While the reason for this week's dedication is sad - it is awesome that we honor Old Man with a decent book.
I, Zombie #1
Published by Vertigo Comics
Written by Chris Roberson
Illustrated by Michael Allred
A promising debut with fantastic art. Really what more could you want from a number one?
What holds this book back from being perfect is that it maybe has too many influences, even if it does wear them on its sleeves. There are shades of Scooby-Doo, Buffy, Pushing Daisies, and maybe even a little nod to Chew.
However, it is an engaging read with a clever take on zombies. In a field often way too broad to make a mark, this one does a fine job of making itself a player.
Gwen Dylan is a zombie. She is also a grave digger – this is, of course, a front for her to get fresh “meat” without all the unpleasantness of a George Romero film. She is intelligent – which is displayed by her ability to narrate her own story. This unlikely attribute for a zombie is explained through a monthly need for braaaainnnnnnzzzzz or she turns into a mindless roamer, if you will.
She has friends - an apparent ghost named Ellie (her best friend), a were-terrier named Scott (or “Spot) who wants to make out with her, and Dixie the maybe former mob hit man who runs a local diner.
In this single issue, we get expert exposition and character development. We also get at least two mysteries to take the story forward – one being some likely Vampire activity at the local Paint Ball attraction and the other brings up the failed ABC sitcom.
This is a dense comic. There is more here for a single dollar than most comics that cost $4.99 and declare themselves giant sized or provide second features.
To top it all off is Allred in full on pop art mode. Ellie is a mod styled girl who would be at home in a Who musical or a Dave Gibbons’ Graphic Novel. The gravediggers look working class sheik in their bowling shirts. Even attention is paid to making the box of the doll look hipsterrific.
Roberson is a relative newcomer to me, but with this and Cinderella – I may have a new favorite writer to pursue.
Pull list: Afterlife with Archie, Bodies, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, Coffin Hill, Dead Boy Detectives, The Fade Out, The Goon, Harley Quinn, Hinterkind, Iron Fist: The Living Weapon,The Maxx Maximized, Miracleman, Ms. Marvel, Multiversity, Rasputin, Rocket Raccoon, Sandman: Overture, Silver Surfer, The Walking Dead