Deadlines: News roundup 2/19/10

Posted by Cory Casciato On February - 19 - 2010

deadlines

A daily roundup of all the undead news that shambles into view… Bookmark the home page or add the RSS feed to your reader for your daily dose of walking dead. Got news tips? E-mail me at cory.casciato[AT]gmail.com.

George A. Romero’s Survival of the Dead will get feature coverage and be featured on the cover in the April issue of Fangoria. (A World on Fire)

As the blogger who posted this notes, the timing may be in awfully poor taste given the recalls, but hey: Toyota has an ad featuring zombies! (Jalopnik)

Writer A. M. Esmonde has a forthcoming book/screenplay called Deathwatch, about a community beset by the undead trying to stop them and solve the mystery of whence they came. Zombie Command has more details and a preview of the intro and first chapter. (Zombie Command)

UK-based zombie fans will get the Ken Foree-starring, Serbian-made Apocalypse of the Dead (formerly known as Zone of the Dead) on DVD and VOD March 1. No word yet on a US release. (Horror Society)

If unlocking a “classic camera” mode in Resident Evil 5‘s latest DLC sounds like fun, Kotaku will tell you how and show you some screenshots of what it looks like. (Kotaku)

Deadlines: News roundup 1/22/10

Posted by Cory Casciato On January - 22 - 2010

deadlines

A daily roundup of all the undead news that shambles into view… Bookmark the home page or add the RSS feed to your reader for your daily dose of walking dead. Got news tips? E-mail me at cory.casciato[AT]gmail.com.

A few tweaks are coming to Left 4 Dead 2‘s versus mode, including bots and changes to auto-spawning in finales. (Left 4 Dead Blog)

Zombie author Eric S. Brown (he writes about zombies, he is not a zombie himself, just to be clear) is interviewed about his zombie work, his non-zombie work, how he got started writing and lots more. (The Horror Fiction Review)

Take a poll to answer the burning question of which potential zombie TV series you are most looking forward to: AMC’s Walking Dead or MTV’s rumored Dawn of the Dead? C’mon, is there really any question there? (Geeks of Doom)

Are apocalyptic movies, including zombie apocalypse movies, the new Westerns? (Videopium)

Deadlines: News roundup 12/14/09

Posted by Cory Casciato On December - 14 - 2009

deadlines

A daily roundup of all the undead news that shambles into view… Bookmark the home page or add the RSS feed to your reader for your daily dose of walking dead. Got news tips? E-mail me at cory.casciato[AT]gmail.com.

It won’t be here until spring 2010, but the first DLC for Left 4 Dead 2 has been announced. It’s “The Passing” and it unites the survivors from the new game with the survivors from the original. You also get a new co-op mission, play mode, gun, melee weapon, uncommon-common zombie and lots more, so it sounds to be substantial. (Steam News)

Character actor Thomas Haden Church will star in the upcoming FEARNet horror-comedy webseries Zombie Roadkill, from Sam Raimi’s Ghost House Pictures. It’s about a cursed road that brings the dead back to life. There’s a squirrel. (Tubefilter News)

If you can’t get enough Shaun of the Dead, you’ll dig this Shaun-themed photo shoot with Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and Edgar Wright. (Total Film)

Word is that zombie author Z.A. Recht (Plague of the Dead, Thunder and Ashes) has died. (A World on Fire)

Deadlines: News roundup 11/5/09

Posted by Cory Casciato On November - 5 - 2009

deadlines

A daily roundup of all the undead news that shambles into view… Bookmark the home page or add the RSS feed to your reader for your daily dose of walking dead. Got news tips? E-mail me at cory.casciato[AT]gmail.com.

