Archive for Horror Comic Book

Tim from Last Week Reviews: Criminal Macabre – A Cal McDonald Mystery #1!

Posted in Review with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 4, 2016 by Tim from Last Week

Story: Steve NilesCriminal Macabre #1 cover
Art: Ben Templesmith
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Released: 4/20/2001 (collected 8/2011)

Steve Niles is well-known for his horror comic writing, as well as work outside of comics. He has written Spawn, Spawn: Dark Ages, and Hellspawn for Image Comics; 30 Days of Night (et. al.) for IDW Publishing; Batman: Gotham County Line and The Creeper for DC Comics; as well as writing the script for Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment’s F.E.A.R.3 video game.

Ben Templesmith has created the art for some of comics’ creepiest titles, including Hellspawn, Hatter M, Fell, and Ten Grand for Image Comics; 30 Days of Night (et. al.) and Silent Hill for IDW Publishing; Gotham By Midnight for DC Comics; as well as art for Steve Jackson Games, Wizards of the Coast, and White Wolf Game Studios.

The cover of this book starts us off right. If this is your first exposure to Ben Templesmith’s art, get used to it: he creates some creepy art. Here, we see Cal McDonald, our “hero,” with a shotgun in his hand, blood on his chest, and a creepy dude (vampire?/demon?/something?) over his shoulder. The city is dark and gritty behind them, so I’m thinking things are bad.

It seems it’s been bad for Cal since childhood, when he found a headless body, and it’s only gotten worse from there. Cal headed west, to L.A., to try to stop monsters. Regular old, nasty, monsters. Cal works with some undead folks to battle the demons, werewolves, vampires, whatever.

The book opens with Cal telling some cops “what went done”, and they don’t believe his tales. Turns out Cal has some addictions, and some history, and the cops don’t really like him. As Cal tells his tale, we see it. Seems he was working a vampire case (cops couldn’t figure out why some college students were dead and missing their blood…). He gets some info, grabs his gear, and heads on out. As it turns out, there are beasties everywhere. Some are just trying to get through life, like us. Cal knows them all, but he’s most comfortable with the ones who lurk around the shadows. They don’t really make trouble, and they don’t tend to be noticed. Cal tracks his vampire, but his rules dictate he can’t just kill the baddie in front of the world. After lifting his wallet, he hopes to track the vamp home (to kill him), but notices another address while checking the I.D. When he gets to the address, he fights his own urges to bolt and get high, even though the gig doesn’t feel right. Cal’s vampire and some friends are talking inside, but he’s surprised to see different types of monsters, together. Instead of running scared, Cal pumps some adrenaline, and ends up interrupting the bad guys. Some monsters escape, some end up bloody, and Cal ends up with little information.

Time passes, and some beasties break into a lab (with the security codes…), to steal a chemical. They efficiently dispose of the records of their passing, but don’t kill the guard. When the police arrive, they find out that a rare strain of black plague was stolen. Records show it never killed anyone, but legend says it wiped out a town in the 1300s. Evidence indicates werewolves, but the crime doesn’t fit the wolves’ m.o.: hunting and killing. Cal stumbles home, hoping to dull the pain with his various vices, but ends up finding his ghoul friend, Mo’lock, in his place. Mo’lock informs Cal that the city’s ghouls want Cal’s help to solve a mysterious attack, so Cal and Mo’lock go deep into the sewers to talk to a gathering of ghouls.

So, I like Cal McDonald. He’s not a great guy, so far, but he is doing what he can do to keep the worst of the worst from damaging the normal way of life. Not that he gets to live that life, and not that he’s necessarily doing it out of love for people; just an obligation, a job. But, he’s also not just a random monster hunter, who kills just to kill. Bad guys may need to go down, but if you’re not a bad monster, it looks like he’ll leave you alone. Seems like a solid plan. This is not my first exposure to Steve Niles. I read all of his old Spawn work when it came out. And, frankly, this was not as scary as his older stuff, but I like the fun nature of this work, much better. The Spawn books were trying to show how evil evil can be, and I think Criminal Macabre is trying to show that there is another side to what we traditionally think of as monsters. I like that treatment much better (Hell, that’s how I view people!).

