I am going through a phase in my life (another one) where I get slightly obsessed with all things Zombie. The last time the obsession took hold was when I played Resident Evil in the Nineties, and the time before that was when I got to see Dawn Of The Dead for the first time on VHS video in the Eighties. The reason I am ‘slightly obsessed’ now is down to 2 fantastic pieces of writing, the first one is Max Brooks’
‘World War Z’ which acts as an ‘oral history of the Zombie war’ and tells of how humans from all over the world fought back against legions of the undead. The second reason is Robert Kirkmans’ ‘The Walking Dead’ comic series, published by Image. It’s highly addictive, more like a drug, and Kirkman (the writer) really knows how to build up tension and leave each issue on a cliffhanger moment. I want to write more about ‘The Walking Dead’ at a later date, as at the minute there is a major story arc underway, and I want to get through that before I begin to enthuse about its genius.
I got back into comic books in a big way a few months back, mainly off the back of the Marvel Comics ‘Civil War’ story, and ‘The Walking Dead’. The thing is, how do you know what (comic book titles) are worth picking up and which are to be avoided when you haven’t really been reading them for several years? Well, you go on forums, you can check out the ‘what other people are buying who bought this’ approach of Amazon or Play, or you can look at previews of titles on Comic Companies websites, like the impressive Image Comics website, where most new titles covers and first five pages are there for you to peruse.
Some publishers are going the whole hog and putting a title online as well as in the traditional physical format. As I mentioned earlier, I am slightly obsessed with Zombies at the minute, and especially Zombies in comic books. I have been snapping up the whole ‘Marvel Zombies’ related titles (mainly written by Robert Kirkman), getting into Image Comics ‘Crawlspace – XXXombies’ (70’s porn stars and zombies face-off, with a bit of the powerful George C Scott film ‘Hardcore’ thrown in for good measure), and even checked out the Marvel Max title, Zombie. Online, you have got another title – Last Blood, created by Bobby & Chris Cosby, and published by Blatant Comics, but available to view here;
The concept is a twist on the traditional Zombie titles, with Vampires protecting Humans from Zombies, so their food supply is not affected. The site reprints all the issues so far (1 -3) and each page is readable online (it is not my preferred method of reading a comic). Each page has underneath it a few lines of comment from the creators, and underneath that some comments from users on the site. It’s a good package, and worth your time in having a look at it if you are into Zombies in comics. The writing is nicely paced, and although I wasn’t impressed with the first few pages of art, it certainly starts improving and you get used to the style quickly. It’s not great art, but it does its job well enough. Overall, I would give the 12 pages I have read an overall 7 out of 10.
Image are my favourite Comics publisher by far – check them out here –
Official site for World War Z, by Max Brooks (son of Mel Brooks, honest!)