"The Dead Travel The Cosmos... In Spandex!"
by: Protoclown


Spider-Man and Wasp desperately try to stop him, but he grabs Spidey by the arms and begins pulling apart his torso like he's made out of paper mache.

"Make a wish, Spider-Man! Bwahaha!"

Luke Cage (whose top half was also trapped within the sphere) swoops in on Gladiator from behind and stops him from completely tearing Spider-Man apart, but it's a temporary distraction at best, because none of these heroes are a match for Gladiator's strength in a toe-to-toe fight. But just then someone shows up in Iron Man's oldschool armor and gives Gladiator the serious stomping that he deserves!

"Yeah, that's right, I been walkin' in DOG SHIT all day, bitch!"

"Iron Man" then tells Spidey and Luke Cage to focus their Power Cosmic energy on Gladiator at the same time. They blast his head directly with the full force of their power, causing his head to explode, completely removing this zombie from the board. The real Iron Man demands to know who the imposter is, and he takes the helmet off, revealing himself to be...Forge! (Like you couldn't have guessed).

Forge: "Damn right I improved upon your suit design! There's a little
toilet back here now, so I don't have to wear a diaper like you do!"
Iron Man: "No one knew about the diaper! DAMN YOU, FORGE!!!

Forge mocks him for a while, pointing out that he's had four decades to study and improve on his technology. He says they're never going to get through the force field so they may as well just go to some other planet and leave them alone. Remembering that they came back to Earth to use Reed's old dimensional transporter anyway, the zombies quickly give up and go to the Baxter Building in search of the device.

"OMG you guys I think Macy's is having a sale!"

We cut back to New Wakanda and see the humans and zombies recovering from the attack. Spider-Man and Luke Cage are considered full fledged allies now and are fitted with cybernetic limbs to replace all the damage they took in the fight. And we also learn that the humans have managed to capture the Hulk (in Bruce Banner form) and are keeping him sedated so he doesn't freak out and rampage through the whole place. Cortez comes in, and Forge convinces him to reluctantly team up with the zombies, knowing that they cannot win the inevitable upcoming fight without them.

"Damn, Forge! You got a secret food stash somewhere? Cuz your ass got FAT!"

After reattaching Wasp's head to her robot body, Reynolds confesses that he's always loved her, that he was so afraid that she'd died in the battle that he was watching from safely within the bunker, and that she was always the one for him. So then she kisses him unexpectedly. Or, more precisely, she presses her teeth up against his face.

"Mmmm! Your lips taste like rotted flesh, Jan! Or, they would, if you had any left."

Of course everyone in the room is disgusted by this, human and zombie alike. But hey, when you're an old man, or a zombie, beggars can't be choosers. You stick with what you can get, you know?

And thus it was that Forge's face became forever frozen into that horrible, horrible death mask.

Forge asks the zombies why they came back to Earth, and they tell them about their plan to use the dimensional teleporter. This is very amusing to Forge, as he reveals that he long ago removed the device from the Baxter Buildling and brought it to New Wakanda. And of course, we cut back to the zombies as they realize they've searched the whole building and it's simply not there. Iron Man concludes that Forge must have taken it--if he got into Stark Tower and stole all of his technology, then it's not much of a leap to assume that he would've gotten into the Baxter Building as well.

"Uh oh! Security robots! Firelord, use your flaming Q-tip to destroy them!"

Forge explains that even though he took the dimensional transporter, he could never get it to work, so it's completely useless. The New Wakandans know that the zombies are going to come back after they realize the device isn't there, and Black Panther points out that they're seriously outnumbered and outgunned when they come back. Reynolds says that they have one ace up their sleeve yet, and he reveals a secret project he's been working on, which is the brain of Colonel America that he discovered and then placed into the deceased body of Black Panther's son.

If Frankenstein's monster had dressed like this (and been in America), he
would have been completely accepted. See, it's all about branding.

