Books: Gospel of the Living Dead


Gospel of the Living Dead

Gospel of the Living Dead is a solid summary of the entire Romero Canon and the various remakes of some of the films.

The structure is very logical — Pretty much one chapter for each film. Each chapter begins with an extremely detailed summary of that movie, and ends with a discussion of the religious issues raised by that particular film. The religious commentary was essentially limited to comparing Romero’s vision for hell-on-earth with one of the various circles of Hell in the Divine Comedy.

Frankly, I was a bit disappointed. There is entirely too much retelling of the movie’s stories, and not enough religious discussion. If I’m buying a book like this, I think it’s safe to assume I’ve seen the films.

The author is a professor of religious studies, so I was expecting something with more depth than just Dante’s version of hell. Maybe I was in an overly analytical frame of mind from having just read The Undead and Philosophy a few weeks ago.

If you are new to zombie movies, and want to get up to speed on the Romero quadrillogy, this is probably a good place to start. If you’re looking for Romero’s take on the ontological argument, you’re out of luck.

There is a good discussion of the social criticisms in the Romero films. Racism, sexism, and materialism/consumerism are all discussed in some detail. If you think zombie movies are just mindless violence and escapism, you’re wrong, and this book will help sort you out.

Anyhow, I give Gospel of the Living Dead 3 Jihadis out of 5.

3 Jihadis out of 5

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