s a lot to like in this issue and it all adds up to a great opening to this arc.
4 out of 5 Geek Goggles