Monday, July 5, 2010

Road to Iran; An Irate Reader's Review of "Zombies of Mass Destruction"

Zombies of Mass Destruction (or ZMD as its creators like to call it) is a mishmash of good ideas poorly executed, and mind-numbingly stupid ideas executed with all the aplomb of a bored four year old. This was written by Kevin Grevioux (blarg!) and drawn by Geraldo Borges & Dave Youkovich (who tried to save this series from itself).

The first issue starts with the only great idea the creators seem to have come up with. An American freighter flies overhead and drops metallic tubes over an Iranian nuclear bomb testing facility; zombies burst forth from the tubes and in a matter of hours overrun the entire complex. Fourteen hours after the tubes first struck the Iranian earth the zombie virus inside of them burns away, killing all chance of the infection spreading and causing a World War Z like global apocalypse. One zombie, however, does not burn and wonders off into the desert.

Now, five pages in, all the crap gets thrown at the poor reader. We are introduced to a shell-shocked almost parody of Captain America. This guy lacks the suit and shield, but in personality (when he has one) and looks he matches up perfectly with Steve Rogers. Apparently Not-Cap married a girl during the first Gulf War and then ditched her when she didn't move to America--or something: the creators are never quite clear what when on between them. For all the difference it makes we can assume that her Mother in Law tried to kill Not-Cap.

We are also introduced to a group of shadowy Republicans who are not sorry that zombies were unleashed on the Iranian site. Because of this, they are shown as the face of uncaring evil--all that is wrong with the American government.

But what did the Shadow Republicans do that was really wrong? Did they use a technology that was maybe best left unused? Yes. But by wiping that Iranian testing facility off the face of the Earth, lives were saved. Iran was then unable to produce the bombs necessary to blast Israel (something the current Iranian leader is itching to do); The Iranians are unable to bomb any other Arab country that fails to fall under their hand. Thus, by unleashing a small scale zombie outbreak on the nuclear facility countless lives were saved from an atomic holocaust.

Not-Cap complains about the Shadow Republicans then agrees to go and kill the escaped zombie. The escaped zombie's been doing what zombies do and eating people, converting them into his own undead army.

Not-Cap spends four pages introducing his team to the reader; but since the reader is given no reason to care about these morons they don't stick in the readers head and bleed together. Some of them right quick, making their introduction all the more pointless. Not-Cap gets bit, but since they have zombie-antidote it doesn't matter.

Not-Cap's commando team gets shot down by zombies with RPGs. The team is attacked by mutant scorpions, then saved by a team of Christian Iranian commandos (???).

From this point, the commandos are kidnapped by zombies and taken to Zombie Village where the Zombie King and Zombie Queen rule over the Temple of Dagon (this last bit was advertised in the blurb, but there is no appearance of any Lovecraftian reference). The Zombie King turns out to be Not-Cap's old Commanding Officer and wants to eat every human in the world. The Zombie Queen is, for even less of a logical reason, the ex-wife that Not-Cap abandoned in the Iranian deserts. She mocks him, and the commandos are thrown into a holding cell.

In the cell, two commandos try to set up a nuclear bomb and wipe out Zombie Village, but all the other commandos beat them up so they don't die. Thus, we can further determine that Not-Cap is a coward. Since this comic series makes no sense, Not-Cap's idiotic actions are presented as heroism.

Through a series of events that make no sense--including the leader of the Christian Iranian Commandos past as an expert on Iranian Temple Design (???)--the commandos escape. Not-Cap rescues his (for some reason still living) daughter and runs into the desert. The Shadow Republicans pull one final bit of "villainy" and carpet bomb Zombie Village to dust. I have no idea why the series wants me to feel sorry for the zombie army that wants to EAT US ALL.

I'm guessing that in this series, the zombies are supposed to be a philosophical stand-in for violent Islam. This is troubling because the message passed on to the reader is: They want to kill you; letting them kill you is the morally right thing to do. What a load of madness. The only characters in this series who acted logically again the undead were the Shadow Republicans with their policy of shutting down any threat with the most logically fitting action.

I normally love the comic books put out by Red 5 Comics (like the fantastic Atomic Robo) but this miniseries is the trash that makes me wary of independent comic publishers.

Final Grade: D-

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