*** Out of 5
Release Date- January 22nd, 2014
Writer- George A. Romero
When it comes to the zombie film legendary filmmaker George A. Romero reinvented the sub-genre with the classic Night of the Living Dead and than did it again with Dawn of the Dead. The Dead series continued with Day of the Dead, which at the time of its release in 1985 drew more subpar reviews, but over the years its gained in popularity. After that the series gets very mixed reviews, but more or less I still liked them, but the last 3 aren’t as strong as the first 3. Now after Survival of the Dead rather than another film the series continues in comic form with Empire of the Dead.
5-years after the Dead came back New York is now overrun by zombies
I was quite excited about the release and based off issue 1 in my opinion there’s a lot of room for improvement. The Walking Dead it isn’t. The thing I love most about Romero’s Dead films and actually his films in general is he often writes very interesting characters with a lot of depth and when I’ve written reviews for his films I often say he’s a great director, but an equally great screenwriter. However the characters in Empire of the Dead in issue 1 I found kind of bland now of course its only 1 issue. Even in the Walking Dead outside of a couple of characters it took me a while to fully connect with them. As the series went on the more attached I got to the characters so perhaps being a different medium than film it’ll take a little longer. But based off issue 1 of Empire of the Dead I just didn’t find the characters interesting.
One point of interest for fans will be is this issue does tie into Night of the Living Dead. If you remember in the film towards the end Barbara gets pulled out of the house and that’s the last we see of her. In Empire of the Dead we find out her actual fate as the main character in Empire of the Dead is the sister of Johnny and Barbara.
Through the Dead film series we’ve seen the zombies evolve and honestly by Land of the Dead they were a little too evolved for me. Here in Empire of the Dead we continue that as zombies even retain some memories and thoughts.
And there is also a new twist, which isn’t a spoiler since it was part of the press release, but zombies aren’t the only undead out there.
Overall I have to admit I wasn’t overly impressed with issue 1 of Empire of the Dead. It was a decent read, but also for me at least a little forgettable, but again its only the first issue and there is potential for something at least I hope.