So, Ben Templesmith is great at creating mood. A lot of it comes through in his color choices, but even regular people can feel creepy under his hand. During the police interrogation, you can tell everything you need to know about the cops just by how their faces appear. I love this stuff. Cal goes through minor transformations from scene to scene, sometimes looking tough, sometimes beat down, sometimes even a little wimpy, and that’s all about Ben’s work. And, of course, we get to see a bunch of different creatures, and his art sort of re-interprets some of the old looks that we generally associate with these monsters. However, through all of the color palette changes and all of the different looks for the characters, there is never a moment where you can think it’s not a dark and gloomy book. We are shown the underbelly of the city, and the only place to go is down.

I really enjoyed this comic, and I plan to read through the rest of the stories. This is the first part of a 5-issue mini-series, but there have been a bunch of mini-series published (mostly) by Dark Horse Comics, who also published the omnibus edition that I used for this review. Criminal Macabre Omnibus volume 1 contains 2 complete series, plus a one-shot story (Love Me Tenderloin), plus another complete series (Supernatural Freak Machine), totalling 392 pages, all for $24.99. There are 2 more Criminal Macabre Omnibuses available, containing 368 pages per volume, also $24.99 each.

Criminal Macabre, and other great comics, can be found at Johnny Destructo’s Hero Complex located at 4456 Main Street, Manayunk, PA 19127. Visit him on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/jdsherocomplex/

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Tim from Last Week Reviews: Locke & Key #1!

Posted in Review with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 15, 2016 by Tim from Last Week

Writer: Joe Hilllockekey#1
Artist: Gabriel Rodriguez
Colors: Jay Fotos
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Released: 2/20/2008 (collected in 10/2008)

Joe Hill has published both comic books and novels, and has received a fair amount of acclaim for his writing. Hill originally published his work under this pen name (a modified version of his real name) to avoid connecting him to his extremely popular father, who is known worldwide for his own writing. About a year before Lock & Key was published, Hill admitted that his father was Stephen King. However, after writing several books (20th Century Ghosts, Heart-Shaped Box, Horns, NOS4A2, and The Fireman), several comic books (Lock & Key, The Cape, and the new Tales from the Darkside series), and receiving several awards (World Fantasy Award, Bradbury Fellowship, Bram Stoker Award, British Fantasy Award, and International Horror Guild Award, among others…), it seems clear that Hill has been accepted into the writing community on his own merits.

Chilean-born artist Gabriel Rodriguez has a Master of Architecture, which he used to “pay the bills” while he waited for his chance to draw comic books. His first comic work was on the IDW published companion series to the popular CSI television series. He co-created Lock & Key with Joe Hill, then worked on Adventures of Superman (DC Comics) and Little Nemo: Return to Slumberland (IDW), the latter earning Rodriguez and co-creator Nelson Daniel an Eisner Award in 2015.

Lock & Key is a supernatural story focused on a house in Lovecraft, Massachusetts, and the family (and others) who have resided in the house. The comic begins with the Locke family, initially near San Francisco, working on their summer home. While Mr. and Mrs. Locke are inside, and the Locke children are outside, Sam and Al, former students of Mr. Locke’s, show up with plans to kill. The kids hear the gunshot that kills their father, and accidentally alert the killers to their presence. While Kinsey and Bode hide, the oldest Locke kid, Tyler, makes his way into the house, hoping to avert disaster. In the process, he disables Sam, and Mrs. Locke kills Al. Following the funeral, the remaining family travels back east to the family home, Keyhouse, and Uncle Duncan. As the kids explore their new home (they haven’t seen the house in years), we get to see that this house has a ton of history of its own, though, since most of it is shown to us by Bode, the youngest Locke, it doesn’t form a complete picture; just cool things every place he looks. Meanwhile, back in juvenile detention, it seems Sam is able to communicate with someone, or something, in the reflection of the water in his sink. It promises Sam that he’ll get the chance to try again to complete his mission. Back at Keyhouse, one of Bode’s discoveries is a key (featured on the comic cover). He finds a door with a similar look as the key, and opens it. We see Bode from the other side of the door, and, for a moment, his body collapses, and a wispy ghost form passes through the door. Quickly, he notices the change, and dives back into his body. Moments later, he wakes up. Terrified, he looks at the door. As it slams shut.

