I love the movies 28 Days Later and 28 Weeks Later. Already a sucker for zombies, the movies' dark tone and alternatingly eerily calm and action-packed pacing guaranteed my love. Lucky for me, both a graphic novel and a comic series were also created.
28 Days Later: The Aftermath
28 Days Later: The Aftermath is a four-part graphic novel written by Steve Niles which makes an excellent companion to the two movies.
The first story, Development, as the title suggests, explains how the infamous Rage virus was created. This short, intelligent, tragic story takes a look at the important role morality plays in responsible science.
Outbreak then takes a look at how the actual infection spread. In the movies, we never get to see this actually happen. We're introduced to infected Britain "28 Days Later." This is day 1, and it's chilling.
Decimation happens roughly around the same time as the first movie. In it, a survivor in London has made a sport out of hunting zombies. But what happens when someone pushes on his turf? Out of everything that happens in this comic, this story involves the most gruesome behavior - and it's done by the living.
The last story, Quarantine, ties together the prior three stories. The story bridges the book into 28 Weeks Later and gives an idea of what had to be done to make Britain 'safe,' and it isn't pretty.
Every story has its excellent share of tense horror and intriguing characterization. 28 Days Later: Aftermath is a really marvelous graphic novel.
28 Days Later
28 Days Later is a 24 issue comic series published by Boom! Studios and written by Michael Alan Nelson. The latest trade which comes out this month collects the final four issues of the series. I was fortunate enough to find all 24 issues for sale on Ebay, and the series is definitely worth hunting down.
The series focuses on one of the protagonists from the original movie, Selena. If you enjoyed her in the movie, then this series couldn't be a better fit. Her character, history, and motivation are all expounded and by the end of the series she becomes a much more complex and relatable hero.
The length of this series also allows the apocalyptic world to be explored in depth. How do other, non-infected countries react? Do they send aid? What lengths will people go to to research this new disease?
Survivors of every sort are in this series. There are people who are willing to help, and people who reflect the world in which they now live. It's not just the zombies the protagonists, Selena and some (marvelous) characters created for the series, have to fight against. Their fellow humans, whether they be government sanctioned or self-empowered, are just as deadly.
Some of the scenes in this series are so wonderfully chilling that I won't ever forget them. A wonderful blend of intelligent and thought-provoking writing mixed in with gut-wrenching suspense make this series worth every penny.