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I am a huge HUGE fan of Mike Allred; I'll buy anything with his name on it. That said, you might not have as much enthusiasm as I do for him, and his art, in my opinion, is the main selling point for iZombie. I am a reluctant fan of the series. It's definitely not the first thing I'd recommend for those browsing for a new comic to read.

Chris Roberson has dipped his hand in many cookie jars, when it comes to literary genre's and mediums. He's written post-modern, mystery and science fiction novels, as well as numerous comic issues of Vertigo's Fables and related titles. I'm not exactly sure where his strengths lie, though sci-fi is his said preferred and most praised area of expertise. iZombie is not sci-fi, and I'm not sure he fully understands the comic medium enough to keep readers attention long enough to see the series through.

It's the pacing of the series, that for me, is all wrong. The characterization is solid, though I think a few characters are weak and generic. Also, not a whole lot happens. Aside from getting to know Gwen, her Friends and weird world they live in, 'Dead to the World' really doesn't offer much except a twist at the end that admittedly does make iZombie more interesting.

The premise is intriguing, but it's pretty simplistic, enough so, that it shouldn't take an entire 5 issue story arc to lay the foundation for it, which is all volume one really does. I'm not even sure it's necessary to read this arc to follow the rest of the series. The characters really don't need much of an introduction. The premise is pretty self-explanatory, and Gwen's self-revelation in issue #5, which could have easily of happened in issue 2, will be inevitably gone over and mentioned numerous times to keep new readers up to speed. 'Jumping On' points and keeping the continuity of a series accessible are both two things you can count on when it comes to most comics, especially Vertigo's.

The artwork is spectacular. Allred's 60's pop style is always a treat. It fits the series like a latex-glove, and does a top-notch job at distracting from how slow moving and slightly boring the story is.

I think the story has potential, but I'm waiting to see if the series will even last long enough to get better. Fables was kind of awful when it began. However, in time it grew into it's own, and it's totally awesome now.

If you're specifically interested in iZombie, it's worth a try. But if you're casually browsing comics and graphic novels, make sure you're collection is extensive enough to justify buying something so low on the must-own list.

Comic websites and forums are calling it a guilty pleasure. I call it a mild pleasure. I give it 3 stars, because (no offense to anyone) 5 star ratings aren't like ribbons at the Special Olympics. You don't get one just for participating. You can only set the bar so low before the ratings start to lose meaning. There are dozens of series that are much MUCH better. Unless you're saying iZombie is as good as Allred's Madman or Vertigo's American Vampire, than I just don't see how iZombie doesn't seem mediocre in comparison.
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on March 28, 2011
Gwen Dylan works as a gravedigger in a Eugene, OR cemetery by day. By night, she hangs out with her friends, tries to figure out the meaning of her life, and tries to just survive.

But her friends are a ghost and a werewolf (or, more accurately, were-terrier). Gwen survives by eating brains once a month, in the process absorbing the memories of the recently-deceased and -consumed and finding herself compelled to resolve any unfinished business they've left behind. Because Gwen is a zombie, but not just a mindless, shambling corpse. She is still the same person she was before she died (as far as she can remember, which isn't 100%). Why is she so special? That's what she wants to find out.

She and her friends aren't the only monsters in Eugene. There's a pack of vampires, running a paintball range. And there's a couple of monster hunters, including Horatio. Gwen should probably stay away from him, before he finds out who, or what, she really is. If only he weren't so darn cute!

Chris Roberson creates a group of interesting, three-dimensional characters in iZombie, and through them tells a story that's both hilarious and horrifying. But it's never predictable. Mike Allred's art is clean, clear, and detailed. He gives each character their own distinct look, and perfectly captures the tone of Roberson's story.

This is only the first installment in the adventures of Gwen and her friends, collecting the first five issues of their monthly comic. I can't wait to read more!
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on January 11, 2013
If you're looking for something similar to The Walking Dead, this isn't it. This is a much more light-hearted comic. Great art by Mike Allred (but am I the only one that thinks Gwen looks like Debbie Harry? Not that that's a bad thing). If you're looking for a fun, quick read about zombies, vampires, and were-dogs, with a bit of Portlandia thrown in, this is for you.
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on May 16, 2015
This is an abridged version of the complete review as it appears (http://ianwoodnovellum.blogspot.com/2015/05/izombie-dead-to-world-by-chris-roberson.html) at my blog dedicated to reading, writing (no 'rithmatic!), movies, & TV.

This is the first of four in a series that was pretty awesome. I am not typically a fan of series, but I got into reading this because I first watched the TV show, which is completely awesome. I was initially disappointed in the comic because they changed a heck of a lot for the TV show and I really liked that, but the comic grew on me as I read it and now I am a fan of this, too. Volume two dropped a bit and was not quite up to par for me, but three and four came roaring back so I recommend the whole thing.