This series is a favorite of JD (of JD’s Hero Complex), and he has been suggesting it to customers for years. He was worried that I wouldn’t like it, since it’s not really my thing. However, I’m at least curious about what is going on at Keyhouse. Obviously, there is something about doors. And, keys (duh). I’m not sure if the doors steal your soul, or if the key is the key, but something is happening. And, why does the “whatever-it-is-in-Sam’s-sink” want Sam to make another attempt on the Lockes? Is Sam just a crazy killer? Or, is there some connection to Keyhouse, there, too?

As my first entry into Joe Hill, I have to say the story was interesting. There is obviously a lot going on that we don’t know, yet, and I want some answers. However, the issue feels a little jumbled, to me. There are a lot of flashbacks (or flash forwards, depending on your perspective, I guess). The story opens with Sam and Al at the door, and the Locke kids down the hill. Then, we move to the funeral, which includes a flashback to when Tyler was young. Then, back to the kids approaching the house during the attack, and some of Sam’s attempts to find the kids. Then, in the car on the way to Massachusetts, and their arrival at Keyhouse. Then, back to the house, as Sam finds Tyler and the whole sordid affair resolves. Then, back to Massachusetts. Although there are visual ways to track the story, I found the technique to be a little overused, and found myself getting tired, by the end. Hopefully, the storytelling will become a little easier on the brain in future parts.

This was also my first exposure to Gabriel Rodriguez’ art, and I’m intrigued. It has a blocky style, but it is also very detailed. Although I would not call it mainstream super-hero art, I almost have to say that his style could find a home in the new mainstream landscape at Marvel or DC, with their attempts to bring new styles and ideas into their current lineups. I’m looking forward to seeing where he ends up next.

Locke & Key turned out to be quite a story, taking 5 years to complete. Told over the course of 3 acts, each act told in two 6-issue mini-series, plus 2 book-end issues, plus a handful of short-story-type stories, Locke & Key is a story that spans generations and dimensions. This is an epic, and has a beginning, middle, and an end. The series was nominated for an Eisner Award in 2009, it won the British Fantasy Award for Best Comic or Graphic Novel in 2009, it won an Eisner Award for Best Writer (Joe Hill) in 2011 (and was also nominated for Best Single Issue, Best Continuing Series, and Best Penciller that same year), and it won the British Fantasy Award (again!) in 2012. A television pilot was filmed in 2011, though Fox decided not to pick up the series (even though Steven Spielberg and Dreamworks were involved…). A film trilogy was announced in 2014, but fell through, as well. In 2015, Joe Hill said that he was going back to the television series plan, and would shop it around to networks, acting as writer and executive producer. There is a 13-hour audio drama adapting all 6 mini-series, released in 2015, including voice work from such pop culture actors as Tatiana Maslany and Kate Mulgrew. And, yes, there is even a card game based on Locke & Key. Seriously, I think this little story might get some attention…

I read Locke & Key #1 as part of the first trade paperback collection, Locke & Key: Welcome to Lovecraft. Locke & Key is available in 6 trade paperbacks, as well as hardcover editions.

Locke & Key, and other great comics, can be found at Johnny Destructo’s Hero Complex located at 4456 Main Street, Manayunk, PA 19127. Visit him on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/jdsherocomplex/

Tim from Last Week Reviews: The Discipline #1!

Posted in Review with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 2, 2016 by Tim from Last Week

Writer: Peter MilliganTheDiscipline_01-1
Artist: Leandro Fernandez
Publisher: Image Comics
Released: 3/2/2015

Peter Milligan has been working in comics since the early 1980s, starting on 2000 AD, a popular British anthology comic. In the late ’80s, Milligan was among the last members of the early “British Invasion” in American comics, working heavily in DC Comics’ Vertigo line (Shade, The Changing Man; Animal Man; and Enigma). Some of his later work at DC included Batman, Hellblazer, and Justice League Dark. Milligan has also done work at Marvel Comics (X-Statix, X-Men, and Moon Knight).

