The “All Out War” breaks out this issue, with Hilltop siding with Negan and his forces. That leaves Alexandria (Rick’s forces) and The Kingdom alone to face Negan. When Gregory reveals his intentions, Rick watches as his forces dwindle, but not enough to satisfy Negan.
That’s okay, though. Rick has a plan. And a mole inside of Negan’s camp. Unfortunately, he has to deal with a betrayal, as well. (Kind of.)
‘The Walking Dead’ is so episodic, it’s almost hard to really rank any individual issue because so much hinges on what’s come before and what is upcoming. Even so, the series has been dragging a bit, so it’s nice to see the action level increased and to see Rick being proactive and having a plan. I’ve said before that the cast has gotten a little bloated and needs to be trimmed down. That rings true again, as the person on the cover, Holly (she used to sleep with Abraham) suddenly takes a major role. It’s hard to care when her only real role in the story is that… well, she used to sleep with Abraham.
But at least we get some gunfire AND more importantly, some “Roamer” action. (If you only watch the show, that’s what the characters in the comic book call the “walkers.” It was kind of a nice throw-back, since I’ve gotten so used to the show and its affectations.) The zombies have been used sparingly in recent issues, so it was nice to see them utilized here. Hopefully there will be more upcoming.
Charlie Adlard normally does all of the art himself, but with this storyline, a separate inker has been added to the mix, Stefano Gaudiano. The change is extremely subtle… one might not even notice the difference, but there are a few times when the gay-scale does pop.
This issue ramps things up a bit. It definitely feels like the book is drifting back to its old self, the book we all fell in love with. It’s not quite there yet, but it’s getting there.
THE WALKING DEAD #116
Written by Robert Kirkman
Pencils and Cover by Charlie Adlard