Issue 43 is the forty-third issue of Image Comics' The Walking Dead and the first part of Volume 8: Made To Suffer. It was originally published on October 24, 2007. The deluxe colored version is set to be released July 20, 2022.
The Governor is found in his apartment lying on a wooden panel - missing his right arm, left eye hanging out of his socket and possibly castrated - by his right hand men, Gabe and Bruce, who think that he's dead until Cooper tries to kill Penny Blake, and The Governor wakes up and tells him not to. Cooper immediately runs downstairs, to find Bob Stookey, the local town drunk. It's revealed that Bob was a medic. "40 goddamn years ago for about 2 weeks," however, so Bob says that he "can't do shit."
Cooper, however, forces him to do something and they go back to The Governor's place. When Bob sees The Governor, he throws up, and notes he can't even look at him. Cooper then asks Bob if he wants The Governor to die, which Bob doesn't. Cooper yells at him and wants him to do something. Finally, Bob decides to do what he can, and says he needs clean bandages.
Almost a week later, The Governor wakes up, with Gabe beside him in the Woodbury hospital. The Governor, who is very surprised as he hears that Bob had saved him, notes: "That old drunk couldn't draw a straight line -- let alone patch me up. The Governor reveals that it was his plan to send Martinez to the prison, and once he returns the location will be revealed. Later, while he's watching his fish tanks full of heads, Cooper comes to tell him that they found Martínez dead in a field. The Governor announces that he is going to address the townspeople.
The Governor gives a speech to Woodbury survivors in the arena. The Governor paints the survivors living in the prison as savages, who mutilated him while his guard was down and killed Dr. Stevens. He also shows them Caesar Martinez's zombified head claiming they killed him too. All of the survivors are shocked. Many of them agree to participate in an assault on the prison and kill all the people who are living in it.
The Governor is practicing shooting when Bruce and Gabe come and inform him that the searching parties have not yet found the prison. The Governor shooting skills have been diminished since his right arm was cut off.
Later, in his apartment, The Governor finishes pulling out Penny's teeth and proceeds to give her a kiss on the mouth. He throws up and says that he will get used to the taste. Gabe knocks on his door, and tells him that Bruce Cooper has left and the survivors have heard some gunshots. The Governor, Gabe, and some other soldiers go out to find the men, and find all including Sam, and except for Bruce, dead. However, Bruce is barely alive, and choking on his own blood. He says that "they came back...Bald fuck...", and then dies. The Governor then shoots him, to prevent reanimation and gets more vengeful and angry as Bruce was one of his best friends.
Gabe and another survivor eventually locate the Prison. Later, Gabe asks why they can't attack yet. The Governor answers that they are going to wait because the Prison survivors are on their guard now and if they attack later and unexpectedly they would not be ready for an attack. The Governor says goodbye to Penny and leaves Bob to watch her. He is at first worried that Bob will not be able to handle his beloved daughter but he assures him that he has been sober since saving his life.
The Governor, Gabe, and a large number of Woodbury soldiers are gathered up, and are ready for the fight of their lives. The Governor reminds them of the evil deeds of the group in the prison and the army departs the town. The Governor also says that they will see women and children, but according to him: "They don't deserve to live." Gabe asks The Governor if he is coming with them, and he replies that he wouldn't miss this for the world, and he's riding in the tank. The issue ends, when Woodbury tanks and cars are assembled behind the fences, and The Governor yells: "Kill them all!"
- Maggie Greene
- Hershel Greene
- Wes Strunk
- Brian Blake
- Bruce Cooper
- Gabriel Harris
- Calvin Deets
- Bob Stookey
- Rudy Warburton
- Ben Buchholz
- Gloria Pyne
- Austin Ballard
- Lilly Caul
- Johnny Pruitt
- Tom Blanchford
- Arlo Simmons
- Woodbury residents
- Caesar Martínez (Zombified)
- Penny Blake (Zombified)
- Sam Curtis (Corpse)
- Bruce Cooper (Flashback)
- First appearance of Gloria Pyne.
- First appearance of Austin Ballard. (Flashback)
- First appearance of Lilly Caul.
- First appearance of Andy.
- First appearance of Johnny Pruitt.
- First appearance of Tom Blanchford.
- First appearance of Arlo Simmons.
- First appearance of Jared.
- First (and last) appearance of Earl.
- First (and last) appearance of Travis.
- First (and last) appearance of Saul.
- Last appearance of Caesar Martínez. (Zombified)
- Last appearance of Bruce Cooper.
- Last appearance of Calvin Deets.
- Last appearance of Bob Stookey.
- Last appearance of Sam Curtis. (Corpse)
- Creator Robert Kirkman calls this the "flashback issue".
- Kirkman wrote: "[Regarding] the zombie kiss: I was just trying to think of the worst things The Governor could ever do. The Governor is the worst case scenario for what living in this world does to people. I want him to be the most extreme case."
- This issue marks Maggie Greene's 25th appearance.
- The description section in earlier issues reads, "But how did [The Governor] survive his torture at the hands of Michonne?"
- When The Governor arrives at Walmart the corpse of the man whom Michonne decapitated seems to have to changed clothing as previously he was wearing a short sleeved shirt with a vest beneath it but in this issue a jacket appears to be atop of the shirt, similar to the other Woodbury survivor's killed by Michonne.
- Walking Dead #43 Review Look who's baaaack..., IGN, Dan Phillips (October 24, 2007).
- Issue 43, page 29, "Letter Hacks".
- Issue 46, page 26, "Letter Hacks"