Leandro Fernandez started working in American comics in the late 1990s, working at Marvel Comics (X-Factor, Incredible Hulk, Wolverine, Punisher), Oni Press (Queen & Country), as well as work for DC Comics’ Vertigo and Wildstorm imprints.

We are introduced to Melissa just as she realizes that the demon sex she’s enjoying is changing her into something else, and she isn’t sure she’s happy about it. But, wait, that’s the future. It turns out that, just a little while back, Melissa was a mildly unhappy wife, sister, and daughter. Her ill mother lives with Melissa’s sister, Krystal, but Krystal is not the best for dear, old Mom. We also find out that Melissa’s marriage isn’t great, she rarely sees her husband, and her main confidante is her dog, Hemingway.

Enter Orlando. Orlando is mysterious. Orlando is hot. Orlando is strange. Orlando is European. So, she decides to bed him and finally enjoy herself, for a change. But, Orlando plays hard-to-get (as far as Melissa can tell), which, of course, makes her want him more. One phone call later, she meets him in an unexpected place to seal the deal. Unfortunately, Orlando has brought all kinds of other-worldly baggage with him, and soon Melissa is naked and targeted by some of that baggage! Orlando defends her, but is he really helping her? Or does he have deeper plans for Melissa?

I have to admit: this is a strange book. There is nudity and sex, but it’s not graphic (though, graphically suggestive?). I am pretty sure there is a deeper story, but, so far: there are possibly 2 factions of demon-y type groups, possibly some reference to Ancient Rome or Greece, and demon sex. Milligan describes this as possibly “…the edgiest story…” he’s written. Which is saying something, considering some of his work for Vertigo. That being said, demon sex is generally considered edgy. However, I’m not getting edgy when I read this issue. I’m curious where the story is going, so, hopefully, we can get more edge as we go along.

I have not been a huge fan of Leandro Fernandez in the past, as he often succeeded another artist that I enjoyed with his completely different style. Even with that, I find this work to be interesting. I am still not sure that his art is “right” for this comic, but I did not find it to be jarring or painful, and I could follow his story-telling. Some of the panels are beautifully constructed, using negative space and what ends up being almost spot-coloring (colorist: Cris Peter). If you are not sure you know what spot-coloring is, think of black-and-white art with just a single “pop” of color thrown in (see the movie Sin City as a good example outside of comics). I am still not sure I like Fernandez’ art, or that he is right for this book, but I will have to see what follows to decide yea or nay.

I am not sure I am hooked yet, but, these days, most comic book stories (or story arcs) are 6 issues long, so it may take 2-3 issues to find that hook. While I am not excited about Fernandez’ art, I am pretty sure Milligan will provide a real story to follow. The Discipline is published monthly, and is priced $2.99 per issue.

The Discipline, and other great comics, can be found at Johnny Destructo’s Hero Complex located at 4456 Main Street in Manayunk, PA! Visit him on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/jdsherocomplex/

Tim from Last Week Reviews: Outcast vol. 1!

Posted in Review with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on February 3, 2016 by Tim from Last Week

Creator, Writer: Robert KirkmanOutcastVol1_Cover
Artist: Paul Azaceta
Publisher: Image Comics
Released: 1/28/2015 (Volume 2 released 10/7/2015)

Robert Kirkman holds a fairly significant place in comic book lore. As the creator of The Walking Dead, his legend will live on, forever. Robert is also unique in that he is an officer in Image Comics (Chief Operating Officer), and is the only member of that particular team that was not part of the founding of Image Comics, back in the 1990s. New boy does good. He has also written a ton of comics for Marvel Comics, but now does all of his work through Image (including his own imprint, Skybound Entertainment, a little corner of Image Comics for his creator-owned work to reside).

Paul Azaceta has worked on Spider-Man, Daredevil, Captain Marvel, and Captain America (Marvel Comics), Hellboy and Conan (Dark Horse Comics), plus a bunch of stuff with BOOM! Studios.

