Walking Dead #193,
VERY FINE/NEAR MINT
BONUS REVIEW by Kevin Healy
(W) Robert Kirkman
(A) Charlie Adlard & Various
(CA) Charlie Adlard, Dave Stewart
'THE FARMHOUSE': Out in the countryside, trouble is brewing for a certain someone.
Date Available: 07/03/2019
In issue #192 of The Walking Dead, Rick Grimes is killed by a spoiled, selfish, flat out useless member of the Commonwealth. This kid is the exact kind of person you'd say "That rich f*** is gonna get away with it!" over and you'd be right most of the time. On a Law & Order episode, he would. If you hate Sebastian Milton, you're not the only one.
Sebastian Milton is the one who broke Carl Grimes. We leave him at the end of #192 lost, collapsed, incapable of moving an inch let alone moving on. He can't do it without his dad. Can't.
In a world without surprises in entertainment, things rarely happen that can shock. Rick being killed was one. The Walking Dead ending with issue #193 is the last one Robert Kirkman will ever pull on you.
If you haven't heard, this IS the last issue. It was well known for years when Invincible would end. Here, not so much. I've been thinking about that, and this issue, quite a bit. I think I have a take that works. Carl is anyone who reads Walking Dead, and Rick Grimes is the title himself.
This is, by all accounts, a book people don't just like. They love it. It is the top of their reading pile, its the reason they call or text their friends who read it, waiting to lead with "Did you read..." or "Can you believe...", or "Holy S**T.". With the book finished, many of them may feel like Carl did in their own way. Lost. Upset. Unwilling or unable to let go and move on. It is important, therefore, to mention that Carl is in this issue. He has survived. He has moved on. Things are radically different. Again. Kirkman has done this before. Remember the 2 year jump after the end of 'All Out War'? That's nothing. Many people in this issue will be familiar even with their changes. Many will have taken on new roles. Some will disappoint. Not to put too fine a point on it, but Maggie is not the best single mother in the history of single mothers in a post apocalyptic zombie filled h*llscape. Not everyone can be, to be fair.
What this issue, what this title does so well month after month after month is take the little things in the bigger picture, put them in perspective for a world full of shambling corpses, and apply them in a relatable way for the readers. It's why were all still here, 193 issues later, and something that other comics never get right during their whole run.
There's probably a lot more to say about the issue, but that really would be spoiling things. For a title that practically invented 'Spoiler Alert' as a necessity, some breathing room, some time to walk around...we're going to allow it.
It IS going to be ok. We are all going to get through it. When you're ready, there's a rich fifteen year history ready to be revisited. The believable characters, the anything can happen scenarios, the genuine sense of loss, anger, even betrayal will all still be there, re-contextualized and rewarding. Put simply, one of the best titles ever, and maybe the most important modern comic series.
Sebastian is still rotting, btw.
I give it 10 out of 10 Grahams