There’s a new anthology series coming out called George A. Romero’s Deadtime Stories. It’s actually written and directed by Jeff Monahan but least one of them, “Dust,” looks to be zombie based. There’s a trailer embedded after the break. (Dread Central)

Catch up with the happenings at the Zombie Film Challenge. (The Sci-Fi Gene)

There’s a bunch of videos about various aspects of Left 4 Dead 2 over at the official Left 4 Dead blog. I’d embed them but they seem a little touchy as it is, so just go there if you’re interested. (Official L4D Blog)

Pre-sales for Left 4 Dead 2 are four times what the original’s were. That’s a lot of zombie killing. (CVG)

The final trailer for the on-rails, Wii zombie shooter Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles is out, and I embedded it for you after the break. The game hits November 17. (Horror Squad)

Writers might be interested in this zombie short-story writing contest.

In the “Barely News” news department, the logo for Resident Evil: Afterlife has been revealed. Yay? (Shock Till You Drop)

Read the rest of this entry »

Vampires Suck; or, Richard Corliss knows nothing about zombies

Posted by Cory Casciato On August - 10 - 2009

corlissSo, Time movie critic Richard Corliss, in a review of Park Chan-wook’s Thirst, decided to take the opportunity to expound on why vampires are better than zombies as a lead in to his review. Why he felt the need to defame the good zombie name, I am not sure, but what he ended up proving is a) he knows basically nothing about zombies, b) he has little idea what is actually scary in a movie and c) zombies are infinitely better than vampires, by the very criteria he has selected.

Corliss starts out with this tepid intro: “You’ve heard the propaganda: Zombies Are the New Vampires. Once relegated to back-list B movies like I Walked With a Zombie and Night of the Living Dead, those slow-moving, post-mortem drudges of West African mythic origin are now the hot horror creature.”

Okay, Corliss. I Walked with a Zombie may have been a B-picture, but it’s since been validated as something of a classic. And Night of the Living Dead? Not only was it not a B-movie (it was an early indie, to be accurate, created entirely outside of Hollywood) you’re also talking about what is almost universally recognized as the second most important and influential horror movie ever (second only to Psycho). Not an auspicious start to your argument.

From there, he offers what he seems to believe is an argument for the vampire’s primacy, but ends up being merely a list of reasons that vampires, well … suck. Here’s the relevant material:

Zombies are what we feel like at our worst: slogging through a winter workday, standing in a long line at airport security, waking up with a hangover. Vampires speak to the romantic in us, to our need for human contact, teeth to neck. They embody everything erotic about the predatory impulse. Vampires glide through the night and, instead of breaking down your door like an angry zombie mob, they glide into your bedroom for a late-night tryst. They don’t rip a victim’s limbs off; they leave two decorous little puncture marks on the neck or breast. But once they get into your system, you’re theirs forever — unlike a zombie, whom you can escape just by walking briskly in the opposite direction. Vampires have savoir-faire and star quality; a vampire is Johnny Depp, a zombie John C. Reilly. And they’re always impeccably dressed. What do zombies wear? Rags! Not to sound elitist, but zombies are just rabble. Vampires always have been, always will be, the aristocrats of monsters.

See, that’s exactly why vampires, as typically portrayed, aren’t fucking scary. That’s not a nightmare, that’s a thirteen-year-old girl’s wet dream. Sexuality as reduced to “decorous little puncture marks on the neck or breast.” That’s not horror. That’s the kind of sanitized bullshit that makes garbage like Twilight so popular. It’s that kind of “ooh, sexy” approach that has stripped the vampire of its power to scare and turned it into a BDSM-lite fetish symbol for the pubescent set.

His other points are equally ridiculous. If you think you can escape a zombie mob by “walking briskly in the opposite direction” you not only haven’t seen a zombie movie in about ten years, but you didn’t pay a lot of attention to the ones you did watch (p.s. hope you have a better plan than that for when the inevitable zombie apocalypse occurs, Corliss. Maybe your vampire buddies can help you out…). And what does he offer as an example of the embodiment of vampire? Johnny fucking Depp? So not scary, unless you suffer severe gay panic when you see an exceptionally pretty man. On the other hand, the image he chooses as a zombie representative, viewed in the proper context is actually pretty horrific. Picture a dead-eyed, hungry looking John C. Reilly, dressed in rags, missing a limb and dripping blood and viscera from his mouth — now that’s a fucking nightmare.