For some unfathomable reason, Black Panther is slightly offended that Reynolds was secretly performing FUCKED UP ZOMBIE EXPERIMENTS with his son's dead body. I mean, come on, T'Challa's got to get with the times! Everybody's doing fucked up zombie experiments these days!

"Uh, surprise! Your son is back? No? You're going to kill me now, aren't you?"

Colonel America seems a bit...confused by the sudden fight breaking out and calls for the Avengers to assemble and just starts punching anybody and everybody who gets in his way. He doesn't seem to remember the whole "being a zombie" thing, seeing just a bunch of freakish monsters standing before him.

Let's be fair here. If you saw that your friends had become zombie robots,
you'd probably punch first and ask questions later too.

The heroes finally get the Colonel under control, and a short time later the cosmic zombies arrive, frustrated that they can't break down the forcefield, but fully aware that they have all the time in the world to wait around for something to go wrong. T'Challa comes out and greets the zombies through the forcefield, and offers them a deal: he will let them use the dimensional transporter without putting up a fight, so long as the zombies will leave them in peace and go feast on some other poor dimension. Giant Man agrees to this, at which point the forcefield is dropped, and then T'Challa and the others enact their master "plan". Are you ready for this? It's a doozy. The plan is to storm outside of the forcefield and attack them while Reynolds raises up the forcefield again, locking them all outside to duke it out. Wow, what a stroke of genius! I'll bet it took a five-year-old to come up with that.

Look at poor Hawkeye, stuck in a girl's robot body. I'm surprised the others can even keep a straight face while fighting him.

Of course, one thing that goes terribly wrong with their poor excuse for a "plan" is that Iron Man seems to have gotten stuck on the other side. He tells the other evil zombies that he'll be sure to leave them a few scraps after he's chowed down to his cold black heart's content.

"Thanks for the invite into your home, boyos! Pip pip, cheerio!"

Iron Man roams around in the base while the battle rages outside (during which the Phoenix goes a little nuts and starts raining liquid fire down on everyone), until he finally rounds a corner and finds the humans he was looking for, but he also finds a couple other things he wasn't exactly expecting...

If they really wanted to be dramatic, they would have broken into the Thriller dance right then.

Back in the battle outdoors, Giant Man grows huge and starts smashing the shit out of as many people as he can, smearing Black Panther into ground paste, and smashing Wasp's head right off her body, which is a bit reminiscent of the scene where he bit her head off in the original story.

Unfortunately for Janet Pym, this was not the first time that her husband gave her the clap.

And inside Reynolds's lab, Bruce Banner has broken free of the restraints and attacks Reynolds, knowing that if he doesn't satisfy his hunger the Hulk will emerge at any moment and then he'll go on an insane killing rampage. During the struggle that ensues between them, Banner accidentally knocks Reynolds into the big obvious and oh-so-inconvenient lever sticking out on the control panel next to him, which of course happens to control the forcefield.

"Gah... if I told you... I had a huge... erection... right now, would you... stop choking me?"

After the forcefield goes down, all of the evil zombies rush in and quickly find where the humans are locked away in a bunker, for their protection. Giant Man grabs Black Panther's wife (Aunt May) when it suddenly occurs to him out of the blue that he's just not very hungry anymore.

"This is...well, it's sort of embarrassing, but after all this trouble, I'm really not hungry at all.
Not the slightest bit peckish! Terribly sorry for the inconvenience!"

Giant Man quickly convinces the others to stop attacking and note that the Hunger is completely gone (why it took far longer for these guys than it did for Black Panther and Wasp is beyond me), and then he realizes that they can go back to their old heroic ways and help them rebuild.

"So look, I know I ate everybody you people ever cared about,
but I can never wear a hat again. That's a fair trade-off, right?"

The humans aren't particularly happy about this at first (especially Cortez), but right as they're talking things through, the Hulk smashes through the wall shouting about how hungry he is.


A brutal fight ensues, wherein Hulk punches a hole through Phoenix and smashes her her head to a pulp, decapitates Firelord, decapitates the breasted Hawkeye robot, pops Iron Man like a grape inside his armor, and then feeds on Reynolds who runs out and commits suicide by Hulk because he believes that Wasp is dead and gone.

