Episode 408: Missing in Action

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Zombie Cliche Lookout: Where Is He?

It’s never good when someone turns up missing from your group of survivors in the midst of the zombie apocalypse. Not only is that person likely in danger, dead, or now a zombie, but the group has to stop whatever they were doing and figure out how to deal with the crisis. Do they go back and try to find the person? Wait at the meeting point longer? Start yelling and hope they can find their way to the group? Just abandon them? There’s no good choice here.

Anything you do is going to open you up to problems. Waiting around, shouting, and going back to look for the missing person increases the odds of a zombie attack. Just abandoning them, which is pretty awful in its own right, also weakens your group overall. This is why sticking together is important.

About this Episode:

I still don’t know how Murphy affords a Range Rover on a cop’s salary. Maybe he comes from money, or he managed to get a really good deal on a used model that he was able to fix up. In related news, the Range Rover is my dream car, so I’m projecting a bit here.

Other News:

In case you missed it yesterday, we’re running a new contest with some pretty sweet prizes. You’d better act fast, it ends on Thanksgiving! Check out the full story here.

Discussion Question: Missing Persons

Imagine that you’re in a medium sized group of survivors, and they are all relative strangers. These are just the people you happened to fall in with when the zombies started doing their thing. As you’re making your way across some territory, one person goes missing. What do you do? Are they worth waiting or going back for? Do you split up the group? Do you just move on and hope they can catch up?

41 thoughts on “Episode 408: Missing in Action”

  1. Typo alert: Zombie Cliche lookout, sixth sentence: Abandoned–>abandon! 😀

    • Oops. Fixed.

    • Sorry about late comments again, but I really wanted to tell this:
      When I was little, I read this book in which a criminal whose name was Dave “dirt bag” smith, was shoved uncomfortably in a washing machine by three fellow prisoner s making the escape….(I”m not saying this as an insult!!!)

      • I agree with Inez. Brent is acting like a jerk and no doubt he will attract more zombies or get himself eaten. Either way.

        • You could argue that he was going the extra mile to help the group.

  2. Regarding Murphy’s choice of vehicle: In a zombie apocalypse, he will probably be regretful that the debt collectors trying to catch up on his payments and repossess the car will probably also be joining the zombie horde! 😀

    Also, car dealers will sell anyone a car, doesn’t matter if they can actually afford it or not! 😉 What matters is if the sales rep is able to get the person ensnared in so much paperwork to fill out that they think they can afford it without reading the fine print! 😀

    • Hah, right you are about car dealers.

  3. As to Brent’s predicament, I think they should attempt to get Lou in the car and then go after Brent in the car, it’s a lot more maneuverable and is faster, so unless it’s parked right outside the shop, it will afford them some extra time to get to Brent before the zombies do! 😀

    • One thing they definitely shouldn’t do, though, if they do go by car, is toot the horn. Gunshots are a short sharp noise, car horns will be much more effective at attracting zombies! 😀

      • Yes indeed; the horn should be off limits.

        • I think you should let the group save Brent, but at the cost of having the zombies hot on their heels all the way back to the car! There’s nothing like hindsight to teach them how to handle future expeditions! 😉

      • But if you’re inside the car, does it matter?

        Use the car as a distraction. Turn it over. Lock it into 4 low. Lean on the horn. When the zombies come, and roll over them, nice and slow…


        • True enough, although I’ve done enough back-road driving to know not to trust 4WD.

  4. Murphy’s group really needs to get plans of action sorted out in a crisis: Things like checking up on the rest of the group, giving detailed enough orders, etc. I wonder is any level of detail enough for a zombie crisis or should someone write newcomers to the zombie apocalypse a handbook? 😀

    • Excellent points, BrickVoid.

      • I don’t know if this is that kind of group. They don’t look accustomed to giving orders, or taking orders, except for Murphy. They’ll either think, or sink.

        Now, Col. McBadass’s group, I think they know how to give and take orders. I just can’t wait to see how much they rock ‘n’ roll, and how much they’re chairborne rangers…

        • We’ll be seeing more of that group pretty soon here.

