Saturday, June 18, 2011

Zombie Review: The Walking Dead, Vol. 8 Made to Suffer

The Walking Dead, Vol. 8: Made to Suffer by Robert Kirkman

ZPAA rating

Adults with high capacity only (use your judgment based on content summary below)

Gore level

10 out of 10--Usual human on zombie and human on human violence, with lots of decapitated heads featured in this volume. What pushes it to 10 is our friend, the governor, and his totally sick treatment of his zombie daughter. He yanks out her teeth so he can kiss her on the mouth without getting bitten. And other stuff too. More content that I wish I could expunge from my mind. I guess it was included to remind readers how sick and evil the governor is, though it really seems hard to forget his previous horrors.

Other offensive content

The usual persistent bad language; one explicit sex scene (non-marital); utterly gloomy ending.

How much zombie mythology/content

There's no development of any explanations about the zombies at all. This story is completely focused on the prison folk versus the Governor's people.

How much fun

The writing is still quite good even if things just get grimmer and grimmer. I can't really say I enjoyed it though it was compelling and a fast read.

Synopsis & Review

After making many preparations for the coming of the Governor's townfolk, the prison is attacked with the governor sitting on top of a tank flanked by five other cars full of armed townsmen. The battle doesn't go as planned for either side and improvisation ensues. The townsfolk withdraw to regroup for another attack. Some people in the prison want to go after them right away, some want to flee the prison, some want to hunker down for next time. All three plans are used by various inmates making for a very intriguing drama.

The back story of how the Governor survived and how he's deceived his people into following him is revealed, along with more awful sordid details of how he treats his zombie daughter. This part was really shocking and terrible, like the extended torture scene from Volume 6. Unlike the torture scene, this scene isn't necessary to the story, other than to remind people how sick and twisted the Governor really is. The excuse for inserting it is pretty slim. I'm really tempted to stop reading this. As compelling as the story is, I can't take much more.

The ending is especially depressing considering how many characters die. The title "Made to Suffer" is made to order for this book. Uggh. I want to go and watch some Marx Brothers to clear my mind of this empty, sad feeling.

Sample Text

On the current level of bleakness: Rick's son Carl: Why is everyone so sad? Rick: Carl, BLANK died today. Carl: The bad men kill him? Rick: Yes. Carl, are you upset? Carl: No. People die, Dad. It happens all the time. I'll miss BLANK...but I knew he was going to die eventually. Everyone will. Everyone. What did you want, Dad?

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