Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Zombie Appearance

The public perception of zombies will make visual identification of zombies difficult in the earlier stages of the zombie apocalypse. As evidenced by "zombie lurches" and related halloween events, when people emulate zombies, they do so in the most graphic, gory sort of way. Think of most zombie movies, the zombies that most memorable are the most dilapidated.

However, during the beginning of the zombie uprising, most of the zombies will appear normal. Early on, before the masses have become informed, the virus will likely spread by bites. The only damage a person may take from a zombie may be a bite or a scratch, as the zombie will quickly be restrained and unable to further its feast. The virus will spread quickly as seemingly normal people (who are, in fact, infected) go "untreated". The lack of quick, lethal response, will allow the virus to spread even further, as infected individuals succumb to the virus, and rise again in a relatively unscathed state.

Thus, the first big wave of the undead will be unlike the zombie stereotype. Other than being room temperature, they will probably not look much different than the average living citizen. Vacant stare, shambling pace, lack of purpose: these are all qualities rampant in the living. It's only when they try to eat you that the distinction becomes clear(er).

Vigilance is the zombie hunter's primary weapon. Don't rely on a bloody trail of innards to help you distinguish zombies from the living. Subtlety is the virus' mode of transportation; it is how an infestation becomes an apocalypse.

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