I had heard great things about this book, and it has been received well enough that it is currently in production as a new show for Cinemax. However, I was not super excited by this book. Some of my issue comes directly from the art. Well, not the art, exactly, but the panel layouts. Much of the action is told through big panels interlaced with small panels. Unfortunately, there were several times where my eye did not follow the action, correctly, and a few times where the panel layout simply threw me out of the story (I needed to stop and think about the panel layout, as opposed to thinking about the actual story). I also had difficulty following some of the movements of the “demons,” so I am unsure if I even have all of the story, at this point.

I feel so distracted by my concerns about the visual storytelling, that I am less intrigued by Kyle’s story, which I think I really do want to know. This is the first full story of Kirkman’s that I have read, so I do want to give him a chance to hook me. While I am curious about the demons, Kyle’s past, and how they connect, I am more interested in the “little things” – a hint of a relationship for one character (which, if it happens, will, of course, somehow end badly) – Kyle’s sister’s own marriage. Mostly small, character things that could impact the bigger story, but that just seem interesting on a character development level.

Even with all of these concerns, I intend to read volume 2. I suspect I will not find all of the answers within just these 2 parts, but if some of my needs are fed, I might find this to be a really deep ride. Outcast is published monthly (#14 was released on 12/23/2015), and is priced $2.99 per issue. Volume 1 of the trade paperback collections (“A Darkness Surrounds Him”, #1-6 of the monthly issues) is priced $9.99, and volume 2 (“A Vast and Unending Ruin”, #7-12 of the monthly issues) is priced at $14.99.

Outcast, and other great comics, can be found at Johnny Destructo’s Hero Complex located at 4456 Main Street in Manayunk, PA! Visit him on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/jdsherocomplex/

Tim from Last Week Reviews: Black Magic #1!

Posted in Review with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on January 6, 2016 by Tim from Last Week

Story: Greg RuckaBlackMagick_01-1
Art: Nicola Scott
Publisher: Image Comics
Released: 10/28/2015

Greg Rucka has been praised for his crime drama work (specifically, DC Comics’ Gotham Central, co-written with Ed Brubaker), and has plenty of experience writing strong female characters (Oni Press’ Queen & Country and DC’s Wonder Woman, as well as Gotham Central).

Nicola Scott has received much praise for her art, starting with Dark Horse Comics’ Star Wars: Empire, then on to DC Comics (Birds of Prey and Secret Six), and more recently she was the regular artist on DC’s Earth 2 (a title focusing on the Justice Society of America).

Black Magic follows Rowan Black, a Portsmouth Police Department Detective. The first scene reveals that Black is also a practicing witch. During a ritual, she is called to a hostage scene, where the captor has asked for her, specifically. Very quickly, it is revealed that he knows her secret, and that there are others who know it; others who want her dead because of who she is. Initially using her negotiation skills to save the hostages, she has to fall back on her Magic to save herself. There is also a text piece included at the end of the story, which gives some History from several hundred years before, and hints at a group that may have connections to witches, but who are not interested in involving themselves in the mass hysteria of the masses’ witch hunts.

I found the story to be a very comfortable read. It was not too heavy, or too thick, to read. Although police procedure (not among my favorite genres) is included, it is not the most important piece, and I enjoy the little bits of characterization we receive on Detective Black as well as that of a few of the witches and police officers. However, we still do not know much about any of the characters, so there is definitely something to look forward to in future issues. So far, the Magic is not a “main character,” so I have no idea how well that will be handled, story-wise. Hopefully, for me, Black will need to utilize both her Magic and police skills, together, to progress through the story.

I have been watching Nicola Scott’s art improve over the past few years, and I love seeing artists grow. Her painted style used for Black Magic is really beautiful. It is at once both realistic and pretty (it makes me think of the way I responded to John Bolton’s work in Black Dragon published by Marvel Comics’ Epic imprint back in the early 1980s), and seems perfectly suited to a combination of the gritty world of crime drama along with the beautiful, natural world of Magic. I absolutely cannot wait to see more of Nicola’s interpretation of the Magical world. My only issue with the art is that I would like more color. First, this book is not strictly black and white, so there is color, but it is a very flat color experience. However, the only colors seen, so far, are a bit during the ritual at the beginning (which could have used even more color, to add to the flavor of the scene) and a very small bit at the end (when Black uses her power to save herself). But, again, without seeing the entire series, there may be a story reason for this particular level of color usage that we do not know, yet.

