Michonne it the ultimate in girl power! A zombie hunter with finesse, lacking in compassion when it comes to the undead, but with plenty to spare when it comes to those weaker than herself.
Michonne (portrayed on the series by Danai Gurira) strode into Walking Dead comic and television lore as a hooded figure with a katana strapped to her back, and leading a pair of maimed zombies on chain. Michonne is a great ally, but enemies who have messed with her soon learn the hard way you do not want to make her angry. She has plenty of reason to be angry, too. She had a pretty nice life, prior to the incident.
Michonne’s sword is a standard katana, the sword of choice used by the samurai of feudal Japan. This weapon is long, thin, simple and attractive, and is right on target for lopping off Walker noggins.
The interesting thing about her current weapon of choice is Michonne wasn’t always a fan of the sword. According to her origin comic, written by Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman (with art by Charles Adlard), Michonne was an upwardly mobile city girl (and mother, in the television show version) with a nice apartment, good job and boyfriend — certainly not a warrior woman type. When the walkers hit her happy home, she went looking for a gun or other weapon in neighbors’ homes and ran across the sword. Upon Michonne’s first meeting with her now favorite weapon, she said in the comic “The neighbor’s boy collected swords. Hated that before. Would swear he killed our dog with one. That night I wasn’t so upset about it.”
This story can be found in the 2012 Michonne Special of The Walking Dead Comics from Image. The story was originally published in another magazine, but the reprint in the comic reprint includes an additional story, and is a much better purchase.
When Michonne made it back home, she learned everyone she loved, including her boyfriend, was gone. It was later revealed the armless walker pets she used to mask her from other walkers were once her boyfriend and his buddy.
For those who don’t own this issue, there are still plenty available on eBay, but not all for them are asking a reasonable price. Shop around and hit the long-boxes at the comic shop. There’s also an amateur YouTube video of taken from the comic for those who just want to read the story, but don’t need to scrounge for their own copy.
Where to Find It:
First and foremost, it needs to be pointed out a katana is a BIG SHARP SWORD, not a toy, so this is not something younger fans (hopefully none of them actually watch the show, either), should ever own. There is a latex rubber version, though, including costume replicas specific to Michonne.
Since Michonne has her own legion of cosplayers, these latex swords are available for less than $20, along with Michonne wigs and other items, at various party and costume sites like Spirit Halloween. The cosplay site Carbon Costume also has has a good DIY Michonne costume guide.
For older fans and those who understand not to actually impale anyone, there are some great Michonne style katanas out there. The officially liscensed version can be found on its own or with a gruesome little display stand and “Michonne” signature etching. As far as cost, one of the least expensive places we’ve found this is through a catalog called BudK, proprietors in all things pointy, including many movie, television and game replicas. However, it still comes in around $213 even there
Cost is probably the biggest difference between an official Michonne repilica katana and a regular katana sword. Regular katanas, can be as inexpensive as $20 or $30, or over $200, depending on the quality, but there are plenty of choices that resemble Michonne’s swords on BudK, Museum Replicas, True Swords and other sites.
Museum Replicas even has some fun katana chopsticks for $5.
Like Daryl Dixon, Michonne does have her following, and there are plenty of custom made girl power zombie killer items available in her honor, as well as tees, hairpieces and pop art. One of the most attractive items is Michonne Sling Bag with a strap that pays tribute to both her folky headband and her katana handle. These retail for $79.99 from the official shop, but can be found at other sites for close to that price range.
Michonne may not have started out wanting to be the coolest female in zombie-hunting lore, but she’s certainly succeeded. Long may her heart be true and her blade be accurate.
Originally published May 13, 2015.