        • @Dave: You mean that as if they’ll be here Monday saving Brent’s ass from the zombie horde! 😀

          @Bo: I think there is plenty of room for this group’s dynamics to start kicking in and shining when it’s most needed. What really needs to happen though is that whoever’s in charge really needs to start taking control of being in charge! 🙂

        • That’s an interesting idea: being in charge. I see this group as being very voluntaryist, at least for the time being. Eventually folks will start choosing sides, between Murphy and the Inez, with Stewart as the contrarian. When the groups finally come together things will get more confusing. I predict that folks that are used to working in groups, like Barb the nurse, and Murphy the cop, will get along well together, as long as reason prevails.

          From what I’ve see, Barb and Clark seem to get along better. Certainly it’s clear to see who’s got their heads and asses wired together and who doesn’t.

  5. I would just abandon them. I mean, I made it clear: “stick together”. If they don’t follow the rule, then goodbye. I’m not being mean, but splitting up is begging that people get killed.

    • What if they split off involuntarily? Grabbed from behind, or something like that?

      • Depends upon the group, and the number of zombies. Is the group all able-bodied? Any elderly or children? Are there hordes of zombies, or just a few? Under what circumstances is the person lost? Did you see him or her get swarmed?

        • It’s the cutest of all the children.

      • I think that in a group of people, if someone gets grabbed, we could notice. Cuz that person would scream or warn us in someway. But if a stranger got grabbed by a zed, and was close to me, I would definitely try to save him/her. But it kinda depends on the situation. Was that stranger grabbed by a couple zeds? Or a huge horde?

  6. My reply is getting old, but again, I don;t know what I would do. It all depends on the missing person (is the missing person my new love interest 😛 or is the guy missing the one ass who keeps hitting on my love interest haha 😉 ) and again the situation. It also depends on who is in the group. One thing I do know: a lot needs to happen before I would split the group up! I can imagine going back alone though (depending on if there is another strong person in the group whom I trust to keep the group relatively safe)

    Something different. I like that you are experimenting with the depth of field. I myself am experimenting with that too. If I look at today’s comic I am wondering if it is too much sometimes. I really love how the backgrounds turns out, but I wonder if the foreground characters aren’t to blurry. In the last panel you focused on Inez, and even Lou gets a little blurry, so maybe the depth of field is a little strong here.
    I realize this is a very personal view and there is no right or wrong, it’s just my cup of tea (it doesn’t make me like your comic any less though 😉 ).

    • Yeah, I don’t know that I’ve got this depth of field thing completely dialed in just yet. I’m probably overdoing it.

  7. Hey, why is my comment in moderation?

    • Oh wait I see…. I thought it was another word for donkey in English, isn’t it?

      • I’m really not sure why it got moderated. The spam filter I use can sometimes be a little overzealous.

  8. I think I’ll give this contest a miss. The prizes look great, but all my Lego is now packed away and stored now. I did a YouTube video though, using a clip from the first episode of The Walking Dead Season 4.


    • I saw this before; nicely done.

      Too bad you won’t be able to take part in this contest, but don’t worry, there will be more.

      • And hey, Brett got us some food! I can’t wait to see what tasty cools he brought back to this nonspecific location!

  9. I think I’d leave the lost member to fend for himself, assuming he or she was over the age of about thirteen, not for some “good of the group” utilitarian bullshit, but for good, old-fashioned selfishness. I am not going to risk my own neck, or the lives of my noncombatant family members (and I have a few) for someone I don’t know. I have a lot of responsibility; and looking over hill and dale for someone without the sense that God gave a goose is not one of them.

    Everything in the ZPAW is dynamic. I am not sure if I am moving or staying. That’s the rub: Patton stated that fixed fortifications are a testament to man’s folly. We have to prepare for both zombies and the more clever “Governor’s men”. What to do? Probably a bit of both. Set up a stronghold for night, and go hunt the zombies during the day.

    • I appreciate the candidness here Bo. Your lack of bullshit it always refreshing.

  10. BTW; did you see the new series of Lego minifigures (from the Lego movie)?


    Looks like there are three zombie-isch figures in there! 😀

    • Oh, I am all over those…

      Can’t wait for the new series. 😉

    • Oh, those are super cool.

      • This is probably the first series of CMF that I want more than half of. Aside from the Nacho Guy, the mermaid, and the Panda Guy, I wouldn’t mind one of each of those.

  11. brent,you fucking dickhead

  12. I’ve slowly been taught the mentality that no one is ever going to wait for me, so why wait for them? I’d probably leave unless I have some sort of debt to pay to that person.

    • That’s about how I feel. I am on my own. No cavalry is coming to save me. May as well accept that now, and eliminate the time wasted in denial.