Walking Dead #93 begins a new story arc titled “A Larger World”. I find it odd that #93 is the jumping off point as issue #92 felt like part of the new design. Even more intriguing to me are the nagging doubts that continue to haunt me about the whole series. I was really excited with issue #92 and how it began to open up some new possibilities with Walking Dead. Issue #93 fails to build on that excitement. Instead it falls backs into well-worn territory, acting almost like a checklist of what’s been used by the series thus far. I don’t want Walking Dead to outstay its welcome. If the series ends I want that end to be spectacular, a bang not a whimper.
In issue #93, Jesus, aka Paul Monroe, a scout or middleman for what he claims are hundreds of survivors, continues to try and sell Rick and his crew on joining the fray. Rick doesn’t trust Jesus, tricks him and then ties Jesus up. Rambling with paranoia, Rick sends his crew out to get ready for an attack he has no reason to expect. There’s a whisper of dissent amongst the ranks as Rick, Michonne and Abraham hit the streets to see if they can smoke out these “attackers”. When they can’t, Rick makes a rather violent proclamation out of left field. The end.
So, let’s go over what we have. New character that seems too good to be true. Check. A promise of a life better than Rick Grimes and his party has now? Check. Rick’s inevitable and unstable reaction to this person? Check. Lot’s of talking about what the future could bring? Check. Last minute zombie action? Check and finally another unstable and this time semi-crazed next move? Check. All the things that have fueled the last forty issues of Walking Dead in someway are back. As much as I want to just push ahead with love, the repetitive nature of Walking Dead #93 gives me pause.
Robert Kirkman’s “A Larger World” set up could mean just that, an expansion of the world we’re involved with now. Perhaps by issue #100 we’ll meet a new sect of survivors and the stories will switch off between Rick and his crew and this new cast of characters. While I wouldn’t support the death of Rick Grimes, maybe his violent tendencies force the others to cast him out and Rick vanishes for ten or twenty issues. There’s so much that a “larger world” could put into play, I just hope Kirkman has the bravery to do it. If this is another big battle where people die or a sinister threat that Rick and the gang overcome in the midst of zombies, I think the whole series is in jeopardy.
When the backbone of a series is one event it can be hard to keep it going. I’m fairly certain Walking Dead has progressed beyond the original scope of the story and I applaud Kirkman for that. However, now it’s time to move on, either really shake the series up or end it before it becomes boring. Either way, something needs to go down and I hope it does by issue #100. If not, the Walking Dead series may be as predictable and slow moving as the zombies that inhabit it.
And yes, I still hate the art.
CRAVE ONLINE RATING: 5/10 (3, Story 2 Art)