"Hulk dates never go so well, but Hulk not understand why?"

After finally getting a taste of human flesh, Hulk calms down and reverts back to Bruce Banner, who immediately tells the others that they have to kill him. They're basically like "you don't have to tell us twice!" and immediately blast his head off with their cosmic Galactus rays.

"HOLY shit you guys, I think I'm about to give birth here! You have to kill me
before the impending bowel movement does!"

With the threat now passed, they hold a funeral for all the fallen and the few remaining zombies (consisting now only of Giant Man, Spider-Man, Colonel America, Black Panther, Wasp, Luke Cage, and Wolverine) help the humans rebuild. Which I'm sure is kind of awkward, laying bricks next to somebody who ate your wife's brains like candy.

If I were Giant Man, I would shrink down to a smaller size so I could do a smaller share of the work and slack off more.

A few weeks into the rebuilding process, Giant Man holds a meeting at the now-repaired dimensional teleporter, stating that they don't have enough supplies, nor do the humans have enough of each other to fuck, to sustain themselves for more than a few generations. So he suggests searching alternate dimensions to find a new home where they can make a fresh start. You'd think it was a ploy to eat more people, but it really, truly is not.

"So we finally figured out what this big thing does...we think it's a webcam."

However, at this point, Cortez reveals his sinister plan, telling them all that it was he who sabotaged the teleporter all that time ago (he removed the sparkplugs), and he admits that he did try to kill Black Panther, that it was he who killed Black Panther's son, and that he's now going to kill his grandson as well. T'Challa of course is like "What the fuck, why are you telling me all this when you know I will kill you?" but then Cortez is like "Whoops, clumsy me, here's the switch to the teleporter!" and sends them all away to some unknown dimension.

Enjoy your stay in... THE DIMENSION WITHOUT COLOR!

Forge runs into the room too late and screams at Cortez a while, shouting "You imbecilic fuckhead, what have you done!?" Cortez doesn't care to be questioned like this, so he cold cocks Forge, knocking his ass out, and then he turns to the ceiling to shout to nobody at all about how the zombies are now somebody else's problem.

"Do you hear me, ceiling? Well, DO YOU???"

And of course, "The End?" appears with a question mark, so we just know there's going to be a Marvel Zombies 3 (the first issue actually comes out this week). The problem is, does anybody really care at this point? I mean, the first series was nice because it was a novel concept, but was the second one interesting at all? (I'll help you out here: the answer is "no"). Now that there's only a tiny handful of zombies left, none of whom suffer from the Hunger and are all ready to play nice with the humans, what reason do I have to care where they end up? I'm sure we'll all learn the answer to that question next year, when I do the inevitable Tales From the Longbox for Marvel Zombies 3.

In the meantime however, Arthur Suydam has again done a fantastic job with his Marvel Zombies 2 covers, all of which are tributes to older Marvel comics from back in the day! Like last time, I felt that they deserved to be shown off, so click on any of the images below to see a comparison of the classic cover and the zombified homage!


Found any weird, bizarre, stupid or funny comics that
should appear in a future "Tales From the Longbox" column?
Email Protoclown and let him know!

Reader Comments

Big In Japan
Oct 8th, 2008, 05:21 AM
Why does when somebody becomes a zombie, their lips suddenly disappear? Do they decompose at a rapid rate compared to the rest of the body? Do zombies even decompose in the first place? And why do their eyes start to glow? I don't believe there is any source of light behind the eyeball...

So many questions...
Oct 8th, 2008, 06:56 AM
I can't stand this zombies thing; it seems like a redundant idea that ran out of steam right away. The threat that it might have spilled over into the Ultimateverse is a worry; it's the only thing which could make that title crappier.

I was kinda hoping you'd be getting stuck into Marvel Apes, Mr Protoclown; it sounds horrific.

