Jun 30

HBO’s Game of Thrones is an epic fantasy based on George R. R. Martin‘s A Song of Ice and Fire books. After watching and loving the first few episodes of the TV series, I started reading the books. I only needed to read the prologue of the first book to make an awesome realization: This is a story about zombies.

Now, it’s not just about zombies. It’s also about war and dragons and sorcery and people. But I found the zombie part really compelling. In the prologue of the first book, A Game of Thrones, we are introduced to a creepy race of beings called the Others, which the characters speak of but don’t believe to exist. Then they meet one. It is gaunt and pale, with eyes that are blue and glowing. That is all well and creepy, but then we get to the part that caught my attention: After the Others kill a man, he comes back to life as one of them, also pale, gaunt, and with glowing blue eyes. Could the Others be zombies?

Game of Thrones - The Others

Game of Thrones - The Others


In truth, they’re not the typical zombie. It seems that these ones are capable of sword-fighting and talking, it’s unclear whether they eat brains, and of course there are the demonic blue eyes. But they’re definitely the living dead – and I expect that they’ll be coming in hordes.

The first season of Game of Thrones is a pretty faithful adaptation of the first book, and I’ve only just begun to read the second. So, if you haven’t seen the series, some of what I’m about to say might be spoilers, but not much. I’ll mostly be talking about the world Martin created, not the actual plot. You’ve been warned.

Game of Thrones - The Wall

Game of Thrones - The Wall


In this world, there is a wall cutting off the northern part of the continent, which is so ancient that no one knows quite who built it, or how or why. It’s almost 700 feet high and is simply called the Wall. The Others are a legend south of the Wall, spoken of mostly in jokes and children’s stories. But north of the Wall, we’ve seen that they’re real.

So, this situation seems rife for an epic zombie battle: We have an ancient wall that was likely built to keep the Others from infecting those in the south of the continent. We have the unexpected emergence of the Others in the north, though they are generally believed to be creatures of fairy tales. And we have them creating new Others – a swarm that must travel south to feed. I can’t wait to see what happens. I’m expecting some zombie mayhem.

Game of Thrones is a great series, regardless – but I’m happy to find a little living-dead action in there. Because everything is better with zombies, right?

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Sep 15

night of the living trekkies

Quirk Books is tugging at our heartstrings again with its release of Night of the Living Trekkies, where a zombie apocalypse breaks out a Star Trek convention. This apparently results in a hilarious union between Starfleet, Borg, Klingons, and fans against their bloodthirsty, earthbound undead enemies.

The hilarious book trailer is begging for feature length B-movie treatment. Clearly a lot of redshirts are going down.

The book came out in July. We’ll take a look and hope to review this one soon.

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Jul 02

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls by Steve HockensmithI should have posted a review of the Pride and Prejudice and Zombies prequel, Dawn of the Dreadfuls months ago. It was a wholly enjoyable book and I started reading it when it was released in March. For the delay, I cite personal reasons, although I think most Pride and Prejudice fans would agree. The problem: There is no Mr. Darcy.

Of course there isn’t. This is a prequel set before the characters are introduced to Mr. Favorite Literary Crush. But when I figured out he wasn’t in this book, I put it down and cried for a few months. Then took a deep breath, brought the book to the beach and loved it.

Of course I loved it. It’s funny zombie fiction. And it’s set in Regency England, where zombies aren’t just deadly, they’re an insult to good manners. The tight-lipped repulsion just leaps off the page.

Although it carries the same branding, P&P&Z: Dawn of the Dreadfuls is a very different sort of book from P&P&Z. Rather than a literary mash-up of Seth Grahame-Smith‘s zombies and Jane Austen‘s prose, the book is original fiction by Steve Hockensmith. I had never read his other books and, although it appears that he’s a newcomer to zombie-fic, his humorous historical fiction has received much praise. Hockensmith’s writing is accessible and engaging, bringing a lightness to the P&P&Z franchise that should make it attractive to those turned off by Jane Austen’s profuse punctuation and pontification.

Dawn of the Dreadfuls begins at a funeral, when the body rudely awakens and reminds Hertfordshire of the dormant zombie plague it ought not to mention. As the undead continue to stumble from their graves, Mr. Bennet is forced to train his five daughters to be ninja warriors like himself — with the help of the handsome, strapping Master Hawksworth. Despite the dearth of Mr. Darcy, Hockensmith creates plenty of male characters to match up with Austen’s swarm of females, each of them flawed in ways that thankfully allow the ladies to kick lots of zombie butt.

Unlike in P&P&Z, the zombies are not an after-thought — or perhaps a never-thought on the part of co-author Austen (a point that I suppose is debatable). The zombies in Dawn of the Dreadfuls are plentiful and, as in most zombie books, the horde size increases with the page number. The black and white engravings also help to bump up the zombie-quotient, although I would rate the gore in this book as slightly less than in P&P&Z.

Overall, P&P&Z: Dawn of the Dreadfuls is a fresh, fun zombie book: a historical rom-zom-com with ninjas too. I give it 4.5 brains out of 5.

