Sunday, June 5, 2022

The Walking Dead

Welp, I thought I had already posted this one here yeeeeears ago, but I guess I just got it confused with all the other countless THOIA archived stories with the words "walking dead" in the title! It's a real good'un too with joltin' John Forte artwork and a ghastly Gene Colan cover to electrify your brain at the gate! From the January 1954 issue of Menace #9.


Brian Barnes said...

"Hear that tramp, tramp, tramping out there in the rain-sweep night" is a great opening line for a horror band song!

I love the talking zombie, and I love the human level intelligence and he's even snarky: "Ladies first!" I feel sorry for the dog, though!

Both page 2 and 3 have fun four panel sequences. The zombie face in the crematory window is great, he really looks pissed and yeah, would you really imagine that would work? "You tricked me, let me out ... so I can eat you?" Yeah, no.

I wonder where the zombies eat people started?

Unknown said...

Amazing stuff!! Smashing first page, and that ending was truly out of left field. Don't believe I've ever seen a zombie swallow an entire owl, then chow down on rabbits, bats, and snakes. Zoinks!! One of those stories that help you to understand why the "Karens" of the 50s wanted horror comics banned and burned. If your mom found this issue of Menace lying around, she'd likely shit Twinkies just from seeing that striking Colan cover!!

Mr. Cavin said...

"Bony lips" I love it.

That first page is really wild. Dig that driving rainstorm that's going on under a nearly clear sky. That's the kind of night where anything can happen (and usually does)! The decision to leave much of the page black and white is really effective.

The internal logic of the story is pretty sly, too. Of course when a zombie crawls out of a grave late one night and spends a half and hour hunting around the bushes for bats and snakes, well, he doesn't make it far. When he does finally run across a person it'd be somebody who works right there in the cemetery, someone burning the ole midnight oil, as it were.

And I don't for one minute think it's a coincidence that man's job includes his own wife, not under this storm-lashed waxing gibbous moon. I imagine our star-crossed zombie's just run into yet another Atlas horror tale playing-out offstage. Maybe it was even the zombie's job to avenge this woman, his married lover, from beyond the grave--but he just woke up hungry, and forgot. said...

This is interesting. I previously thought George Romero invented the flesh eating zombie. Usually they were mindless workers or menaces, but this guy is a real flesh eater.
I'll make up a bogus theory right now that the zombie came about when Americans became polarized so that each side looked at the other side as mindless zombies that wanted to consume them.
Is this the only example of a flesh eating zombie before the Night of the Living Dead?
the eloquent speech and the sharp teeth are different from our current zombies but the rest is pretty well the zombie we now have.
John Forte did a solid job and always did; sometimes even better.
My favourite work of his was with Matt Fox. That was a great pairing.
Everyone likes Gene Colan a lot but I always see incredible stiffness and the photographic reference in his illustrations.
It never looks like he's internally visualized the work.... sorry.

Todd said...

Hey, points for honesty. This is why all homes should come with a crematory chamber.

Unknown said...

A whole lotta fun in this one. Vampire/zombie? A brand new species? Thank you Karswell.