FYI, the right to wear purple is definitely worth fighting over.
Oct 8th, 2008, 07:55 AM
Ya know, I think they keep this series around for the covers. Just look at them, they're wonderful.
Oct 8th, 2008, 08:16 AM
The scream to the ceiling... Cheesy...
Forum Virgin
Oct 8th, 2008, 10:04 AM
I haven't read these, but based on the few snippets shown, I think that "Aunt May" is supposed to be Amelia Voght. But you're right; it's way funnier if it's Aunt May.
Retardedly Handsome
Oct 8th, 2008, 11:50 AM
After the last review I was almost persuaded into buying these. Instead I put them down and and grabbed something else...Thanks for reassuring that I made the right choice.
1.21 Gigawatts!!!
Oct 8th, 2008, 12:35 PM
Wonder how many of those robotic woman bodies they have lying around… Kind of makes you wonder what they do with their free time... or on second thought, it may be best left alone.
What Video Games?
Oct 8th, 2008, 02:17 PM
It still kills me that the zombies just stop being hungry. Kinda defeats the whole concept of zombies if you ask me.
Amicable Herculean
Oct 8th, 2008, 08:47 PM
Talk about beating a dead horse! geddit? Also, patiently awaiting the next All-Star Batman Article.
The Goddamned Batman
Oct 8th, 2008, 11:06 PM
Next All-Star Batman article is coming, after all the Halloween stuff is done!
Admiral of the Undead
Oct 8th, 2008, 11:39 PM
I love the Marvel Zombies series, but the opening to part II did piss me off slightly. Come on... Hulk isn't even in Thanos' league. Sure, Hulk is strong... but Thanos is the consort of death itself. A true blast from Hulk would only bruise Thanos, if that.

Oh well, the story was still interesting. :-D
Magic squirrel
Oct 9th, 2008, 06:18 AM
Awesome article, although I do feel it still at that time had alittle steam, it is true that with a possable 3 out soon the engine will come to a grinding stop.

What looks bad however is Marvel Apes (Uhh), And i Like Monkeys!

Cant wait for the God-Damn Batman...
Oct 9th, 2008, 07:03 AM
I still giggle at the zombie make out scene.
Imperial Stormtrooper
Oct 9th, 2008, 08:36 AM
Pfft. Those zombies are no match for a Stormtrooper and his E-11 blaster! Pew-Pew them all!
Oct 9th, 2008, 10:13 AM
The stealer of Pies
Oct 9th, 2008, 11:17 AM
Dear Godzilla:

What happens is, when they first get bitten, they start vomiting and whatnot, and all the zombie stomach acid they have now burns off their lips.

yes, this is the actual explanation from the first volume.

on an unrelated note, i just really really like these covers. they're just so damn great.
good fer what ails ye.
Oct 9th, 2008, 07:06 PM
What happened to Thor and the rest of the Asgardians? Because I'd like to see zombie Volstagg. And on a side note, what about the merc with a mouth?
Mr. everywhere
Oct 10th, 2008, 01:15 AM
hey have you guys seen that one new marvel spiderman (i say new, because it was the last one i have seen. think august), where they had a bunch of different parallel universe type stories? like for example: spidermonkeyman. basically the exact same storyline as the original spiderman, but with monkeys! brilliant right? right? no.
Doctor Caliente
Oct 10th, 2008, 01:37 AM
I'm sorry, but I simply loathe the Marvel Zombies... maybe that's what the authors had intended though...
Forum Chaos Lord
Oct 10th, 2008, 02:42 AM
There needs to be a Goddamned Zombie Batman.
Oct 10th, 2008, 03:07 AM
I actually liked this one. It tied up the loose ends nicely (like explaining why in the hell wasp stopped trying to eat people). I think it was more of a setup for the enevitable trilogy. Everybody knows part II always sucks compared to part I and III.

Answering a few of the questions (both in the article and in the posts):

The eyes don't glow, it's just the eye looses it's pigment. Standard zombie deal there.

