Inside Pulse 12

Image Comics Review & Spoilers: The Walking Dead #150 By Robert Kirkman, Charlie Adlard, Stefano Gaudiano, Cliff Rathburn. You Don’t Know The Half Of It!!

WALKING DEAD #150 review spoilers 1The WALKING DEAD #150

Creator & Writer: Robert Kirkman
Penciler: Charlie Adlard

Inker: Stefano Gaudiano

Gray Tones: Cliff Rathburn

Letterer: Rus Wooton

Main Cover: Charlie Adlard

Main Cover colours: Dave Stewart

Variant Covers: Jason LaTour; Tony Moore; Ryan Ottley

Publisher: Skybound/Image Comics
Cover Price: $2.99

“Betrayed” (30 pages) [B&W]

 

FULL DISCLOSURE: I never read a single issue of this series until today!! Scout’s Honor!! Luckily, it was painless. I didn’t need to deal with one hundred and forty-nine issues of backstory, furiously trying to catch up. *phew*

 FULL DISCLOSURE #2: I had to consult the Walking Dead Wikia to clear my confusion about similarly-drawn characters.

Dwight, former leader of the Saviors, leaves the Sanctuary upsetting some of the residents. Laura rides after him. He thinks she will try to persuade him to return. She surprises him by stating that she will accompany him.

WALKING DEAD #150 Dwight in flightRick relays his latest stratagem to Eugene — a full-fledged army is necessary to ward off the Whisperers once and for all. Eugene is elated at the plan.

Rick is ambushed by two hooded individuals. They definitely aren’t his followers nor his fans. Rick is at a sore disadvantage. One of the attackers is quickly revealed. He puts back his hood and continues the beats by using Rick’s cane. Norton is relentless in his rage.

WALKING DEAD #150 ambush

WALKING DEAD #150 push in the wrong direction

WALKING DEAD #150 cowardly crackThe other attacker, Vincent, luckily has a conscience. He tackles his comrade-in-arms. Norton resents Rick for being a talker rather than a man of action. Norton reminds Vincent that the loss of his son and Vincent’s wife is enough justification. Vincent only wanted to spook Rick, not commit murder. Norton is so dead-set at carrying out his task that he overpowers Vincent.

WALKING DEAD #150 regret

WALKING DEAD #150 knocking some senseHe hovers over Rick to pick up his cane when CHOMP!!! Rick goes for the jugular. Like a Doberman Pinscher, he doesn’t release until his quarry is lifeless.

WALKING DEAD #150 one more blow

WALKING DEAD #150 going for the jugularVincent runs off in shame, regret, and terror. Rick passes out.

WALKING DEAD #150 bitter victoryA brief interlude has Andrea stumbling upon Rick’s son Carl having sex with Lydia while making the rounds at the Hilltop mansion. Lydia puts her hand across Carl’s gaping eye socket. Andrea quietly walks away.

Maggie ends up finding the bloodied and beaten Rick. The former constable comes to at Dr. Carson’s home. He beckons Michonne. He sets her on a mission to find Vincent.

WALKING DEAD #150 dazed

WALKING DEAD #150 go get 'im MichonneRick has to face the people. Literally!! Even if he doesn’t look his best, he realizes that hiding and being afraid are not feasible and only crippling the Safe-Zoners.

WALKING DEAD #150 facing the crowdRick comes completely clean with the others. He still feels fear but a more aggressive stance must be taken. He took the betrayal of “two of our own” hard [no pun intended!] but he sees the logic in it. Dwight and Laura walk in on the assembly. Michonne brings in the traitor. Was there ever any doubt she would succeed?

WALKING DEAD #150 hot pursuitI had a lump in my throat thinking that Rick was going to return the favour. Instead, he extends his hand and forgives his transgressor. In-fighting will only diminish their numbers. He shares his idea of establishing a military unit to all parties present. He vows to hunt and kill the Whisperers.

WALKING DEAD #150 forgivenessRick’s words resonate with the crowd. They chant his name, fists in the air, ready to follow and fight. Negan hears the commotion from his cell. He lets out a super smug smile.

