“”ALL OUT WAR,” Part Nine. Whose side is Dwight REALLY on?”
Last time on The Walking Dead, Dwight got some alone time with Eugene, and revealed his true allegiance was to Rick. However, the guy in the glasses overheard the conversation, and confronted Dwight. It turned out that he also wanted Negan taken down, and he wasn’t alone. Back at The Hilltop, Maggie was having trouble accepting her new role of leadership, and a fast approaching food crisis wasn’t helping matters. Rick and Andrea shared a touching moment on the wall. Ezekiel told Michonne that he was ready to man up. Paul “Jesus” Monroe was revealed to be gay and to currently have a boyfriend. Negan came up with a new war strategy: coat Lucille and all of their weapons weapons in walker gunk for use in the coming battles. The remainder of the members of The Kingdom arrived at The Hilltop, which meant that all of the “good guys” were in one place. Rick held a war council and drew up new plans of action, but it seemed to be too late. The issue ended with Negan arriving outside the city walls, preparing to attack at sundown.
This time on The Walking Dead, the calm before the storm (aka Negan’s surprise attack), and then the storm hits. Hard.
For starters, I had said in a previous review that I thought that there must be good people at The Factory. It’s good to see that theory come true. There was previous evidence of that, specifically when Carl had his little visit a while back. I think that maybe there was a good thing going for them there when The Saviors first started out, but got worse over time, or even possibly really quickly. They were still mostly safe from walkers at The Factory, but they ended up ruled by a madman. A madman that they were too afraid to stand up to. Maybe that’s even the answer to Dwight’s hesitancy to stand up to Negan. But the regular people were definitely terrified of him, in my opinion, and they’re taking advantage of this chance to jump ship. I don’t know what will come of it, though. Full revolution at The Factory or just a small group fleeing into the night? I guess we’ll find out soon enough.
One of the scenes that sticks out the most in this issue is between Carl and Sophia. It doesn’t last long, but it reminded me that even though a lot of issues have gone by, not as much time in the series has actually passed. With adults, it can be tougher to notice how much time has passed. But, with kids, it’s more obvious when a large amount of time goes by. Carl and Sophia are definitely both still kids in the zombie apocalypse and it isn’t easy for them. Both of them have gone through hell in their short time on the earth. I think everyone who has survived until now probably has gone through some sort of trauma, but these are the two kids that we know. They’re both definitely psychologically scarred, but hopefully time will heal all. They need the fulfillment of Rick’s dream of a peaceful existence first, though.
The more heartwarming moments between Rick and Andrea we get, the more nervous I get. I seriously can’t shake this feeling that at least one of them is going to die. I really, really hope that I’m wrong, but Kirkman has a history of ripping our hearts out. It would be awesome if they could both just get a happy ending or at least not have an ending yet. That would be a twist. Worries aside, Rick’s eternal optimism is one of the non-depressing moments in this issue and probably one of the main forces in keeping everyone else going. His faith is contagious. It always has been. There’s a reason why Maggie said that she “believed in Rick Grimes” in that earlier issue. It sounded kind of cheesy, but that doesn’t make it untrue. He is a leader who inspires others to believe, stay strong, and keep fighting. I believe in Rick Grimes too. He will somehow get these people through the storm. I really believe that he will do that. I just hope that he survives to see the future that he believes so strongly in.
The Bottom Line
Just when I thought that things couldn’t look more bleak in the All Out War, The Walking Dead #123 came along. With three issues left in the war, I really can’t see how the “good guys” will win this one. I had hoped that the three groups would unite, The Saviors would rebel, and things would end without too much scorched earth. That was a dumb hope for me to have. It’s called All Out War for a reason. This issue offers further proof of that. There were some nice moments before the attack, but I think that those won’t pop up again until after the war has ended. The suspense continues to build up to colossal levels in The Walking Dead #123, and for the first time since I started reviewing The Walking Dead last summer, I literally can’t wait for the next issue to come out. Not only that, but I have a feeling that this will be a repeated sentiment until the end of the war.
The Rhodes Rating: 92/100
Buy Your Copy Here: The Walking Dead #123
The Walking Dead #124 releases on March 26th!
For all of my Walking Dead coverage: http://stephenwrhodes.com/tag/the-walking-dead/