The habits of highly effective zombie types

One of the problems I have with people who look at something, as the (AWESOME) Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion, and say “Err they’re not real zombies!” is we don’t really have a static definition of a zombie anyway. The zombie really isn’t that old as a fictional monster and is constantly evolving. It’s taken bits of lore from other monsters, and as always, authors and screenwriters lead the charge in creating unique perspectives. Would anyone be interested in vampires if they never changed (let’s ignore sparkles for the moment before everyone’s head blows up)? If every zombie were exactly the same and never changed, Romero could never have been the Godfather of Zombies. He did change them. And are we glad he did!

The Voodoo Zombie

  • Controlled by one person
  • Created by powders and potions
  • Tool using
  • Rarely is there recognition of former life
  • Can be changed back – salt, death of bokor/sorcerer
  • Used or created for a purpose – slavery, retribution, or fear of losing loved one
  • Not a horde

The Romero Zombie (*=some movies only)

  • Dead and undead
  • Created by infection
  • Mindless, no will but hunger*
  • No changing back
  • Eat flesh
  • Not tool using *
  • No glimpse of recognition of former life *
  • Physically less able
  • Quick transition
  • Rotting

Variations on the modern zombie

  • Can sometimes affect the long dead (Return of the Living Dead)
  • Changes between what causes zombies – aliens, bio-weapons, natural virus, technology, psychological on a society-wide level
  • Can talk
  • Have some memory, not complete
  • Can run, climb, jump, chase
  • Differences in ability to be able to find people and how those senses can be deceived – smell, hearing, sight
  • Hierarchy of zombies – some able to run with others not, physical and mental abilities not evenly spread
  • Rotting
  • Lack of consciousness,or may have a highly focused will

The Romantic Zombie

  • Physically undead
  • Limits on physical/mental abilities
  • Limited lifespan
  • Can talk
  • Rarely eat/require flesh
  • Can retain mind, it can be returned (not necessarily specific memories of their individual past)
  • Sometimes infectious
  • Hero never overtly rotting
  • Some sense of society/culture amongst them

(Pics from IMDB)


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