Walking Dead Forever

Without permission from undeadwalking.com.

This time last year, I opened up issue 192 of The Walking Dead and did my usual first-pass read — the kind of breath-held-whaat’s-happeniiing-neeeext first-pass read — and partway through I sat back, stunned. I remember turning to the Lovely Wife and telling her what I’d just read. (Not a comic reader herself, she made a sympathetic noise and returned to her house renovations.)

The end of TWD came a month later with issue 193 and, miracles of miracles — though to be honest, there really are no miracles in the creation of art — it ended the series perfectly. And just like with every issue preceding it, I leant back after the more careful second-pass read and marvelled at the craft and love of TWD creator and writer Robert Kirkman, aided and abetted by artists Tony Moore and Charlie Adlard.

Without permission from comic-watch.com

TWD was a series that published regularly, each issue never failed to leave me figuratively gasping How the fuck are they going to resolve that?, mind reeling from cliffhangers and resolutions that were equally unexpected and inevitable, and counting the days until the next issue.

I’m sad that it’s finished but glad that it ended the way and when it did. I don’t know when I’ll be able to revisit the series at my leisure but it won’t be far away, in the Essential Section of the library.


Comfort Reading

Without permission from cbr.com (https://www.cbr.com/committed-marshal-law-the-most-underrated-book-in-comics/).

My productivity has plummeted as I compulsively refresh news sites and follow social media. It’s the world out there, is what it is. What a start to 2020, huh?

It hasn’t all been sitting and staring at the Johns Hopkins tracking page, though.

Without permission from cbr.com (https://www.cbr.com/neil-gaiman-sandman-trivia/).

I’ve pulled some old favourites down from the shelves. They may not be the most appropriate for these times but if it gives me solace to spend time in a world where I know how things will end, I’ll take it.

Without permission from cbr.com (https://www.cbr.com/the-walking-dead-ways-comics-finale-is-perfect-fell-short/).

Stay safe. Take care of each other. Be kind.


2016 in Points

Temptation beckons from the Piggery Books store in Whangarei.

I’ve been putting off this post because… it’s been another pathetic year on the page-turning front: 29 titles. This makes 2015 look so much better (but it’s still not good enough as a Writer).

Stand-out reads:

  • My Name Was Judas by C K Stead
  • The Private Eye by Brian K Vaughan, Marcos Martin and Mutsa Vicente
  • The Walking Dead 150–161 by Robert Kirkman and various artists
  • Mississipi Grind (3 March 2014 draft) by Anna Boden & Ryan Fleck
  • Lost Dogs by Jeff Lemire

I know.

I know.

Must. Make. Time.


2012 in Print

Yah, it’s the end of 2012 already so time for a quick blow-out.

Another average year in terms of quantity of reading. Texts, as you can see immediately below, were a bit on the thin side.


Other People’s Wars – Nicky Hager
Road Dogs – Elmore Leonard


Ongoing titles Walking Dead, Powers and Scalped continue to rate with excellent storytelling. Castle Waiting, Dolltopia and RASL were very pleasant surprises.

RIP – Thomas Ott
Castle Waiting Volumes 1 and 2 – Linda Medley
Tamara Drewe – Posy Simmonds
Walking Dead Volume 15 – We Find Ourselves – Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard
The Killer Volumes 1 and 3 – Matz and Luc Jacamon
Dolltopia – Abbi Densen
Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense: Being Human – Mike Mignola
Scalped Volume 7 – Rez Blues – Jason Aaron and R M Guera
RASL Volumes 1-3 – Jeff Smith
Powers Volume 14 – Gods – Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming


This year’s overall slant towards television writing is represented below with the number of pilots listed.

3:10 to Yuma – Michael Brandt & Derek Haas
Analyze This – Peter Tolan and Harold Ramis and Kenneth Lonergan
Gilmore Girls – Pilot – Amy Sherman-Palladino
Arrested Development – Pilot – Mitchell Hurwitz
My Name is Gary Cooper – Victor Rodger
30 Rock – Pilot and S01E07 – Tina Fey
Groundhog Day – Danny Rubin & Harold Ramis
The West Wing S02E04 – Aaron Sorkin
Justified S01E08 – Benjamin Cavell
Django Unchained – Quentin Tarantino

I’m a little worried I might’ve spoiled things a bit by reading Django Unchained before its opening here in New Zild but I enjoyed the script heaps more than the script for Inglorious Basterds (the film of which I have yet to see in its entirety [and those bits I have chanced across have been intriguingly tasty]).



Okay, (I suppose) I’m excited about the upcoming third season of The Walking Dead when one of the publicity stills caught my eye:

Compare that to our introduction to her in the comic:

Am I being nitpicky in thinking, What’s with the Masai She-Warrior shit?


Oh Alright Maybe

A flurry of Facebook comments from Stevo and Motorbike Steve about the return of The Walking Dead behooves me to confess that The Goddess and I started watching the second season a while back and got two eps -, no wait, three -, hang on.

… Whoa. Okay. Disappointment in the second season was so deep that it wasn’t even entered into my viewing diary.

I’m as shocked as you are, believe me.

But back to the story. We got however many eps into the season and She turned to me and said what I’d been thinking for all the eps subsequent to the season opener: This is boring. So we stopped.

Michonne and travelling companions (“The Walking Dead” #19).

But Season 3 beckons with the promise of Michonne and the penitentiary arc and… godsdammit, that arc was just mindblowingly awful (but in a good way) that I just have to relive it, and it’s been too, too long since we’ve had a bad-ass no-nonsense African American heroine like Strange Days‘ Mace.

Angela Bassett as Mace in “Strange Days” (1995).

Yeh okay, I’m in.


2011 in Print


A nice mix of mainstream, European and indy this year.

  Asterios Polyp – David Mazzuchelli
  Britten & Brulightly – Hannah Berry
  Chance in Hell – Gilbert Hernandez
  Doing Time – Hanawa Kazuichi
  Fun Home – Alison Bechdel
  Hellcity: The Whole Damned Thing – Macon Blair and Joe Flood
  The Lagoon – Lilli Carre
  Maybe Later – Dupuy & Berberian
  Powers: Z – Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming
  Shaolin Burning – Ant Sang
  The Third Musketeer – Jason
  Walking Dead: No Way Out – Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard


Hm. According to my reading diary, I read the average annual amount of these this year but very few have wowed me like I want to be wowed.

  Billy Elliott – Lee Hall
  The Good Wife: Pilot – Robert King and Michelle King
  Lone Star – John Sayles
  Manhunter – Michael Mann
  The Straight Story – John Roach and Mary Sweeney

Maybe it’s just me.


Some ah, research led me to more non-fiction reading that I would previously readily admit.

  Armageddon – Max Hastings
  Nemesis – Max Hastings
  Striptease – Carl Hiaasen
  True Grit – Charles Portis

I’m tempted to try the Demi Moore vehicle that started out once upon a time as a film adaptation of Striptease but… ‘m afraid I mayn’t survive it.