Hello, reader friends! As I mentioned last week, I have recently delved into the comic book world of The Walking Dead by Robert Kirkman. I've been watching the TV show on AMC for quite some time, and I always knew there was a comic series, but not being much of a comics fan, I didn't see the need to seek them out.
Now, as Season 6 of the show has taken me on a wild roller coaster of flesh-eating-zombie emotion, I've found myself more and more curious about the comics that the series is based upon. It's hard not to hear fans comparing the show to the comic fairly constantly, and so I finally decided to make some time to check them out myself.
OH MAH GAH. I am HOOKED. Why didn't I start these up sooner???
I am reading the comics as "compendiums", which are basically huge collections of a lot of issues of the comic (makes it much easier than having to hunt down each individual issue). There are 3 TWD compendiums currently, and my local library system has the first two (I'm currently on the second).
Fans of the show (but not the comic) may be wondering: what makes the comics worth reading if I'm already quite happy with the TV series? That's a GOOD question. Here's the reasons I've come up with so far, as a former skeptic myself:
1. It's interesting to see the origins of TWD: the initial tone, the motivations of each character, etc. I've found that in some parts, the comic is WAY more campy than the show. In other areas, the intensity and violence is far beyond anything you've seen on TV. It's cool to read it one way after having watched it another, and dissect why there may have been differences created between the two.
2. Comparing the characters. This is obviously the MOST fun reason to read the comics. Some of the characters are pretty much exactly as you'd expect, with their story line largely unchanged thus far (Rick, Carl, Shane, Glenn come to mind). And then there are some that are just like, WHAT?? CAROL?? IS THAT EVEN YOU?? Ditto for Dale, Hershel, Andrea (happy to report that Comic Andrea is 1000x less annoying than TV Andrea), Tyreese, and a whole host of others. Plus, TV Governor is child's play compared to Comic Governor. ((shudders)) And this doesn't even get into the differences in who lives and who dies. (Or who keeps appendages, and who doesn't...)
Oh, and there's no Daryl in the comics. I KNOW.
3. With books, the common mantra is "the book is always better than the movie." In TWD, I don't think you can necessarily say that the comic is better than the show, or vice versa. The comic certainly has been able to do some things that the show can't, especially when it comes to toeing the line with violence. But the show does just as good a job of delving into each character's background, and hitting the primary high points of the comic's story line. Comparing and contrasting these two mediums based on what they can provide is fun brain food.
Basically, this entire post is a push to all you TWD TV fans to get out there and READ the darn comics, if you haven't already. If you think you'll be bored because you already know what happens...trust me, you are wrong!
Any other Walking Dead fans out there? Have you just watched the show, just read the comics, or both? What do you prefer? And either way--if you were stuck in the zombie apocalypse, which Walking Dead character would you want to be stuck with for survival? YOU CAN PICK TWO. (Because it was too hard for me to only pick one. I have to go with Carol and Daryl, but the rule is that they're not allowed to fraternize as long as I'm around.)