The walking dead #157


Walking Dead #157 by Image Comics copyright 2015. I have graded the comic book, using the Overstreet Grading Guide, at VERY FINE with the following defects: Light stress marks along the spine. The corners are rounded. There is some yellowing of the pages.

This issue kicks off what promises to be the most significant Walking Dead storyline since "All Out War" several years ago. And while "The Whisperer War" involves another major clash between opposing factions, this opening chapter makes it clear that readers shouldn't expect Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard to rehash what's come before. If there's anything clear about "The Whisperer War," it's that nothing is clear.

Case in point, while I took last issue's surprise twist to mean that Negan was planning to replace Alpha as head of the Whisperers, this issue suggests that Negan may still be on Rick's side. He's certainly making a loud show of it, anyway. This latest wrinkle accomplishes several goals at once. It sparks open war between the Whisperers and the survivors at Alexandria. It obscures the role Negan is ultimately meant to play in this conflict. And it downplays the notion of this being a battle between good and evil. If anything, it paints Rick and his allies as the aggressors.

What results is a densely packed and unsettling issue. War hasn't arrived, but everyone knows it's right around the corner. The tension only grows over the course of the story as various characters steel themselves for battle and Rick and his friends wrestle wth the question of how far they can trust Negan. Kirkman's characterization of Negan stands out here. We're given no overt sign that this bloodthirsty killer is plotting against our heroes. No panels featuring Negan grinning in the shadows or anything like that. But the fact that his dialogue is utterly free of his usual stream of profanity suggests that Negan is definitely putting on a performance.

Adlard makes a very interesting and purposeful shift in this chapter, opting for compressed, 16-panel grid layouts. The explanation given on the letters page is that "The Whisperer War" is a very dense story and needs a more dense approach to presentation. That approach pays off, especially in terms of punching up the more dialogue-heavy sequences. And it doesn't prevent Adlard from delivering the high-impact splash pages he's so well known for. If anything, the transition from small panels to large splash images only gives the latter a stronger impact.

Any fears that "The Whisperer War" will simply rehash the conflict of "All Out War" should be put to rest in this first chapter. Between the always unpredictable Negan and the fact that there's no longer a clear good or evil faction in this conflict, the series aims to keep readers guessing. And with the revamped storytelling approach, this war promises to be very in-depth and eventful.

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Issue #161 of THE WALKING DEAD brings us to part 5 of “The Whisperer War.” Part 4 ended on an exciting note when we found The Hilltop under attack by a faction of The Whisperer’s dead army. Flaming arrows were launched to lead the assault on The Hilltop, and the continuing strike in this issue is very reminiscent of when Alexandria was rushed during the “All Out War” story arc a few years ago. In very typical Robert Kirkman fashion, the reader is unsure how safe to feel: which side of this war is winning thus far? THE WALKING DEAD #161 delivers fast-paced excitement in a near-concluded story arc while planting the seeds for future storylines to come.

Charlie Adlard’s art is as good as ever. There are a few panels that appear a bit rushed, but then there are some that are completely spectacular. With as much chaos as there is happening, every panel is clear and intriguing. Stefano Guadiano’s inking is a big reason for some of the splendid closeups, and I think it’s important to commend these two artists for making the maiming of zombies continuously interesting and appealing after 160 issues of mayhem.

There are two panels in particular that really made me look at the page for a solid minute. When The Hilltop is supposedly secure, Maggie is standing triumphant with an apathetic look on her face. Her surroundings are literally on fire, and with a sword cast to one side and her frightened child on the other, we see another human who has lost so much in such little time. Even following a valiant victory, she is numb to the world around her that took both her father and husband, as well as nearly taking her only child.

Then we have Beta, who is such a mess. In fact, he is such a mess that he can barley remember the entire battle plan The Whisperers have put into place. While Beta is most likely a bit off from loss of blood, his mental state is certainly in disarray from the way the battle has been swaying. His attitude as a whole has certainly changed since Alpha’s death. But these temporary crippling demeanors are a good thing for Negan and Beta: they add development to their personalities. Both of these individuals losing something that has made them rounder characters. They are proper villains, a piece that is integral to a comic book story.

One of the few criticisms that I have about this issue is one that I’ve always had with THE WALKING DEAD: are there really that many zombies? Particularly, did The Whisperers have that many stockpiled? This question came to me again as Beta questions the status of his army, an army that appears never to be depleted. Is it lazy writing to just keep throwing wave after wave of zombies at our ‘heroes?’ That’s probably a matter of opinion. But for a book that is meant to be a bit exaggerated in its gore and horror, this is one critique that I can certainly ignore.

Walking Dead #157 by Image Comics copyright 2015. I have graded the comic book, using the Overstreet Grading Guide, at VERY FINE with the following defects: Light stress marks along the spine. The corners are rounded. There is some yellowing of the pages.

Walking Dead #157 by Image Comics copyright 2015. I have graded the comic book, using the Overstreet Grading Guide, at VERY FINE with the following defects: Light stress marks along the spine. The corners are rounded. There is some yellowing of the pages.

This issue kicks off what promises to be the most significant Walking Dead storyline since "All Out War" several years ago. And while "The Whisperer War" involves another major clash between opposing factions, this opening chapter makes it clear that readers shouldn't expect Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard to rehash what's come before. If there's anything clear about "The Whisperer War," it's that nothing is clear.

Case in point, while I took last issue's surprise twist to mean that Negan was planning to replace Alpha as head of the Whisperers, this issue suggests that Negan may still be on Rick's side. He's certainly making a loud show of it, anyway. This latest wrinkle accomplishes several goals at once. It sparks open war between the Whisperers and the survivors at Alexandria. It obscures the role Negan is ultimately meant to play in this conflict. And it downplays the notion of this being a battle between good and evil. If anything, it paints Rick and his allies as the aggressors.

What results is a densely packed and unsettling issue. War hasn't arrived, but everyone knows it's right around the corner. The tension only grows over the course of the story as various characters steel themselves for battle and Rick and his friends wrestle wth the question of how far they can trust Negan. Kirkman's characterization of Negan stands out here. We're given no overt sign that this bloodthirsty killer is plotting against our heroes. No panels featuring Negan grinning in the shadows or anything like that. But the fact that his dialogue is utterly free of his usual stream of profanity suggests that Negan is definitely putting on a performance.

Adlard makes a very interesting and purposeful shift in this chapter, opting for compressed, 16-panel grid layouts. The explanation given on the letters page is that "The Whisperer War" is a very dense story and needs a more dense approach to presentation. That approach pays off, especially in terms of punching up the more dialogue-heavy sequences. And it doesn't prevent Adlard from delivering the high-impact splash pages he's so well known for. If anything, the transition from small panels to large splash images only gives the latter a stronger impact.

Any fears that "The Whisperer War" will simply rehash the conflict of "All Out War" should be put to rest in this first chapter. Between the always unpredictable Negan and the fact that there's no longer a clear good or evil faction in this conflict, the series aims to keep readers guessing. And with the revamped storytelling approach, this war promises to be very in-depth and eventful.

IGN uses cookies and other tracking technologies to customize online advertisements, and for other purposes. IGN supports the Digital Advertising Alliance principles.


The Walking Dead 157 Review – IGN

Issue 157 | Walking Dead Wiki | FANDOM powered by Wikia

    Walking Dead #157 by Image Comics copyright 2015. I have graded the comic book, using the Overstreet Grading Guide, at VERY FINE with the following defects: Light stress marks along the spine. The corners are rounded. There is some yellowing of the
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