little known fact about spiders is that some shed
12/13/05 page 4
2, page 3
recent readers of Ultimate Fantastic Four will
likely remember the dimension that plays host to Marvel
Zombies #1, but, wow, does it work well for
such a strange spinoff.
Oh, let’s be honest: this has been
in the works for a while and would’ve been released
regardless of whether people hated “Crossover”
surprising thing is that writer Robert Kirkman is able to
start from the climactic moment of that arc, when the alternate
reality Magneto stays behind and destroys the portal. As
readers will remember, that was brave not only because the
explosion would most likely kill him, but the area around
the blast radius was swarming with zombified superheroes.
Now, Mags has to take on an army of the
undead alone, and we watch enthusiastically as he does just
what we expect, hurling girders and cars into his enemies,
making sure to decapitate them whenever possible, and avoiding
getting bitten at all costs. And then, in the triumphant
moment when it seems like Magneto will dominate them like
the lovably deific bastard he is, the zombie Wasp pops up
behind him and takes a chunk out of his neck.
Hook, line, and sinker.
knows we’re expecting a miniseries about Magneto powering
through the zombie Earth and eventually triumphing (maybe
even saving the last of humanity and starting a new society
based more on Xavier’s vision than his own). Why,
that’s the kind of stuff we see all the time in alternate
But no, Kirkman kills off Magneto (keeping
him around just long enough to mislead us as well as reveal
that Asteroid M is still floating above the Earth and housing
the last remnants of humanity). The zombies swarm him, rip
him to shreds and feast on his entrails.
And then what does he do? He sits us down
with the zombies and has us watch them discuss their plight.
How there’s no more food around. How they no longer
breathe, bleed, digest, or feel pain. Even removing their
brains doesn’t kill them, so is it even possible for
them to die?
like most of the work Kirkman’s done for Marvel, but
this is the kind of unique story that put him on the map
in the first place. Zombies and self-examination aside,
it bears absolutely no resemblance to The Walking Dead.
These zombies are intelligent, thoughtful, strange, and
on a mission to eat every living thing they see.
Of course, by choosing such an unusual path,
Kirkman’s opened his story up to any number of pitfalls,
and it’s always possible it’ll start to fester
like the zombies it features, but the foreshadowing of Asteroid
M promises to keep the miniseries moving. Marvel Zombies
scores a definite win on this outing. No prior reading required,
you can just pick it up and enjoy the carnage– but
stay for the banter.
banter could save Outsiders #31...
Shift? You're taking SHIFT?!?
It seems like, no matter what happens, this
book can’t keep from going down the tubes on a regular
basis. Since Judd Winick usually does a decent job of writing
it, that usually means we put the blame on the ever-changing
And, sweet lord almighty, do they have a
bad time of it this month.
Apparently, penciller Matthew Clark couldn’t
finish the issue, so we’re subjected to a couple truly
appalling scenes by Dietrich Smith. While Clark seems more
than willing to leave backgrounds empty, Smith skips backgrounds
entirely. Worse yet, normally reliable colorist Guy Major
doesn’t make up for the lack of detail, and the end
result is possibly the worst looking mainstream comic art
of the year.
Story-wise, Winick gives us a nice moment
where Grace reminds Arsenal that he’s more of a swashbuckler
than the brooding leader type Nightwing is, which prompts
Roy to lead the team on a crusade against the Society. Meanwhile,
Donna Troy organizes Starfire, Jade, Captain Marvel Jr.,
and Shift to join her Infinite Crisis army, but things go
awry when Marvel senses the forces of magic going out of
whack and Starfire feels the presence of her god.
Frankly, you could get all the facts from
reading a summary paragraph. Actually, you just did.
Aside from the ending where something goes
wrong and a new foe appears on the scene, you’ll get
everything you need to know from the advertisements. Do
yourself a favor and avoid buying this issue at all costs.
The next issue might not make you want to gouge your eyes
out, but this one will have you digging a melon-baller into
your eye sockets in no time.