Zombies: A Brief History of Decay
Written By Oliver Peru
Illustrated By: Sophian Cholet and Simon Champelovier
Distributed By: Insight Editions
Reviewed by Melissa Minners
I like to read about the zombie apocalypse. This wasn’t always the case, but, after watching Resident Evil and playing the game, I was hooked on the zombie universe. I especially love reading or watching new takes on the zombie storyline and usually check this sort of stuff out around Halloween, but a recent offer to check out a new graphic novel about the zombie apocalypse drew me back in early.
Zombies: A Brief History of Decay takes place sometime after the zombie apocalypse has begun. Sam Coleman is a survivor who left Seattle at the onset of the outbreak, forced to leave his daughter behind. Now, though he has yet to run into many survivors, Sam somehow believes beyond hope that his daughter has survived and sets out to find her in the city. He is aided by some sort of immunity to the disease, allowing him to be bit, yet not succumb.
His travels allow him to encounter a young woman and her epileptic brother. The young girl does not survive and Sam finds himself raising the boy as his own son, while still hoping to find his own daughter. They come across a group of survivors, where they finally find Sam’s daughter, but a zombie horde forces him to leave her so she and her new “brother” can escape with the others. Meanwhile, another group of survivors, led by a man named Clay, have been zombie free for quite some time. Clay has been using radio wave technology to repel the zombies. Unfortunately, this technology is actually steering the zombies toward others and Clay is determined to rescue those he has put in danger.
Can Clay get to the survivors in time to save them from the horde he has created? Can Sam survive the horde and make his way back to his daughter or will he finally succumb to the zombie virus?
Zombies: A Brief History of Decay is something of a cross between The Walking Dead and World War Z. Just as in The Walking Dead, we see the best and worst of what humans can become in a time like this. As in World War Z, the zombies are of varying varieties. Some are slow and easily evaded, while others are superfast and have a different sort of metabolism that allows them to appear much less decayed.
In this tale, though we see the actions of adults in trying to keep people alive during the apocalypse, the main thread in this tale is that the future is in the children survivors. The birth of a baby during all the madness and the group of children Sam comes across while trying to make it back to his daughter seems to perpetuate this thread.
The edition of Zombies: A Brief History of Decay that I received was still not a finalized edition and thus there were some problems reading it. The illustrations were completely separate from the writing and often times the words of two characters would actually be jumbled together, making things very confusing. And yet, I muddled my way through, because I felt the bones of the story were still interesting enough. I would love to see a finalized edition with the words and the illustrations together. What I’ve seen of the illustrations were awesome and it would be a much more enjoyable experience to not try to guess as to who was talking.