Realising that the Dead of Winter comicbook from ONI Press was actually an extension of an incredibly popular tabletop game was a huge eye opener. In this game anything can happen, and that’s what makes it such a fantastic property to expand into a comicbook, however I can’t help but think that there might be a little too much going on in the writers’ heads.
Dead of Winter #2 begins almost as soon as the last left off. After something going awry on a simple supply run, we were left wondering whether our new survivor friends, and of course Sparky, would get out of it alive. Well, we quickly learn that it’s all A-Okay aside from a few superficial wounds. Then we’re introduced into one of the game’s more iconic characters, everyone’s favourite drunk mall Santa: Forrest. Though you quickly realise why exactly your only option is to remove him from your party.
Forrest isn’t exactly the most helpful character in this scenario, especially when Sparky and Carla realise they’ve been separated from the group and there seems to be no other option than exploring the clearly no-longer abandoned police station. Forrest bumbles his way through the lobby causing more chaos than anything bringing unwanted attention to themselves.
This is when we find out where the rest of the gang have ended up, and low and behold they’ve been captured by some sort of wired cop who seems to think the law still applies, despite the world being in the middle of some sort of zombie apocalypse. Each to their own I guess.
The comic spends some time quickly switching between the rest of the group and Forrest, Sparky, and Carla drip feeding us parts of each of their stories, however it seems far too much is happening and happens far too fast. First, we have the wired cop confronting Carla and Sparky causing Sparky to experience flashbacks, then we find that the rest of the crew manage to escape, but not before one of them becomes a zombie snack.
Ultimately it seems like a lot of nothing happens in Dead of Winter #2. Yes, we get to experience some of Sparky’s touching back story, and we also get to experience one of the characters from the game, but all of the other events seem to be shoe horned into the overall story with little focus on each. You don’t really feel a lot for the loss of one of the group which is a shame.
I feel the writers tried to make this particular issue feel quite pivotal with a focus on Sparky’s history, as well as loss and companionship in the group, but it plays out into one of the more forgettable issues of the series so far and considering we’re only two issues in, isn’t very promising.
That being said, I am still interested to see where this story goes over the course of the next couple of issues.