Ladies and gentlefolk, in celebration of Hallowe'en being JUST 3 months away, I'm going to review for you a horror webcomic! (Note: Do not confuse with a "horrible" webcomic - that's what 'A Softer World' is for, ha-ha!) But seriously guys, there is only 96 days until the next 'We'en. I'm not kidding, that's 2298 hours as I type this. Whoa! I gotsta go get my costume soon. I'd love to dress up as Checkerboard Nightmare, but my ass isn't quite good enough yet. Another year of squats and maybe it will be. Checkerboard Nightmare - 2010.
Anyway, like I said, horror webcomic. But not just horror, there's humour. Horror and humour. That's a good, but infrequent, combination. Byron Rempel has for us a just such a combination with his webcomic The Zombie. As you can probably guess, it's about a zombie, doing what zombies do. Y'know, eating brains, killing people, blood, gore, Republicans, etc.
Now, what strikes me about zombies, is that they're like brainless vampires. But! They can walk around in the Sun. That's me, always looking for the positives in life. Any life. Or afterlife. What I like about The Zombie's story is that we hear a good bit from the zombie's perspective. His inner thoughts. Why he's so frickin' angry. He's a zombie! If I were a zombie and capable of sentient thought, I'd be angry too.
This comic at first doesn't seem to go with certain comic standards either. I think it's the 5th page where you actually get the first speech bubble. Until then, it's slightly different. Zombie inner monologue written in scrawl. What I'd image a cross between the characters of JD from Scrubs and Jack from The Shining would be like. Yes.
Anyway, the story quickly moves onwards. We don't always follow the zombie, and more characters are introduced, though not much is given about them individually yet. This webcomic is still very, very new.
Let us discuss the art, shall we? Mr Rempel's style at the beginning is sketchy. As in, it looks to have been sketched. Very well sketched, I might add, but simple. It's also in colour, where available. The style retains its sketchy quality throughout, but gains a cleaner look as time goes on. Colouring is especially good for the forest scenes in the latest strips. Kudos on that, bro. There's something about the faces/facial expressions that bothers me sometimes, but I can't put my finger on it. Some are a little too bland compared to others, while some are too cartoonish compared to the background, which is of excellent quality. Tis confusing for my eyes. But here's a sampler anyway.Now, I know you're all expecting the big criticism to be "Yeah, whatever, zombies have been done to death (Pun!)". Well, that's not the critique. If anything, high praise goes to the use of zombies. If you're going to do a horror series in anything, even webcomics, always go with an industry standard. Zombies, vampires, mummies, werewolves, etc. What happens when you step outside that box? You get shit like "The Blob". That's not scary. That's a goddamn jell-o.
The Zombie gets a 3 outta 5 paw dealies. Give it a read. I'm taking a break from this blog for two (count 'em, 2) weeks. I'm working on a new Star Trax and have a boat-load of freelance guff to do. If I've got time, I'll re-do this site a little! And who knows, I have plans for new features, twice weekly-updates maybe? Interviews? Nap times? I like that last one... Anyway, see y'all on August 15th. Keep on readin' Star Trax! And also, these other comics!