Comic Book Review – Marvel Zombies 5 #1 (2010)

Marvel Zombies 5 #1 (of 5) 

Writer – Fred Van Lente 

Artist – Kano 

When a green comet passes by Earth 483, a universe where it’s still the Old West, the townsfolk are in for a rude awakening when the dead begin to rise from their graves. Only a hero dubbed Hurricane and his daughter can stop the shambling horde from causing death and destruction to the Territory. 

Welcome to Marvel Zombies 5

Marvel Zombies was a surprise hit for Marvel Comics back in the early 2000s that ended up spawning a franchise. Much like horror movies and their sequels, some entries were hit or miss. Once Fred Van Lente was given a chance at a MZ miniseries, he injected some life back into the title (pun intended) with his patented mix of comedy and horror. 

Machine Man and his mystery partner are traveling the Marvel Alterniverse to find a cure for the zombie plague on their world. They come across the debris of the comet and its impact near a cemetery. They discover that due to radiation given off by the celestial body, the undead become a breed of zombie called “Ghouls” also known as a “Romero”, which cause those to die to get back up immediately. This is a nice nod to George Romero, who wrote and directed Night of the Living Dead. The next issue teases a zombie nicknamed “Boyle”, which means Machine Man and company will face off against very fast and rageful zombies. That Earth was conquered by Martians, so there is a double dose of danger for the intrepid heroes. 

If I can recall correctly, this might be the first time we see a zombie/western mashup in pop culture. There are a few familiar Marvel Wild West heroes that become part of the undead and if you have a hard time putting names with faces, don’t worry, Hurricane helps you figure out who they are.  

After reading the first issue, I have to say that the premise of traveling the multiverse to find a cure to either end the zombie plague outright or help return the populace back to normal was a great idea for the plot and this entry in the franchise. I’m interested in seeing who will join Machine Man and his partner on their journey. I’m also curious about who will survive until the very end and if their task is successful or not. The five-issue miniseries is available on Hoopla if you would like to read it. After finishing this graphic novel collection, I just might go back and reread Marvel Zombies from the beginning to see how the original and its sequels hold up almost twenty years later. 

Dear readers, I have two questions for you – What was your favorite Marvel Zombies miniseries?  And What is your favorite zombie movie?