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Reverie World Studios Forums - View Single Post - No undead race please
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Old 01-12-2010, 01:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Pilgrim View Post
Wikipedia is good enough to point out that the modern concept of "zombies" are not a natural evolution of old afro-caribbean voodoo myth or any other ancient myth.

Yes, the idea of the dead coming back to life had been thought of before, but thats hardly George A. Romero's (night of the living dead) fault and what we now conceive of as 'zombie', including the word, is a modern idea not based on historical predecesors.

Not every zombie since his movie can be accredited to his movie. Everyone has different sources of inspiration, again, ancient literature and the voodoo myth have been cited for many cases of the modern zombie, not just Night of the living dead.

Yes, thats kind of my point. I wouldn't have brought the subject up if I hadn't realised that it has become a recurring theme in fantasy. Perhaps i should have said "no zombies please" instead of "no undead". Ghosts and the like fit in more nicely (but i didn't specify or even make a big deal because I didn't forsee one guy feeling the need to grill me about my post).
Note that a lot of what you list is aimed at teenagers, and LoTR doesn't include zombies.

Lotr actually does have zombie, zombies. Middle earth is a much bigger world than just the trilogy and the hobbit. It has tons of material - and there are in fact zombies in some of it. Reanimated corpses, not just the undead.

true, I don't dislike all undead, as long as i don't consider it silly or over the top. in the wc3 campaign there are zombies, and also both "ghouls" and "accolytes" are zombies. Just look at them, they are rotting and green and clearly dead bodies. And if you choose the UD faction in WoW then you create a zombie, with bits of face hanging off and everything.

Acolytes are actually humans, not the undead. They're a cult that view death and returning as the undead the ultimate reward. Ghouls are an 'evolved' zombie that has reached true undeath according to the lore, though specifically what that means is vague. They are really just slightly more intelligent zombies though, yes.

As for the Undead in World of Warcraft you can't call them zombies, they've retained all their intelligence. They truly are undead, it's an entirely different concept in this universe. Zombies are thralls that serve a master or their baser instinct to feed. Undeath is closer to well, immortality seeing as how all they lose of themselves is living tissue, now they're reanimated flesh with all the intelligence of their former life. I think a better comparison for the Undead is actually Frankenstein's monster, not zombies. Not an exact fit but much closer.

You can dislike zombies for whatever reasons you'd like to, that is your choice. Personally I've never liked the concept of the undead for various reasons, though that has more to do with the concept of undeath allowing an unstoppable army in the literal sense. But your argument is more bias and essentially zombies are bad because they're popular than anything else.

You also need to keep in mind the undead - zombies and skeletons in particular are also a staple to those of us who enjoy pen and paper RPGs. Almost every D&D character has gone through a zombie and skeleton infested graveyard/crypt at one point or another. Sure, a horde of the undead taking over the world scenario is outrageous can get rid of the suspension of disbelief - but I don't think the undead, either zombies or skeletons in and of themselves can kill the suspension of disbelief. A contained incident of uncontrolled magic ressurecting everything in a graveyard for example in the context of D&D was cool and interesting, zombies taking over the world in an apocalypse scenario maybe not so much, but most incarnations of zombies in high fantasy are NOT the cheap thiller movie zombie, they're a type of necromancy and used to create a more traditional army. Not to take over the world with a disease or virus. A big difference between high fantasy zombies and modern film zombies is simple - a zombie biting you means you almost always turn into one yourself very rapidly, or if you die you'll come back as one. In high fantasy however it requires either an item of considerable power, or necromancy in the form of spells/runes and what not. Being bitten only means that part of your flesh has been gnawed at, not that you're doomed to be a zombie. And indeed, the everything dead within an area/or anyone bitten will automatically become a zombie is a silly scenario, the way high fantasy does it for the most part is far more palatable and doesn't ruin the suspension of disbelief, at least not for most of us.
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Last edited by Josh Warner : 01-12-2010 at 01:48 PM.
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