It took the galactic zombies much longer to calm down because they had eaten so much. The more you eat, the hungrier you get. Again, standard zombie deal.

Hulk now has the power cosmic... thanos does not.

Afaik thor didn't make an appearance in the zombie universe.. remember, it's a parallel world, not the "real" marvel world. My guess is the norse gods don't exist in this reality. (And more importantly adding them into the plot would have complicated things dramatically.)

I think these zombies don't rot. The thing is the cells are dead though, so their bodies don't heal. Only possible explaination I can give you.

Now for my questions:

How did the "new" marvel zombies survive to become zombies? A team of guys with the power of Galactus and the surfer can't eat a bunch of third-rate characters? (Phoenix excluded).

Speaking of the power of galactus... Wouldn't consuming the flesh of the most powerful (and immortal) being in the universe give you the ability to oh.. I dunno REGROW YOUR FLESH?!?! Ever seen a scar on galactus even after all those battles? I rest my case.

If the hunger was so great then when did they have the time and enegry to graft on new limbs? Not only that, considering they can now frikkin fly, WHY did they attach new limbs? I mean vanity no longer becomes an issue when you smell like 40 year old meat.

Speaking of vanity. What, no robotic lips?

Also, cage seems to have grafted on an alien arm. Wouldn't he, you know, EAT that instead?

How do the heads talk? No vocal chords ya know.

Just some things to think about.
Oct 10th, 2008, 05:33 PM
Howard, Thor was in it, at least the first one. And I Think Godzilla was talking about the Cosmic Zombies, so the Eyes glow because of the power cosmic.
Forum Virgin
Oct 11th, 2008, 10:15 AM
About the whole lip thing; they sure do talk remarkably well without them! Really, try talking without using your lips and see how you sound. I guess its a zombie thing.
Amicable Herculean
Oct 11th, 2008, 07:40 PM
Remember those Twinkie ads they used to print in comic books?
Forum Virgin
Oct 12th, 2008, 04:12 AM
I can't help but think that a zombified Matter Eater Lad could actually be frightening.

As for the whole missing-lip thing, I've seen a few zombie films where the dead feasted on human face, resulting in the victims becoming lipless zombies. But that doesn't explain why such an injury designed to make certain background zombies stand out more was given to nearly all the Marvel Zombies.
Oct 12th, 2008, 08:22 PM
Crap, that's right, thor WAS in it. Well maybe in this reality thor is the only norse god left. Or, judging by the first issue of zombies 3, maybe they got sucked into the nexus?

I think the main reason for the lip thing was so the reader could tell who the zombies are, joking and plot problems aside. I mean most of the marvel heroes wear masks, and many of them, like spiderman and iron man even wear masks that cover their face. It could be difficult for a slower reader to determine which ones are infected and which aren't without such an obvious deformity. Although personally, I think zombies that you can't identify right off the bat would have been far more frightening.
Oct 12th, 2008, 08:31 PM
they already have skrulls though
Oct 12th, 2008, 08:54 PM
Eh... the skrulls mess is going to be one of those things we are forced to pretend never happened in the end. I like the zombies series because, for the most part it does NOT interfere with the "real" universe.

Before we beat this article to death, one more point...

I think I've mentioned it before, but the real plot hole that gets me that everyone else seems to overlook is the timeframe. Around 200 superheroes ate the whole earth, full of BILLIONS in a couple of weeks? Try to eat the biggest peace of food you can find... just shovel it in. Took a little while right? Now scale that up to the size of a whole person. Now by a billion. I don't care if some of them are as big as a house or if some of them do have super speed... there's no frikkin way! Plus there's the whole pooping thing. We establish in the first series that the zombies don't really digest their food that much (it eventually dissolves in their stomach acid, but not quickly like real digestion). We establish in army of darkness vs zombies that they do indeed poop (HULK NEEDS TOILET PAPER!!) So shouldn't the entire galaxy, literally, be full of crap? And pooping takes time just like eating.

