Science fiction and fantasy
The Walking Dead: Days Gone Bye
by Robert Kirkman and Tony Moore
Socially, the world of The Walking Dead has shrunk, so that people are left dealing with far smaller groups of people. This magnifies all of the tensions and petty jealousies, but it also strengthens some of the bonds between people. There is no-one else, so they can neither escape each other nor live without each other. So on one level it's less about surviving a zombie attack, and more about people getting on together when life has suddenly become very precarious.
The plot is fairly fast-moving, but I didn't find it all that fresh. This is a standard zombie apocalypse scenario that puts no emphasis on why or how the outbreak took place, and offers no new spin on the theme. So it's up to the characters to create the interest. They're quite believable, but I didn't find them especially funny, quirky, or endearing. Shane, the butch cop who was Rick's colleague before the outbreak, is particularly transparent. But basically Rick is an everyman surrounded by a lot of everymen and everywomen.
Tony Moore's black and white artwork is clear and competent. I'm not sure whether I would have preferred colour in a story with quite so many rotting corpses in it. It's certainly a gruesome graphic novel.
When it comes to plot, characters, and dialogue, I found Days Gone Bye to be serviceable but not special. There are no glaring flaws, but it's not a unique take on the zombie genre. However, the ending does leave scope for more interesting character development in later episodes.
31st July 2013
If you like this, try:Fiend by Peter Stenson
The zombie apocalypse had arrived, but all Chase cares about is where the next hit is coming from.
The Return Man by V. M. Zito
Half of America has been overrun by zombies. So why has one man ignored the evacuation order and stayed to put them down?
Zombie Apocalypse by Stephen Jones
A zombie plague threatens to spell the end for humanity. Can anyone stop the shambling advance of the undead?
Review © Ros Jackson