With season two of AMC’s The Walking Dead under way, shattering records, the zombie craze is more alive than ever. The Walking Dead has always been that special something in the hearts of horror comic fans, and the series continues to find more advocates as it branches off into new mediums. Season one of TWD was proof that it can be successfully adapted to television, but can Kirkman do it again? Will TWD make for an exciting and psychologically horrifying novel as well? I strongly believe that TWD, despite how mainstream it becomes, will always stay true to its fans and always do its best to give a good name to the zombie movement. Rise of the Governor doesn’t simply retell events from the comics, it provides a first person origin story for the fan favorite villain known as ‘The Governor’. Just in time for the Halloween season, this is one book no TWD fan should pass up. Read on for the skinny…
“Following in the footsteps of the New York Times bestselling graphic novels and the record-breaking new television show, this debut novel in a trilogy of original Walking Dead books chronicles the back story of the comic book series’ greatest villain, The Governor. The despot who runs the walled-off town of Woodbury, he has his own sick sense of justice: whether it’s forcing prisoners to battle zombies in an arena for the townspeople’s amusement, or chopping off the appendages of those who cross him. Now, for the first time, fans of The Walking Dead will discover how The Governor became the man he is, and what drove him to such extremes.”
The Walking Dead has continuously been one of (if not the) best horror comics on the stands for nearly a decade. Before zombies were even cool, (hipster) Robert Kirkman was bringing us into a brain splattering world that offered as much bloodshed as it did intellectual analysis on the effects of a grand scale apocalypse. What many people forget about the series, especially those ignorant enough to comment on the show without having read the comic, is that it’s primarily a psychological portrayal of a man in desperation trying to keep his family alive, not a zombie story. Nothing pisses me off more than people saying, “there aren’t enough zombies in the show”, “why aren’t there more kills”, or the worst of the bunch, “Walking Dead is just trying to jump on the zombie bandwagon” (yes I’ve heard that). If you are one of those pea-brained people, your obliviousness to the comics and your utter inability to comprehend thematic elements in a narrative are disgraceful. If all you want is gore galore because your cerebral capacity is that of an underdeveloped rodent I suspect you are in fact the one who jumped into the bandwagon and now you should jump out. I hope that if there ever is ‘World War Z’ that you try to see as many zombies as you can so that you end up crawling on the pavment with your innards trailing behind you screaming in delusion for Rick Grimes and his axe. Rant over.
The Governor’s first appearance in the comics depicts him as a man with an extremely questionable set of moral beliefs who would do just about anything to make sure his town was “safe”. He wasn’t always a bad man; something drove him to be that way. Obviously Kirkman had some sort of history in mind for this psychopath. Between the zombie gladiator fights and Michonne’s rape, The Governor’s actions show that even with the horrifying zombies, that humanity is still ultimately worse. Why? Because we have the power to make decision, the dead do not. Not to mention his zombie daughter that he keeps locked up… Now, a novel examining the inner workings of his mind, how could anyone not want to read this?
If you are a fan of the comics, this is not a novel you can afford to pass up. It uncovers the mysterious background of a heinous villain written in the first person, offering deep insight into the mad mind of The Governor. “How did he come to be the vile man that he is?” and “How he came to run the town?” are two questions that all TWD fans have asked at one time or another. Finally, they will be revealed.
Since issue one, all we have seen was the zombie invasion from Rick’s point of view. For the first time ever Kirkman displays the zombie invasion from outside Rick’s perspective. The Governor and Rick are polar opposites and as the novel concludes, bringing the two together, it will be a treat to see how they came to cross paths.
If you love The Walking Dead, if you love The Governor story arc, if you can’t get enough of TWD, pick up this novel. With horror scribe, Jay Bonansinga, lending a hand Rise of the Governor makes for an intense read that only works to further develop the vast and brutal world of The Walking Dead.
‘The Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor’ Is Available Now! (MSRP $24.99 but it’s $13.43 on Amazon)