Robert Kirkman is the master of "ebb and flow" storytelling!
In the wake of last issues all out barrage on Rick's quaint little community, Kirkman takes the time to reflect on the changes thrust upon his characters. He sets up some well crafted character driven moments that show how much damage has been bestowed upon them both physically and emotionally, while delving ever deeper into Neegan's bipolar threats. I don't care what critics say, the character of Neegan is so much fun to read that it's almost mesmerizing! One moment you are shocked by the string of vulgarity that flow from his lips, the next you are lulled into a false sense of security as he ensures you he would never hurt a fly and then -- BANG -- he bashes in your best friend's head with a barbed wire baseball bat! Insane? Too over the top? Of course! But, there is also an intriguing factor woven into the character, a synergy of opposites that transcends past the level of shock to create a character that is both comedic and horrifying!
This issue lays the groundwork for what is to come in the future of The Walking Dead universe. Some have fallen, others have had their desire for battle washed away and others still, face an uncertain future in the hands of Neegan. It is a time to regroup, a time to mourn those that have been lost and most of all, a time to move on. Fans of the AMC television show never got the true importance of this object, but the comic fans will give a slow nod of remembrance as Rick finally "hangs up the phone."