The Zombie Paradox

Zombies love to eat brains—we all agree on that, yes? Good. And the most sure fire way to kill a zombie is to destroy the brain. Right. My question then is this: where do little zombies come from?

Think about it. If a zombie munches on a dead man’s noggin to get at that sweet, sweet brain-meat how does the man ever rise up to join his undead pals? He’s got no brain!

Unless of course zombies don’t eat brains. Could this be some kind of conspiracy to scare us into thinking (with our brains!) that zombies are all brain-thirsty cannibals? Maybe they just want to nibble on a kneecap. But would you be afraid of an advancing horde of zombies moaning about random joints?


See? Not scary. So, it has to be brains, which brings us back to the paradox.

Consider also that the long dead don’t necessarily have much in the gray matter department to begin with. That stuff deteriorates rather quickly after death turning to mush in a matter of days if left out in the sun. Stuffed into a top-of-the-line coffin with a couple pints of embalming fluid will keep it fresh a while longer, but in a year or so it’s all gone. That would make most cemeteries safe zones when it comes to the zombie apocalypse. Unless...

What if it’s not the brain at all, but the idea of it?

Sounds like magic to me, which makes sense. The zombie menace was originally born of a voodoo curse, was it not? I know there’s a whole bunch of pseudo scientific research out there about prions, mutant proteins, viruses and the like. Bah! It’s magic I tells ya! Nothing else makes sense. And if it’s magic then simply the idea of a brain would be enough for the corpse to reanimate. Conversely, the perceived destruction of said “brain” would destroy the zombie. He thinks he’s supposed to die so he does. Makes perfect sense!

So eat up Mr. Zombie—and don’t forget the brains!

Thoughts on The Walking Dead

My thoughts on AMC’s The Walking Dead are all over the place. It entertains me. It angers me. It makes me twitch (not in a good way). I thought the pilot was brilliant, but found the rest of Season 1 a slow decent into blah. Season 2 was better and worse. The first half was a long slog to a small, but lovely payoff. The second half, which ended just in time for AMC to start putting all that ad revenue where it’s desperately needed (lining Mad Men pockets), was up and down. Kudos on the big kills. Boo on the crazy. Do we really need psycho Rick? (Answer: maybe.)

A little history: I’m not a fan of the comics. I know, I know...just didn’t think they were that good. Loved the idea, just not the execution. Been considering a second look, so maybe if I read a little deeper I’ll be sold. But having no reference does give me a fresh perspective on the show, which I’m not sure I want to give up. I like not knowing what’s going to happen even if the show is often predictable. And strange, unpredictable things do seem afoot. Exhibit A: Andrea's new friend. A sword-wielding forest Jedi with no-armed zombie minions? Count me in! I’ve desperately wanted to see something in the writing other than the doom and gloom moodiness that drives the show. I would have suggested a little humor, but over-the-top weird is cool, too.

And I must admit the show’s success pleases me. It demonstrates a stable, sizeable fan base for mainstream zombie material, a genre to which I will soon be contributing (Portlandtown, October 16, buy many copies). And even when the story veers into blah-blah-land, I still watch. A bit schadenfreudian perhaps, but we writers are a jealous bunch.

Where does that leave me? Cautiously curious, maybe even hopeful. Granted, I wouldn’t mind if 90% of the cast took a header in the first episode of Season 3, but at least I’ll be watching, ever hopeful. Go Team Zombie!

A Sign of Things to Come

I just finished reading my novel Portlandtown, probably for the last time prior to publication. Once more through to check for any lingering typos, make final tweaks, add more zombies, etc. I made a few changes, mostly tweaks (an author can never let go, you know?). At this point I think I've read the story...two dozen times? Maybe not quite, but close. The wife has read it 4 or 5 times and she wants nothing more to do with it. Can't blame her. It's scary!

As for you, future reader, I ask that you only read it once. Twice if you really like it. (You only have to buy one copy, however.)

The Wampug Strikes Back!

Yes, this is exactly what you think it is: Awesome. Thanks to Boodapug for the heads up. (And Chubbs the Pug for the awesome.)

Monster Mash-Ups

Every once in a while one comes across talent that just has to be shared...and today is that a while. The above image was lovingly pilfered from the blog of Dan Hipp, aka MISTERHIPP. There is nothing stopping you from going there right now and enjoying a leisurely scroll through dozens of awesome mash-ups. Seriously, this is one of of the best "I have nothing better to do with my time but draw pictures for you for free" sites on the web. Go. Now.

Stop-Motion Zombie Awesomeness

I think the title of this post says it all. Really, just awesome. If you aren't excited for this movie (opening in August), well, then why the heck are you visiting a site called Zombie Clambake?

If you want to check out the trailer in HD head on over to Apple.

Fade In...

The opening credit sequence from The Fades. Cool, right? Yeah, I thought so.

All Hail The Fades

This one came out of nowhere, didn't it? Oh, sure, we all like the BBC and the oddball collection of cooler-than-our television series. (Luther being a recent favorite). Still, I didn't see The Fades coming and that's something of a surprise given the content. Ghosts. Zombies. End of the world. Superheroes. Pop culture references up the wazoo. Hell, it's everything a genre junkie could want and--here's the kicker--it's really good. Good story, good characters, good pacing, good...well, just about everything. And it's unpredictable, which is a bonus. Maybe it's the British take no prisoners approach to television that makes it so refreshing, but I like it.

The teaser above is a bit cheeky in the narration, but it's honest. (The show is genuinely funny.) There are plenty of videos on the official site, but I'd recommend seeing it as cold as possible. Why ruin the surprise(s)?