Zombie Apocalypse: Alternate Endings

Every enemy has a weakness. Every foe has a flaw. With zombies, it’s the head. You’ve heard it before. Shoot them pointblank in the face and they will no longer pose a threat.

Photo by Martin SoulStealer [Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.]

Photo by Martin SoulStealer [Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.]

But what if a new breed of zombie doesn’t respond to the universal bullet to the temple, then what? What if zombies could withstand a pummeling, and rise again to keep advancing toward a fragile humanity ready for extinction?

We’d all be in trouble, wouldn’t we?

For today’s Monday Mayhem, let’s explore the universe of zombies and their alternate endings. Humans can’t always win.

An Invincible Brain—In the 1978 movie Halloween, Michael Myers is a little boy who grows up to become a possessed psychotic out to seek vengeance against his hometown. Michael withstands a knife to the face and a coat hanger to the eye. Yet, he still keeps coming back again and again. Imagine a zombie with the same talent as Michael. It would be the ultimate opponent to defeat. Bullets would no longer work. Knives would become playthings. The undead would rule the earth and humans would flee for the mountains. There wouldn’t be anyone left after they’d get through with us.

Self-Healing—Imagine a world where zombies could self-heal from their wounds. The comic superhero Wolverine has the power to self-heal despite a body riddled with bullets or knife slashes to the throat. Take it a step further and ponder on the thought of zombies possessing that same power. No telling what would become of humanity if the guns can’t stop the undead from attacking. Every wound would heal. No one would be safe from the zombies’ destructive path. In this case, it bleeds but we can’t kill it.

Contagious Scratch—The zombie bite is the universal form for spreading the undead contagion. However, what if that was to change? What if the zombie bite no longer posed a threat? What then? What if instead of the bite a simple scratch would prove equally as menacing? No longer would the undead seek to propagate their kind with their teeth, but they would rip through doors with extended arms searching for people to scratch. The rate of infection would rise and the population would suddenly become undead in a matter of days. All because of a little scratch. A Band-Aid won’t help in this case.

If zombies featured invincible brains, self-healing as part of their makeup or a contagious scratch, one thing is certain, there wouldn’t be anyone left to tell the tale. Nevertheless, should humans know in advance of the fundamental shift in zombie behavior, the arms dealers throughout the world would dream of new defenses for the cities and new weaponry to put the undead back in their place—the grave.

RANGER MARTIN AND THE ALIEN INVASION, on sale October 21.

What new zombie trait would you find the biggest threat to humanity?

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17 Comments

  1. The ability to make hand-grenades made with their own hands. Turns everybody within a 15′ radius into a zombie.

    Reply
  2. There might be an opportunity here to look deep into the science of zombie existence. If a wound can regenerate, where is the energy and fuel coming from to allow the chromosomes and DNA to rebuild? (That’s one point of attack; undermine that molecular fuel supply.)

    Self-healing wounds would involve the same process as making the brain indestructible, but blood lost has to be replaced at the same rate, so where does the energy and the material necessary for cell building come from? Energy and matter cannot appear out of nothing, so if medical expertise knows what causes cellular integrity we can use that knowledge to block the enhanced regenerative processes.

    If medical and law enforcement personnel wore kevlar or carbon fibre body suits a scratch would never reach the skin.

    What we need is a courageous volunteer to catch one of them. I nominate Jack.

    Reply
    • zathra

       /  September 16, 2014

      I have seen ” DESTINATION : TRUTH ” on the Syfy Channel (The show’s good, still hate the ” Syfy ” label. ) Why have they not done anything on zombies / supposed zombies ?
      That Narcisse guy down in Haiti can’t have been the only reported case. They should find one & see if they can be rehabilitated & reintroduced into society, a la ” In The Flesh ( BBC America program ) “.

      Reply
  3. The most dangerous attribute zombies could add? Oh, that’s a no-brainer (ahem): speech. Communication.

    Reply
  4. For some reason a zombie Michael Meyers makes me think of Jason Voorhees. He’s rather zombie-like in a way. As for Wolverine, there’s the Marvel Zombies books, but I’m not sure how they worked with his healing factor. I always assumed that it would counterattack thing like lycanthropy, zombification, and vampirism. The scratch sounds oddly familiar.

    A scary ability that would them invincible? Independent parts, which is the best name I can give this. Basically, hacking off a limb of this zombie would end up with the main body and an animated arm coming after you. These things could throw their own head at you without a problem and it can reconnect the parts. Actually, I think there’s a videogame called NeverDead that has something like that.

    Reply
    • zathra

       /  September 15, 2014

      I can’t understand why a person, dying of lung cancer ( episode of The Waling Dead ) would come back with beast – like strength. One minute you’re dying of emphysema or lung cancer, then you die, you come back & you’re able to toss someone against a wall.

      Reply
      • No idea. Maybe the diseases of life do nothing to hamper the dead. Not like emphysema would make it hard for zombies to breathe. As for the strength, I’ve always wondered if they still have some adrenaline gland function. Almost like they’re programmed for hyper-aggressiveness, which amps up their strength. They might even care if such an act tears a muscle too, so you might see a zombie hurl someone into a wall and there’s damage that they take from it. It probably boils down to zombie type.

      • zathra

         /  September 15, 2014

        The more primitive areas of the brain supposedly survive longer, like the part holding unbridled aggression = abnormal strength. Zombies apparently ” devolve “.

      • So, what happens if you found a way to get a zombie drunk?

      • zathra

         /  September 15, 2014

        An intoxicated zombie – Get a designated driver with a designated TANK.

  5. What if the world was total zombie and what a second, Will Smith played that. What if zombies were in Congress, oh wait, they are there. What if a zombie controlled North Korea, wait he is in charge. Crap they are everywhere. Got to go to work and become a zombie worker.

    Reply
  6. The contagious scatch is the alternative ending which I find most interesting, and it has another implication too. A zombie might not need to be anywhere near you to infect you. If a zombie were to scratch itself on a rusty nail, or seom stray barbed wire, and then you were to come along and brush against it, they you could potentialy pick up the zombie infection. Indeed, the risk could sit there for many years, until someone had the misfortune to scratch themselves on whatever object was contaminated by zombie blood. There is the added danger here that even if humanity somehow managed to wipe out the zombies, there would always the possibility of them coming back. All it would take would be one person carelessly handling a sharp object which had been contaminated by a zombie at some point in the past. This version of the ‘contagious scratch’ will actually be part of the plot of the third book in my ‘For Those In Peril’ series, so it’s nice to see that others have thought of this option, too. Anyway, as always, a fun post for procrastinating over work with on a Monday morning.

    Reply
  7. zathra

     /  September 15, 2014

    Flame would still destroy them, unless they found a way to resist burning alive, or being hit with an incendiary device.

    Again I’m reminded of a cross between ” Torchwood : Miracle Day ” & ” Dawn of the Dead”.

    Reply

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