Read the whole article: Thirst: Why Vampires Beat Zombies”

Shipwrecked with a zombie: The Zombie Wilson Diaries

Posted by Cory Casciato On July - 24 - 2009

zombiewilsonbanner
Got an e-mail today informing me about an intriguing new site/twist on the zombie mythos. It’s called The Zombie Wilson Diaries, by Tim Long, and it is about a man shipwrecked on a deserted island … with a zombie. A once-hot female zombie, no less. The story is told, as the title suggests, diary-style (which is clearly the best format for a man-alone/desert-island tale) and it looks promising. I haven’t had a chance to read the entire thing yet, but what I have read is well written with some nice horror and comedic elements. When I have a chance I’ll read the entirety of it, but for now I wanted to put it out there so all of you hungering for something new and zombiesque could enjoy it.

Visit The Zombie Wilson Diaries.

Deadlines: News roundup 7/14/09

Posted by Cory Casciato On July - 14 - 2009

deadlines

A daily roundup of all the undead news that shambles into view… Bookmark the home page or add the feed to your RSS reader for your daily dose of walking dead. Got news tips? E-mail me at cory.casciato[AT]gmail.com.

Comics will get a new zombie heroine in Gwen Dylan, girl zombie detective, when I, Zombie comes out from Vertigo/DC sometime next year. It’s set in a world full of classic horror tropes (vampires, werewolves, etc.), with the inevitable twist. Can’t wait that long for info? There’s a panel at San Diego Comic COn that should give you some more data. (Dread Central)

John Carpenter gets collected, as The Thing, Prince of Darkness, They Live and Village Of The Damned get bundled for the $20 Master of Fear collection. That’s a lot of Carpenter, including the oddball zombie flick Prince of Darkness, for $20! (DVD Active)

Stephen King’s tech-zombie book Cell looks to become a TV miniseries. (Dread Central)

Another zombie comedy is coming in The Gatekeeper, a film about three friends defending their town from a zombie outbreak. Directed by the second-unit director of the Day of the Dead remake, it’s off to a fine start… (Fangoria)

Trade mag Publishers Weekly weighs in on the surge in zombie popularity. My take: finally the world realized that zombies are fucking awesome. How much more of an explanation do you need? (Publishers Weekly)

And finally, you may have noticed posting have been thin on the ground here at the ol’ Inevitable Zombie Apocalypse. If you care why, click that “more” link and read all about it…

Read the rest of this entry »

Brilliant: Monster Island

Posted by Cory Casciato On May - 28 - 2009

monsterislandZombies, as a rule, are more at home in film and video games than in literature. There’s no grand literary tradition stemming back hundreds of years, or even decades for that matter, as there is with vampires. The truth is, the vast majority of zombie novels are utter shit. Even among the good stuff, there’s no single great work, apart from very recent works from Max Brooks arguably, to point to as sterling examples of the form. Well, folks, in a decade or two that will change as David Wellington’s Monster Island becomes recognized for the masterpiece that it is.

Monster Island‘s story revolves around two characters, Dekalb and Gary. Dekalb is a former UN weapons inspector leading a mission to retrieve a stash of priceless drugs for a Somali warlord in exchange for a place for himself and his daughter in the new world order. Gary is a rather unusual zombie – a zombie who can still think, thanks to a clever plan devised while he was still alive. The paths of these two intersect fairly early on, with devastating consequences for Gary, then split, taking a number of fascinating individual twists and turns before meeting again for a satisfying climax. The surprises on each character’s path are so integral to the story and so inherently satisfying it would be a travesty to spoil any of them, but suffice it to say that both must face dire circumstances in pursuit of what they desire, circumstances that change them and their initial goals.

Both characters are exquisitely wrought and developed throughout the story. Wellington manages to make them both sympathetic, even as they do terrible things. Making a zombie sympathetic to any degree isn’t an easy task, but Wellington isn’t your average hack horror writer. An excellent supporting cast surrounds these two characters on both sides, alive and dead. Not surprisingly, since most of Gary’s companions are mindless dead, the bulk of secondary characters that get attention interact with Dekalb, from the teenage soldiers accompanying him in his mission to the survivors they meet in New York City.

