I suppose I should add a few words of explanation.
As you know, I am a connoisseur of the arts. Mahler, Bruckner, Leonardo, Raphael, Shakespeare, Tolstoy, Yeats, Fellini, Inoshiro Honda...I savor all the meats of our cultural stew. It was inevitable that I would one day discover the Marvel Zombies.
In case you remain among the unenlightened, Marvel Zombies
is the hot new comic book based on a "What if" premise: What if an alien virus turned all the Marvel superheroes into flesh-eating zombies?
The short answer: They would eat every human being on earth within three days. (You have to admit that this is a funny idea.) But that's not the end of the story. Chowing down on the Silver Surfer gives the Marvel Zombies cosmic powers, thereby enabling them to travel through space in order to seek new worlds to devour. Within forty Earth years, the zombies have pretty much emptied out the entire universe.
Whenever they come close to polishing off all life forms on any given planet, the Marvel Zombies usually have a reflective moment: Why not leave a small breeding population?
But the Great Hunger outweighs their ability to reason. Thus, they completely gobble up the last creatures inhabiting the last planet in the universe -- leaving themselves doomed to starvation.
If you want to see that tale as a metaphor for unregulated capitalism, feel free. This parable explains today's headlines as well as anything else does.
The series has a running gag: Spider-Man -- the most reflective and angst-ridden of the zombies -- tends to become overwhelmed with guilt. "We used to be heroes!" Zombie Spidey cries in anguish. Alas, he is always shunted aside by the ultra-savage Zombie Hulk, who yells: "Hulk HUNGRY!"
Now, I can't say that I am a big fan of the Marvel Zombies. The series is far too grisly and repulsive, even for my
jaded sensibilities. Worse, it is repetitive and dull. The damned thing goes on for hundreds of pages. A premise of this sort would have found its ideal home in the old underground comics, where the same job could have been done in eight pages -- ten pages max
Still, the "capitalism" metaphor did amuse me. More than that. This premise can also be used to illustrate other
forms of self-destructive appetite...