By Jorge Solis
In “The Walking Dead” #110, what would happen if Rick’s secret plans fell into the wrong hands? In a race against time, Rick has to keep the important information from reaching Negan and his Saviors. Will Rick be able to stop Negan’s messenger in time? Or, will he fail to save his community from death?
There is a traitor hiding amongst Rick’s small group of survivors. After shaking hands with King Ezekiel, Rick has been planning a surprise attack at Negan’s camp. Negan actually doesn’t know his two most hated enemies have joined forces against him. What would Negan do if he suddenly had that kind of information? Would King Ezekiel reconsider his alliance with Rick if Negan found out about them?
In the opening pages, writer Robert Kirkman is building the suspense towards the epic battle between Negan and Rick. After each twist and turn, Kirkman keeps promising that this battle will be worthwhile. But in the meantime, Kirkman teases his readers with his brand of witty humor.
Michonne raises her eyebrows when she first sees two pretend-knights riding on horses. Rick then tells her that’s just the start of the weirdness. Andrea says out loud what’s on everybody’s mind, including the reader’s, “Is that a tiger?”
Kirkman adds more to Ezekiel’s back-story and fleshes out his personality. Because Ezekiel used to perform at the community theater, he evokes a sort of theatrical presence around others. Because he is playing the role of a king, Ezekiel understands about acting and hiding behind a performance. He points out to Michonne that she isn’t even a real samurai; she is just playing the role. Michonne is barely able to control her anger because Ezekiel reminds her so much about The Governor.
Artist Charlie Adlard escalates the tension when Michonne confronts Ezekiel and his pet tiger. Michonne stands tall as she points the tip of her sword at him. Ezekiel doesn’t even flinch and you have this heightened Mexican standoff between the three, who are just itching to make the first move.
Because Ezekiel is a showman, Adlard captures the spirit of the performer in his illustrations. Notice how Ezekiel always extends his arms wide when he is talking to someone. It looks like he is trying to give a grandiose gesture. In close-ups, Ezekiel has a sly smile on his face when he laughs at his own jokes.
If you miss your daily dose of zombies on Sundays, then “The Walking Dead” #110 is the relief you need. The series continues to do very well because of its spot-on characterizations and terrific artwork. Nothing is ever simple in the zombie apocalypse, especially when it’s the humans you have to worry about.
“The Walking Dead” #110 is out now.