The GeeksverseWhy The Walking Dead #100 Was Important

Why The Walking Dead #100 Was Important
Published on Friday, July 13, 2012 by

Issue one hundred hit shelves this week and will end up being one of the most important comics ever, and it has nothing to do with the contents of the issue.

I hate hype. I really do. It ruins so many stories. And The Walking Dead #100 suffered from the hype. Image didn’t even send out review copies because they didn’t want the huge moment to be spoiled. But it was. It wasn’t as huge as it might have been. Maybe showing up in a non-anniversary/special issue would have helped.

But none of that has anything to do with why The Walking Dead #100 is going to be so important.

It’s not the best written comic. It’s not the best drawn comic. The plot isn’t earth shattering.

So why is it so important?

Comic books are getting more and more mainstream press and wider acknowledgement. It’s common practice now for Marvel and DC to release information Through USA Today or Entertainment Weekly before it hits the comics-specific press. The Avengers is the 3rd highest grossing movie of all time. More and more comic book characters are becoming household names.

And one of the most well known? The Walking Dead.

This isn’t a book with the media powers of Marvel and DC behind it. This is a creator-owned book and Image doesn’t have the power of Marvel or DC, they aren’t even set up to do that. All the attention the book has gotten is due to the book itself.

There are some independent comics that have reached the 100 issue milestone, even some from Image itself, but none have had the cultural impact that The Walking Dead has had. It spawned a new wave of zombie love. So many zombie related comics, video games, novels come after The Walking Dead first appeared. More often then not it’s the highest selling non-Marvel/DC comic.

In alot of ways it’s like the litle engine that could.

Unlike Spawn or Savage Dragon, there was no media blitz (like Image had when created back in the day) to help support sales at the beginning and draw interest. I’m not a fan of Kirkman’s writing or The Walking Dead, but there’s no denying that the book is popular and that is due to the book itself.

Aside from Cerebus and the Savage Dragon, I can’t think of an independent book that has had the same creative team on it for the same length of time. It’s very rare, especially in this day and age, for a creative team to last longer then a year. Adlard has been drawing The Walking Dead for 94 issues. Spawn has gone through multiple writers. Witchblade and the Darkness have gone through multiple writers. Only Savage Dragon stands above The Walking Dead in this category.

But Dragon, as much as I love the book, just doesn’t have the pop cultural impact that the Walking Dead has spawned.

Minimates, action figures, t-shirts, novels, merchandise. You name it, it’s got the Walking Dead involved somehow.

And that’s without even mentioning the highly popular television show.

So why does all that make issue #100 so important?

Think on the Little Engine That Could story.

The Walking Dead just proves that it’s possible for an independent book to achieve this level of success. There are many future “The Walking Deads” out there just waiting to be discovered. The Walking Dead made it, any book can.

Even though I’m not a fan, there’s no denying the impact this series has had and just the good it creates in the industry to have this hit 100.

Here’s to another 100.

2 Responses
    • Usagi¬† Yojimbo is another single creator book to add to the long running list alongside of Savage Dragon, Invincible, and Cerebus. Although like the rest it doesn’t have the cultural resonance of Walking Dead. It should but it doesn’t.¬†

    • Anybody pick up the Walking Dead trading card packs this week?

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