"First off, I must apologize
to Brian John Mitchell and his three cover artists. Zombie Kisses
is presented in a unique form. So unique in fact that the three issues
ended up read and tucked away with my special things before I quite
knew that I hadn't done up a review. Each issue can fit in the palm
of your hand. I love it! I've been carrying them around all
day just because I like the way that they feel. Well, that and to
remind myself to write the review. Remember " Night of the Living Dead"
& it's many sequels? Well, Zombie Kisses is the story
of, what I assume to be our world after a zombie virus has broken down
our society and turned the dead into animated nightmares. Issue #1
with it's eerily ambiguous cover sets up the story of two brothers
who've lost all the family they held dear. It describes for you their
current living situation and their necessary steps for survival.
The last page climaxes with a cliffhanger that leaves you wanting more.
Yet I was a bit afraid of what would come next. Zombie Kisses
2 strikes you first with it's lonely cover art, portraiture of a soul
afraid to go on. The portrait then continue's with it's close look
of what the one brother feels and his loss of self. The third issue
takes a look into the head of the other brother as he tries to organize
survivors for carrying on. You, the reader can not be sure of his
ultimate fate though he seems convinced that he will not last long.
The accompanying art is macabre. This series is a whole lot of fun.
The powers that be just have to do up a film adaptation. My only
criticism is that at times the story and cover art seemed like something
dreamed up by my nephew when he was thirteen. Not necessarily being
a bad thing. It conveys a feeling of doomsday prophecy. You want
to know how much I like Zombie Kisses? I read it three times.
How many times will you read it?"
~ Buzz Reviews
"3 3/4 inchx 2 1/4 inch
No, that's not a misprint - these little devils aren't just small enough to fit in your pocket. One can easily disappear without a trace into the palm of an average adult reader's hand!
It seems that Brian John Mitchell, like many a horror film fan, was fascinated by George Romero's Zombie Trilogy (beginning so famously with Night of the Living Dead). He felt compelled to make his own zombie fiction - set in those films' milieu but featuring characters of his own creation.
The results so far are these three minis - the episodic, serialized story of two brothers confronting gruesome death & perhaps equally gruesome survival amid the ruins of our familiar world.
The brothers have joined a paramilitary militia type outfitas the story opens. They're fighting a losing battle against both zombies & lawless human marauders. Some of the latter capture, the nuse chained & mutilated zombies as a grotesque sort of attack dog - an idea Mitchell puts to effectively warped uses for his story telling purposes. The surviving militia soon pulls out, leaving the brothers & a handful of civilians they've rescued to hold their fortified building.
The brother narrating the first two installments (if he's ever named, I don't recall it) is left maimed & briefly suicidal when they rescue a girl from a pack of hungry zombies. Then the marauders & their "zombie dogs" attack. By the end of the second issue, their strongfold has fallen & the first brother is dying.
Barry, the older (or so I gather from the spare description) brother, takes up the narrative with issue #3. He saves what he can from the carnage, gets survivors to relative safety & buries his brother with the rest of their already slaughtered family. Then as #3 ends, Barry gathers up his weapons & heads back to their formal stronghold to take revenge on the marauder band.
As grim & desparate tales of survival go, this one has some intriguing elements. It's written in first person & told in present tense, adding a degree of cinematic immediacy to the storyline. Unfortunately, there are several occasions where Mitchell merely tells the reader about the aftermath of an important development, rather than showing the event - this saps drama from the piece. There are also a couple puzzling lapses in continuity - the girl they save in #1 simply drops from the narrative for a while. She reappears, we find out her story & she plays a part in the later plot, but the way she & other minor characters are handled creates an unduly choppy feeling. Granted, the brothers are the main characters & they're more concerned with each other than the others - but it still felt wrong.
Overall, Zombie Kisses is moderately interesting media-inspired horror/adventure. If you're into Romero's brand of inexplicable Living Dead carnage, give it a look."
~ Jim Lee, Scavenger's Newsletter
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