Although I am not super excited about this series, yet, I think I want to know what comes next, so I plan to read the rest of the story. Black Magic is being published monthly. Issue #2 was released on November 25th and issue #3 was released on December 30th. Issue #4 will hit stores in January, and #5 in February. I will be looking for the collected edition of Black Magic, which will be released in the spring of this year.

Black Magic, and other great comics, can be found at Johnny Destructo’s Hero Complex located at 4456 Main Street in Manayunk, PA! Visit him on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/jdsherocomplex/

Tim from Last Week Reviews: Mystery Girl #1!

Posted in Review with tags , , , , , , on December 2, 2015 by Tim from Last Week

Script: Paul Tobinmystery-girl-1-2

Art: Alberto J. Alburquerque

Colors: Marissa Louise

Published monthly by Dark Horse Comics

Release Date 12/2/2015

The cover of this book sang to me. Specifically, the woman on the cover of this book sang to me. A sassy woman casually blows a bubble, while 12 hands hold guns/blades/bomb in her direction. Seemingly, this barrage of death doesn’t worry her in the least. Her business card is “paper-clipped” to the cover:

Trine Hampstead
Street Detective
All Mysteries Solved
(Already)

Trine Hampstead lives in London. Trine knows things. Possibly, Trine knows all things. Except for how she knows things. As the comic opens, Trine is opening her space for fortune-telling (she’s a “sidewalk detective”), and we are introduced to her neighbors, and her gift, as she solves her neighbors’ mysteries. She helps with any problems, big or small; a dog’s missing ball, a Metropolitan Police Officer’s questions about a criminal. We are also introduced to a hit man, hired to find missing scientific journals, who kills for fun. As it turns out, what the hit man finds is at the center of the mystery, and Trine knows what the journals hold. The mystery points to Siberia! But, the hit man decides that Trine should die…

Paul Tobin is mostly known for his Marvel Adventures comics (several comic book titles published by Marvel Comics for a younger audience), but has also written stories for DC Comics (Batman, Superman), Dark Horse Comics (Plants vs. Zombies, Bandette), Dynamite Entertainment (Bionic Woman), and Top Shelf Comics (Gingerbread Girl). Along with Spider-Girl (v.2) and Models, Inc., both for Marvel, Paul has written a number of comics starring female leads (there are more that didn’t make this list!). In Mystery Girl, I find Trine to be a very real person. Sure, she has strange powers that can’t be explained (yet), but she acts real, and I want to see how she manages the secrets she knows, the secret she doesn’t know, and a hit man bent on killing her. I credit that to Mr. Tobin.

Alberto Alburquerque is an unknown quantity, for me. This was my first exposure to his work, and I wasn’t able to find substantial material on him on the internet (in English, anyway, so maybe I did find more than I thought…). However, I find his art to be an interesting mix. Much of the art is a little too “cartoony”, for my taste, but I see real expressions and emotions in his characters’ faces, and all of the characters are unique in their looks. Also, on some pages, I see hints of Michael Golden, one of my favorite comic artists (mostly known for his cover work for Marvel Comics, but also for interior art in Micronauts and The ‘Nam).

Mystery Girl #1 will be on shelves on December 2, and will be published monthly.

Mystery Girl, and other great comics, can be found at Johnny Destructo’s Hero Complex located at 4456 Main Street in Manayunk, PA! Visit him on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/jdsherocomplex/

The Walking Dead

Posted in Review with tags , , , , , , , , , on June 9, 2015 by Lilliandra Winters

The Walking Dead
TV Series
**Spoilers **

Being a fan of zombies and comics, I automatically felt drawn to this show. Of course, the production quality also had a lot to do with it. When your zombies look like full-on zombies, it makes the illusion of the television show more real and that much easier to get lost in.

