Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Empire of the Dead – Act 2 – review

Author: George A Romero

Illustrator: Dalibor Talajić

First published: 2015 (trade paperback)

Contains spoilers

The blurb: Zombies vs. Humans vs. Vampires

Welcome back to a very different New York City, still standing – barely – years after a world-changing undead plague. Zombies are used for sport in the arena, and vampires secretly rule the city! But now outside forces are knocking on Manhattan’s walls, and death rains down from above!

As Mayor Chandrake makes deadly power plays, can Dixie Peach control the rogue militia that’s rolling in from the South? What are Paul Barnum and Penny Jones secrets? What is the fate of street urchin Jo and undead cop Zavier? And what’s worse for the city’s remaining normal residents: the roaming flesh-eaters who seem to grow smarter every day, the ruling blood-suckers struggling to stay in power, or the militia bent on pillaging the city? It’s zombies vs. vampires vs. an invading army as the undead saga continues!

The review: Having enjoyed Act 1 of this marvel series, written by zombie-master George A Romero, I really anticipated reading book 2. All in all it was still brilliant but the pace, perhaps, slowed a tad as the various strands of machinations was explored.

Vampire Mayor Chandrake finds his position being assailed but is as intent on dominating Penny Jones as he is to holding on to his position. Barnum is concerned about their relationship – given his feelings for Jones – but to complicate matters we discover that Chandrake’s wife, Lilith, left Barnum for Chandrake.

The blurb tells us about the militia rolling in on New York but we also discover that, within the “safe” walls someone has been kidnapping and harvesting children. Jo is one of the orphan children but she has a protector in the form of the former cop and now zombie Zavier. Zavier is one of the zombies showing intelligence and this is the brilliance of the series. Romero has always had a hankering towards showing the dead evolving but in this he, through Zavier, does it in a way that we genuinely start to root for and care about the character.

The slower pace probably detracts a little but overall this is still a brilliant graphic novel. 7.5 out of 10.


Michelle Kellogg said...

I never read the first one. These sound interesting! thanks for sharing!

Taliesin_ttlg said...

no worries Michelle :)