Zombie B.C. Review – An Original Tale In an Over-saturated Genre

When the world has had enough of something it typically chews it up, regurgitates it and then, optionally, defecates on its battered, lifeless corpse. Such is the fate of the ubiquitous and overused zombie genre. Uninspiring as it is, what would you say to a team of relatively unknown artists taking a stab at the genre? Besides surefire career suicide, there’s seemingly nothing left in the genre to make zombies interesting again, right? Enter Zombie B.C., the overly violent, silent tale of a zombie outbreak in a bygone age.

A project 10 years in the making, Zombie B.C. is the creation of Steve Vold and his colleague Steven Williams. Having gone through the mental anguish that is a failed Kickstarter, reaching only $1,591 out of the required $5,500 goal, Vold still managed to print 250 physical issues. Along with digital copies, Zombie B.C. is available across multiple platforms yet remains supremely niche. That’s to be expected though, especially when exasperated sighs and the rolling of eyes is your greatest enemy. Still, Zombie B.C. manages to nullify the undead drawl with an interesting premise and fantastic artwork.

Upon receiving my copy of the comic, immediately I was taken aback by the excellent artwork. Expecting nothing more than the standard gunmetal greys and apocalyptic browns, each image is depicted in grisly, stylized effort and it comes across beautifully. If there’s anything you can take away from Zombie B.C., give Steven Williams the award for best undead neanderthal depiction ever.zombiebcslide

For those who dig deeper, Zombie B.C. is 18 pages of interesting encounters with substantial gore and, more importantly, fantastic story-telling. In case you’re unaware, deep in the B.C. era humans didn’t communicate the way we do in contemporary society. Vold gets this point across quickly and effectively by instituting a narrator to help the reader along. By gaining the thoughts of the people in each slide, Zombie B.C. reads well and evades picture-book status. Even better, you may even get to see zombies attempt to attack a woolly mammoth. Just sayin’.

It may not seem like much, but the narrator alone changes how a zombie adventure works. Quarrels, banter, and gossip simply don’t exist and survival takes on a primary role. Granted, the era has more to do with it than anything, but nonetheless, having a random zombie outbreak in the B.C. era is decidedly seminal.

The biggest problem I had with Zombie B.C. was the final pages of the comic. Without giving too much away, the story fast-forwards to modern day in a crazy attempt to explain how the zombie outbreak could transfer to the modern day. Zombie B.C.‘s appeal resides in the B.C. era and its silent, ruthless protagonists. If future issues shift toward the present day, I fear all originality and excitement surrounding Vold’s undead child will disintegrate immediately.

Zombie B.C. is a great, original tale for a genre that’s so derivative I can’t even make a joke about how boring and overused it’s become. Caveman zombie hunters rescuing jungle babes while spearing Mr. Undeadliness while riding a jaguar holds infinite more appeal than any modern day zombie tales ever could. It’s short, but to the point and Vold should be proud he’s managed to carve out a fitting story in a place no one thought could exist. For $3, supporting a B.C. undead-laden tale is a no-brainer.

Copies of Zombie B.C. can be found here.