Then we are to beleive the 8 or so left ate the entire galaxy in just 40 years. Come on! Galactus, who also devours entire worlds (all at once btw, instead of just one person at a time) has been around forever, and yet the galaxy pretty much is still there. So now 8 normal sized people can do it quicker??
Former Virgin
Oct 12th, 2008, 11:28 PM
I haven't read any of the zombie comics. The only way I know of them if from the excellent reviews here. My question is does zombie Wolverine ever do anything? In the panels that I've seen he appears to be a bit player at best.
Vigilante All-Star
Oct 18th, 2008, 04:50 AM
Howard C: Marvel Zombies 3 is taking place with the zombies invading the 616 universe...sorry about that.

The story actually started in Ultimate Fantastic 4, so the Ultimate invasion is done...
Forum Virgin
Oct 19th, 2008, 08:15 AM
This is for HowardC: The new zombies were formed because, basically, the heroes intentionally infect new beings they come across with super powers. It goes back to Reed Richards believing the virus was the next step in evolution. The same thing happened on the Skrull planet that the regular Earth FF ended up on (Black Panther, Storm, Torch and Thing), where the zombies infected four Skrulls that had the original FF's powers (including the Zombieverse's version of Lyja, Torch's Skrull wife).

It surprised me from the first panel that the zombies, for the most part, aren't wearing their Galactus gear... Hulk's still wearing the Galactus skirt, Wolvie's got a purple glove and Cage has a purple sleeve, but that's all I see. Also, note Spidey's two-toed look on his new leg? As for why they didn't try regrowing their limbs and flesh, maybe it wasn't that much of a priority for them at the time?

I think it's established that after they eat for a while, the Hunger DOES diminish some and the zombies are able to think semi-clearly, which is probably when they were able to come up with the grafting.

And that's all I can think of for your comments.

As for the eyes, it shows other non-cosmic zombies having blank eyes, also, just another identifier along with the lipless look.

Come to think of it, zombie vomit might explain why Spidey's mask ripped so easily in Dead Days.
Oct 21st, 2008, 02:47 AM
Chuggernaught: Zombie Wolverine doesn't really do much in this series (other than get all the skin ripped off one arm). I think Marvel has decided to just throw him into every comic they print, whether he belongs there or not, just like Spider-man.
Oct 25th, 2008, 10:32 AM
Say what you will, Robert Kirkman is still the man. I love Invincible and The Walking Dead (although the latter causes me just as much consternation as joy).

Can't wait for the next All-Star Batman.
An Arizona Horror Company
Oct 28th, 2008, 03:27 PM
We need a zombie J. Jonah Jameson.

Comic Geekery Incarnate
Nov 24th, 2008, 08:42 AM
HowardC: Galactus eats in moderation, either just enough to ensure he could contain Abraxas, or to to ensure it lasts as long as possible depending on if you want the Abraxas stuff to have happened. Not gorging himself like these guys do.

Hmm, what if this "Hunger" is related to the "Hunger" Galactus was affected by some time ago... No, you're right, let's never speak of that again.
Saturday Night Slammaster
Nov 29th, 2008, 12:15 PM
What the hell did Wolverine do all issue? I mean, if he's still alive, you'd expect him to, you know, do something, right?
Space Viking Repo Man
Nov 30th, 2008, 08:10 PM
I adore the Marvel Zombies. Yes, it's absurd and insane and I'm not exactly sure how they could take down the Silver Surfer and the power cosmic, but I don't take it as seriously as I should. Part of the appeal is seeing how far the premise can be stretched, and how bad it could get.

And the covers are AWESOME. But at this point, I'm thinking they should throw DC a line for a Marvel Zombies vs. DC Zombies. That's the only way it could get better. Zombify the DC Universe and this could get so awesome so quickly.
Jan 28th, 2010, 03:05 AM
'S been at least a year already... So where's our review of part 3? And 4? And Returns? And I hear they're making a 5... So Marvel Zombies has the sequel power of any other modern horror franchise, at least.

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