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Marvel Zombies 3 #1

Posted: Tuesday, October 7, 2008
By: Paul Brian McCoy

Fred Van Lente
Kev Walker
Marvel Comics
Editor's Note: Marvel Zombies 3 #1 arrives in stores tomorrow, October 8.

This one's a no-brainer. Heh.

Honestly, it's like this comic was written for me personally. There's a guy who's based on Deathlok. It takes place in the Nexus of All Realities. Man Thing makes a brief appearance. One of its stars is Machine Man and another is Morbius, The Living Vampire. It introduces us to another secret government organization like S.H.I.E.L.D. and S.W.O.R.D.: A.R.M.O.R., the Alternate Reality Monitoring and Operational Response Agency. And there are bunches of zombies.

It's like I pitched this story.

And the story is this: Zombie Deadpool slips into the 616 MU through the swamp where Man Thing lives, which, as the genius Steve Gerber established years ago, is the Nexus of All Realities, where the boundaries between alternate realities are a little blurry. The Florida Initiative team, which has a leader named Siege who was created using the Deathlok technology, investigates and bad things begin to happen. Bad, bloody, gory things.

Enter A.R.M.O.R., where Morbius, The Living Vampire is working on a cure for the zombie plague and Machine Man is drafted for a mission to Zombie Earth. He's emotionally blackmailed by, er I mean, accompanied by Jocasta, making it a robot mission to fight zombies and capture "live human blood from the virus' native dimension to create the vaccine."

And away we go.

Of course that's not everything that happens, and there are a few surprises to go along with the zombie splatter. Actually, the big twist reveal at the end is what knocks this book down a half bullet for me as it's kind of nonsensical and without explanation. I'm just not buying it. I enjoy the irony of it, but just don't see how it could have happened.

The script, by Incredible Hercules co-writer Fred Van Lente, is, like his work on that title, briskly paced, humorous, and loaded with references that makes me think we read the same comics growing up. He's been able to take a concept that I thought was played out and made something interesting out of it. I had no interest in picking this book up with the new creative team and over saturation of the Marvel Zombies idea (especially after the disappointing Marvel Zombies vs. Army of Darkness and the tired conclusion to Marvel Zombies 2), until I heard the details of the story that I mentioned above.

Kev Walker's art is rough-hewn and hearkens back to Philips' work on the previous series, but lacks the detailed gore of those stories. Instead we get more loosely rendered violence that, while bloody, is a little short on the disgusting imagination that brought Philips' work to life. So to speak.

For the most part, this creative team does its job and squeezes out another interesting start for a Marvel Zombies mini-series. But I'm a little biased. Your mileage may vary, depending on your level of devotion to Seventies comics and cannibalistic, undead monsters. But I'm in baby! I'm in!






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