If you have read the comic and watched the show, you already know that the two don’t go hand in hand; however, this doesn’t offend me. I’ve always had the ability to separate book from movie and appreciate each for the works of art that they are (Unless we are talking about Anne Rice, but you don’t want to have that conversation with me).

By the by, interesting fact: they are called walkers because, in the universe of The Walking Dead, the notion of zombies never existed like it does in our universe.

I just finished binge watching the latest season and, I have to admit, this season was better at keeping my interest than most. Of course, there were a few times that my mind would wander and I’d just be listening to what was going on, but I paid more attention than usual.

I do appreciate how much they are trying to parallel the dangers of zombies and humans. Both are equally dangerous and deadly, just for different reasons. The apocalypse will always present you with the people who break, who become the psychopath their middle school guidance counselor always thought they would be. And yes, I believe they are equally dangerous. The only difference is that you know the motive of the zombie, but humans are bitches. I‘d rather be stuck with the zombies.

As for this season, I am woefully disappointed in Rick leading them into yet another community. I feel we need to make this a rule: Thou shalt never join a community during or after the apocalypse… Maybe we need to do a few new lists… (Xander, get on that).

As I was saying, I’d never join a community. Xander agrees, even if she is a filthy zombie hater, that you can build a community, but you can’t join one. It’s a stupid death wish. If you are already traveling with a group, then don’t be even further slackers and join a premade community. Make one your damn self. I’m not saying it won’t be hard, but it will save you a lot of trouble in the end. You know, no one to answer to, no rules to learn… no crazies eating human flesh. Also, if you’ve simply got to kill every motherfucker that tries to join you, accept no substitutions and only go with the people who already agree with your crazy ass.

You see what I did there?

I’m really pissed about the deaths this season, too. Seriously, what do zombies have against black guys on this show? Of course, the stupid preacher is still alive. I mean, I don’t wish him dead as hard as I wished Joffery dead on Game of Thrones, but oh, it is getting close. He is one of those idiots who should have died a long time ago, but is only alive due to sheer dumb luck. When did ‘Survival of the Fittest’ become ‘Survival of the Lucky Motherfuckers?’ There are several who earn the right to live, and I agree that they all have some manner of luck, but there are those who I just don’t get. Mainly the preacher. As useless as Eugene may have been in a fight, he has his usefulness, and I get it.

I don’t know. This season seemed to be about psychopaths, trying to fit a round peg into a square hole (putting them into a pre-existing community), PTSD (the preacher, Sasha, and Rick (to a lesser degree. but he has been bat-shit crazy for awhile now. They just seem to keep forgetting this tidbit)), and abuse. That last one was an interesting turn of events, and an interesting notion. How much are you willing to let ‘useful’ humans get away with for the sake of the greater good? Can a surgeon drink and beat his wife so you can have a surgeon? Nope, rubber band and razor blade that shit (that means cut off his balls) and that seems the gist.

Overall, I enjoy the Walking Dead, it is by far not my favorite case of zombies. I’ve been a zombie lover for a long time. I could delve into each zombie flick and why I love or hate them, but then I’d run out of other shit to talk about in blog posts.

The one thing that people seem to forget is that zombie stories speak to us more about human nature than they do about the supernatural or even of zombies. Killing zombies is one thing, but trying to outsmart them, build around them, keep them out is something entirely different. How we respond to what they do to us is the real story. Do we fight? Do we break? Do we turn on each other? Does it bring out our natural talents, drive us to kill, eat each other, rape, murder, steal? Zombies, much like becoming rich, magnifies who we are as a person. Are we strong enough? Do we care enough? Do we have the skills or the determination? I feel that how we respond to shit like that is who we truly are in the end. When it comes down to it, when it really comes down to it, can we be extraordinary? Or are we just sheep? Leaders or feeders.

So, think about it. Would you be the crazed hero trying to save everyone, but at the expense of your own sanity? Would you be the psycho, killing everyone that moves, just to survive or for some sick pleasure? Would you have even made it that far… or would you be one of The Walking Dead?

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