4.5 out of 5 brains

Related Posts:
P&P&Z: Dawn of the Dreadfuls Book Trailer & Author Interview
Pride & Prejudice & Zombies Was Pretty Good

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Jun 17

Zombie Adolf Hitler

Zombie FUBAR is a forthcoming comic anthology of World War II zombie stories expected in Fall 2010. Considering the awesome World War II zombie art already featured on the website, this is going to be a spectacular read.

just another old fashioned zombie love song - FUBAR

Continue reading »

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Mar 30

Every year The Washington Post‘s style section hosts a diorama competition. The primary rule: All characters must be Peeps. Pop culture and puns are strongly encouraged.

One of the semifinalists this year: “Peeps and Prejudice and Zombies” (no. 18) — awesome!

No zombies were found in this year’s winner. However, I might be willing to consider the main character in semifinalist “A Peep into Dr. Frankenstein’s Lab: Master It Lives!” (no. 27) undead.

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Mar 29

The book trailer for the P&P&Z prequel, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls came out recently and it’s all kinds of awesome. I personally hadn’t decided whether or not to check out the book — this just might just have won me over.

EW.com has a great interview with Dawn of the Dreadfuls author Steve Hockensmith, who discusses the mixed critical reaction to the first Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith):

You see the lovahs and you see the hatahs. And yeah, there were definitely some haters out there, and I’m sure they’re still there. It’s something that I can totally understand, it’s not something I look askance at, at all. Somebody having a cynical reaction when they find out that something that really means a lot to them, their beloved ex, is about to be lovingly satirized. I can understand how people can be a little defensive about things that they feel are near and dear to their hearts, but I would say, having thrown all that out there, that I think a lot of those people were actually won over when they read Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. Not all of them. I would hope, actually, that some of the folks that weren’t won over, would actually respond better to my book, because it isn’t a mash-up. [From EW.com]

Hockensmith makes an excellent point: Most of the hatas were not fans of Jane Austen, and therefore hated the prose. Or, they were huge Austen fans, and hated zombies. If someone isn’t open to both aspects of the mash-up, it’s lost. Dawn of the Dreadfuls is a new thing entirely: Historical zombie fiction. Oh yes.

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Dec 16

Needless to say, we’re totally psyched that Natalie Portman will produce and star in the upcoming Pride and Prejudice and Zombies film.

Here’s a quick Six-Degrees to Jane Austen: Natalie Portman played Queen Amidala in Star Wars, Episode I, in which Kiera Knightly played Sabe, who dressed as the queen. Kiera Knighly also played Elizabeth Bennet (the lead character) in the 2005 movie version of Pride and Prejudice. Not to mention, Natalie Portman totally kicks ass. Perfect casting, right?

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Dec 01

Update, 12/3/09, 12:50PM: Our suspicions that this report was a little shady are confirmed. Author Seth Grahame-Smith confirms that the rumor is false and the adaptation of P&P&Z is to be a feature film. Either way, we are still hoping for some parody of the BBC miniseries — possibly the infamous lake scene? [The original post follows.]

According to reports based on the Pride and Prejudice and Zombies Twitter feed, the zombie-romance-classic mashup will be adapted into a 6-part miniseries. As P&P&Z fans, we can’t wait to see this Regency-ninja-zombie thing done right!

The miniseries will evidently be produced by Deadline Productions, which seems relatively legit. We are, however, calling the report unconfirmed, since we’re unsure of the Twitter page‘s authenticity. But IMDB and P&P&Z author Seth Grahame-Smith have mentioned a P&P&Z adaptation, and the Twitter page does have some pretty great concept art (as seen on the left of this post) — so, we’re going to go ahead and celebrate.

Anyone who is a fan of P+P-Z (i.e., the original Pride and Prejudice) knows that the most beloved adaptation is the 6-part 1995 Pride and Prejudice BBC miniseries starring Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle.

This begs the question of whether the miniseries will be produced as a parody of the much-loved BBC miniseries. We say, bring on the critical disdain!

Related: Check out our review of P&P&Z and our other P&P&Z-related posts.

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Jun 11

If you dug the awesome art in Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, you’ll be raving about the full color prints in the Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, Deluxe Edition, coming this October.

The deluxe edition will be hardcover, with 15 color prints of oil paintings commissioned for the book. Not only that, but it will have 30% MORE ZOMBIES, with new zombie mayhem added by author Seth Grahame-Smith.

As a preview of what’s coming, Irreference has released two prints, which you can print and use as you please.

We’re preordering now. Expect Regency England-themed zombie Halloween costumes.

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May 01

free comic book dayTomorrow is Free Comic Book Day, that special day of the year when you can just walk into a comic book store and walk out with free comics. Legally, that is.

There are some fantastic-looking comics among this year’s free offerings, such as Attack Of The Alterna-Zombies!, which features Jesus Hates Zombies. FEARNet has a preview of several pages of Jesus Hates Zombies — here’s a nice snippet with Jesus, Abraham Lincoln and a zombie horde:

We can’t wait to get our hands on some of these on Saturday — thanks Free Comic Book Day crew!

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