There were some issues with it, nevertheless. For example, in this series, Gwen (who is Olivia in the TV show) is not a doctor who conveniently now works the medical examiner's office, but is working on a crew of grave diggers. She doesn't live with a room mate, but in a crypt in the graveyard, and she isn't in touch with her family or her old boyfriend. Nor does she work with a cop pretending to be a psychic to solve murders.

Everyone she knew in her old life thinks she's dead. Her grave is right there in the graveyard. For me the TV scenario was smarter. It's highly unlikely they would have four people working in a cemetery digging graves full time. Don't they have one guy with a little backhoe working part time these days? The expense of having four people would be way too high. OTOH, this is comic book fiction, so I guess we shouldn't expect too much realism.

On the good side (and purely in the context of the novel), they had this really interesting explanation for ghosts and other supernatural creatures which was rooted in Egyptian mythology. I don't know if this is true of the ancient Egyptians or not, but the narrator in the story was talking about how they believed in several different kinds of soul. They believed in what he termed an over-soul, which resided in the mind and was more rational and analytical, and an under-soul which resided in the heart, and was much more emotional.

The character said that when the over-soul is freed from the corporeal body, it becomes a ghost, but when the under-soul is so freed, it becomes a poltergeist. When the body dies, but the over-soul remains, it becomes a vampire, and when the same thing happens but the under-soul remains, it becomes a zombie. I thought that was pretty cool.

The character, Amon, goes on to explain that when the over-soul gets into someone else's body, they're deemed to be possessed. If an animal under-soul gets into your body, then you become a werewolf or were-whatever-the-animal-was. If you die but both souls remain in your body, you become a revenant, and he was telling Gwen, that this is what she is, so she's not actually a true zombie. This begs the question as to why Gwen is behaving like a zombie, craving brains, and worrying about losing her memories if she doesn't eat brains routinely.

Like I said, I recommend this novel and the following three.
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on July 6, 2015
Dead to the World is the first volume of the iZombie graphic novel series. This is the series that the new television show iZombie is based on. It follows Gwen, a young woman who unfortunately has become a zombie. To feed her need for brains, she works as a gravedigger. When she eats brains, she relives some of the deceased’s memories. And she has a ghost and were-terrier for best friends.

The Plot
Dead to the World is fun and lighthearted. There is not a lot of depth to the story, but it’s nice to read a fluffy comic about supernaturals. While there is violence and gore, it’s on the lighter side and it doesn’t get into any serious issues. Following Gwen around as she works through her new life as a zombie is entertaining but it doesn’t require much thought and it doesn’t really draw you in as much as it could. I would prefer a little bit more to my characters and my world building.

The Artwork
The artwork in Dead to the World is very appealing. Everything is in full color and I enjoy the art style. The drawings have a lot of depth to them, but are not uber-realistic. The art style was used in the credits of the show as well and it’ a nice, stylized design. The cover art is gorgeous and stands well on its own.

The X-Factor
I have to say that the biggest issue I had with Dead to the World is the comparison to the television show. I know it’s not fair to compare the two, since they’re two entirely different entities, but I love the show. It’s fantastic. The comic, on the other hand, has a lot less depth and a lot more crap going on, too much at times. The show made a lot of changes to the comic but I think they are all for the better.

The Verdict
I would recommend this to people who are interested in zombies or are a fan of the show and want to check it out. It’s a fun comic that’s easy to read and get through without much effort. If you’re looking for something with a message or a deeper meaning, look somewhere else. Otherwise, give it a try.
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on May 26, 2014
First of all, I absolutely love the art, both in the drawing style as well as the awesome colors (this is something I love about all of Allred's work that I've encountered). The story is also really unique. It's definitely not your typical zombie story. The main character is a very different type of zombie in that she's not completely mindless. There are also other interesting characters as well, including a ghost and a were-terrier (awesome). I have only read this volume so far, and I would say that so far it's really intriguing, but not necessarily the most exciting thing I've ever read. I hope that it picks up a little more as I read more, but I did really enjoy this first volume nonetheless.
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on May 21, 2011
iZombie was a pretty fun story of a young and hot female zombie who keeps her monsterdom secret from almost all of her friends. She works at a cemetary as a gravedigger and eats the brains of recently murdered and interred peeps. As a side effect, she gains some of the memories from the brains she eats, and then goes about trying to solve their murders. Give it a read.
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on March 22, 2015
What do you get when you cross a great story, wonderful art work and tremendous, original characters? iZombie is what! Gwen is a brain eating zombie, Elle is her friend, a ghost and spot is a were-terrier. I won't say anymore so not to spoil the fun!
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on January 15, 2016
It's a shame this series got cut short. It has some really great art and a compelling story. You don't see many comics in this genre of this quality anymore. I would definitely recommend for those interested. It is fairly different from the TV show as well.
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on April 19, 2016
Not as good as I thought it would be. Basically the only time I have liked a show adaptation of a show better than what it is based on. It just moves slowly and tries to incorporate too many types of supernatural beings. A person that turns into a human-terrier? Enough said.
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