The cause of the zombie plague is not revealed, but it appears to be supernatural for a number of reasons (again, revealing those reasons would spoil some excellent surprises). The average zombie is very similar to the zombies of George A. Romero’s Dead series – slow, nearly mindless (due to brain damage from asphyxiation as the person dies but before the zombie rises, it is explained) and always hungry. These zombies eat anything alive though – not just people, but animals, plants, even grass. And when they do, it fills them with vitality in undeath, healing wounds and giving them strength to go on. If they don’t eat, they slowly wither away and rot like normal dead things (well, normal dead things don’t walk, but you know…).

This is one of the finest zombie stories ever told, in any medium. It’s written in a spare, deft style that manages to pack maximum impact into minimal verbiage. There’s rarely a single word wasted throughout the story, from taut action sequences to tender, human moments to mind-blowing metaphysical revelations. Wellington’s mythology is well-developed, fully compatible with the popular view of the zombie and yet strikingly original in the realm of zombie fiction – I can’t wait to see how it develops in the two sequels. His characters are believable, his settings are real and his prose is gorgeous. This is an essential book for zombie fans – don’t pass it up.

You can read it online at the Monster Island website or purchase it from fine booksellers everywhere.

Edited 7/30/2012 to fix minor typographical error and awkward sentence construction.

Deadlines: News roundup 5/22/09

Posted by Cory Casciato On May - 22 - 2009

deadlines

A daily roundup of all the undead news that shambles into view… Got news tips? E-mail me at cory.casciato[AT]gmail.com.

News today? How about none, basically? Not that that’s why I haven’t posted. I was tied up with a paying job all day and didn’t have time, but as it turns out, it turned out to be pretty much a moot point, because there’s no real news to report! But because I love you (and zombies) I dug up a few nuggets…

Remember yesterday, when I gave you the early word on Colin, the under-$100 budgeted zombie flick from the zombie’s point of view? Well, CNN reads the blog apparently (or, just maybe they have their own source … I guess it’s possible) because they have a story about it today. Still no word about distribution or eventual release date. (CNN)

And … that’s it. But, here’s a link to a cool, on-going series of short-short stories set in a zombie-infested world. It’s written in a collaborative fashion (each story has one author, but they are clearly set in the same world, telling different parts of the story). It’s called Wrath of the Damned and I heartily recommend it.

Have a great weekend, and please let me know what I should watch for my movie marathon!

Deadlines: News roundup 5/14/09

Posted by Cory Casciato On May - 14 - 2009

deadlines

A daily roundup of all the undead news that shambles into view… Got news tips? E-mail me at cory.casciato[AT]gmail.com.

Talky zombie thriller Pontypool is coming to DVD July 21. No word on special features but the cover art has been revealed. (Bloody Disgusting)

Portland, Oregon residents should get out of the house and go enjoy the wonder of Zompire: The Undead Film Festival this weekend. Cemetery Man, Day of the Dead and other great films are on the bill and you can get the full lineup at the festival web site. (Dread Central & everyone I know in Portland — you know who you are!)

If you didn’t already know, the Zombie Reporting Center sent out a helpful reminder that Walking Dead Compendium One is out and available for purchase. Robert Kirkman’s ongoing graphic novel of life after the zombie apocalypse is fantastic, and this collects the first 48 issues into a massive 1,088 page volume. (Zombie Reporting Center)

Los Angeles goes zombie mad as alt-weekly paper LA Weekly gives us a giant cover story on the zombie zeitgeist, a brief history of the zombie in film, a slide show from the Fangoria Weekend of Horrors con and a memoir of one man’s experience with zombies. Wow, zombie blowout! (LA Weekly)

Finally, on a personal note, my post earlier about the June Zombie Movie Marathon was the 100th post for the blog! Not bad for just over three months, eh? Looking forward to hundreds more with you fine people.

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