WALKING DEAD #150 rallied 2

WALKING DEAD #150 smugI finally jumped on the bandwagon!! After a little over a dozen years of constant buzz, my curiosity got the better. There I am truthful. However, I was also asked to review this issue since it is a milestone. Robert Kirkman projects the entire saga to run three hundred issues. If that is indeed the case, this is the halfway mark. I was mildly curious about this pop culture staple and almost began viewing the live-action series when it first dropped in 2010 but never increased my interest in it. I bought #100 when it hit the shelves in July 2012. I did so simply for ‘investment’ purposes, meaning that I knew it was of great importance and value. I equate it to buying property while the price is right to sell for a profit. The real reason why I never began to read despite raving reviews from friends and colleagues was the dread of heading to ground zero and progressing from there. Upon considerable contemplation, a century and a half of issues is not nearly as intimidating as say six hundred proper issues and various spin-offs of X-MEN.

It is mind-boggling the amount of attention, admiration, and flat-out worship this modern mythology has garnered. Mr. Kirkman revived the zombie genre [natch!]. I have expressed time and again my disinterest and dislike in the animated corpses. Speaking of which, I was disappointed that nary a one showed its rotting flesh for this momentous occasion. I also assumed that someone had to kick the bucket. For a few pages, I actually thought Rick’s number was up. I’m glad I was proven wrong.

Betrayal is the most unpleasant human experience. As social creatures, it is crucial to form, maintain, and nurture relationships. Betrayal is the bitterest of pills. It occurs threefold: Dwight ditches his people with Laura in tow; the obvious attack from Vincent and Norton; Rick let down himself and his group with doubt, hesitancy, and inaction.

Charlie Adlard has been on board for the last one hundred and forty-four issues. That is a record-breaker!! He was not one of the originals but like Captain America when he joined the Avengers, he has been the mainstay, the backbone, the major support. I never had the opportunity to examine his art until now.

WALKING DEAD #150 review spoilers 4His pencils are vivid, especially the three full pages and the double-page spread. That’s one-sixth of pure gloriousness for this extra-sized issue. Every panel is perfectly square. Even from a distance, I felt immersed as if I were viewing the live-action series but set in the 1950’s with the B&W background. Due to my ignorance, I thought that Dwight was the same man on page four. Instead it was Eugene. Thanks again, Walking Dead Wikia!! I also wrongly believed Carl to be Dwight. Boy, was I way off!! Rick looks even more grizzled with his roughed-up face. Not only has he saved his skin with the major battles, he came out relatively unscathed with the minor uprising. Michonne is my new fave female. I’ve always gravitated towards strong women >_<

WALKING DEAD #150 review spoilers 2No line is ignored by Stefano Gaudiano: from the creases on the forehead, to the stubble, to the freckles on Andrea’s face, and the caked-on blood decorating Rick’s countenance.

It amazes me how much detail is inserted into the most basic of colour schemes. One is able to see more clearly when there is black, white, or gray. It’s akin to developing the other four senses when the fifth is lost.

WALKING DEAD #150 review spoilers 6Cliff Rathburn also gets the highest recognition. He has been committed to this title for the exact same amount as Mr. Adlard. The shadows heighten my curiosity. They make me wonder about the concealment. Norton and Vincent resemble modern phantoms with their faces completely enshrouded by the hoodies. The pure black panels appropriately reflect Rick’s unconscious state but also signify darker days ahead, like these people haven’t had plenty!!

Rus Wooton throws in enough sound effects. I cringed at every single hit that was delivered to Rick. I wanted to crack open Norton’s skull. The words are enlarged and bolded where necessary.

Crack open the champagne. Clink your glasses. One special achievement with this anniversary is the return of Tony Moore, TWD’s co-creator and original artist!!! The hatchet was buried between him and Mr. Kirkman. Mr. Moore was gracious enough to illustrate a variant cover. This will have the fans more frenzied than the hordes of the undead. In the bleakest of worlds, there is always a bright spot.

WALKING DEAD #150 review spoilers 3I’m not just paying lip service here. My ‘forced’ exposure has piqued my interest. I’m wanting to learn more about every single all-too-human character in this tapestry of survival in a post-apocalyptic world. I love how methodical Mr. Kirkman is in organizing every arc into six parts even if those spill over to others. Thus, he has created a perfect round number: twenty-five volumes times six chapters apiece equals one hundred and fifty memorable tales. I rate this issue with a skill-testing question: 25 x 6 ÷ 3.5 = ___. {OK! Fine!! The answer is nine (9)!!!}

Many thanks to two hard-working guys at my local comic shop. One gave me an extensive run-down on the major characters and events; the other explained thoroughly the difference between the distinct art techniques.

Gotham Central ad 2015 feat. Deadpool

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