Graphic Novel Review: “Deadworld Classic Vol. 1″

Deadworld is one of the longest running independent comics (having originally debuted in 1987) and it just so happens to be the story of survivors trying to live in the world after a zombie apocalypse. Deadworld Classic Vol. 1 depicts the first-eight issues of the series (in addition to several extra stories and shorts) and most importantly focuses on the contributions of artist Vince Locke whose name is synonymous with the series as one of its original creators (along with Stuart Kerr and Ralph Griffith).

Because zombies have become so popular in film, fiction, and comic books it’s no wonder that the original zombie epic finally sees the light of day once again (although there are currently more than 65 issues in the series’ various titles). IDW Publishing is reprinting all the original material for old and new fans alike (a Deadworld Omnibus series is concurrently being published also through IDW Publishing).

The thing that sets this zombie series apart from others of the day (that originally followed the formula established by George A. Romero’s 1968 Night of the Living Dead film) is the fact that there are smart zombies that have the capacity to speak in this series (lead by a character called King Zombie) and other creatures such as the four armed creature The Graken which resemble the xenomorphs in the Alien films, among others. There is a lot of the Resident Evil video games that can be found in here as well as the more recent Robert Kurtzman series The Walking Dead (and the television series).

Fans of the zombie genre will love the fact that there are no guarantees with any of the characters in the series as major characters are killed off while others are introduced. There are few series that have established a presence in the genre like this series has.

Locke is also a major contributor to this collection as well as he gives a brief intro to each of the issues detailing the different techniques and materials that went into the production and art of each issue. As the series progresses we learn that Locke’s artwork does the same which creates a wonderful look at Locke’s contribution to the series and progression as a professional comic book artist. IDW Publishing did a great job re-collecting the series and its presentation of the series and it adds several never before seen shorts and additions including the very first short with characters from the series (which had never been published before). These alone are great reasons for fans to pick up the book. This is one of the classic zombie epics and it’s great that new fans will be able to enjoy the epic.

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