Sweetooth, America’s #1 candy-creating town, has a high fructose zombie problem. Nearly the entire town is owned by the evil Yumzi Corporation, so no one expects a thing when the company’s Snakatak candy bars start turning mindless consumers into mindless consumers of living flesh. Well, no one except the town outcast, Clea. Armed with an over-sized lollipop (great for caving heads in) and backed by her former Chem teacher, his assistant, and her best friend, Patti, Clea takes on the ravenous horde of zombies and attempts to defeat Yumzi‘s efforts to unleash the Sugarpocalypse.
The first three of issues of High Fructose Zombies have a lot going for them and are a great example of a self-published comic using limited resources, design elements, and fan interaction to its full effect. Created by the husband-and-wife creative team of David Phillips (writer/letterer) and Sarah Braly (artist/inker), High Fructose Zombies definitely features a zany zombie tale that many will enjoy (especially the use of the word “fudge” similar to BSG’s stand-in f-word, “frak”). While I didn’t find myself completely hooked by the story, I guarantee that those who enjoy humorous genre tales are likely to get a kick out of this one and its spunky, kick-a-- lead character, Clea.
As, I mentioned previously, the design elements of this book are top notch. As odd as it might be as a compliment, the first thing I noticed about High Fructose Zombies was its excellent front credits page. The layout is clean and fun, both creators are featured prominently, and the social media accounts for High Fructose Zombies are clearly presented to readers. It may be something a fan never notices, but for an individual involved in marketing and/or publishing, this is a good sign of the intelligent, creative minds behind the book. In addition, each issue features an amazingly realistic advertisement for Yumzi’s latest killer candy creation, which operates like a charming little button at the end of each issue. Also, I’ve got to mention the ingenious idea to use un-inked pencils for flashback sequences. Again, a very smart move.
The biggest element that High Fructose Zombies was in desperate need of was full-color interiors. Braly’s art is great, but her style and the candy-filled story begs for the bright, jolly colors that finally appeared in issue #3. The colorless state of the first issues can, hopefully, be corrected in a future trade paperback, and, again, I must say that it is another smart move that Braly and Phillips have already zeroed in and solved this weakness in the book.
FINAL SCORE: 3.5 Zombie-Creating Snakatak Bars out of 5
You can learn more about High Fructose Zombies, the creators, and purchase copies of the current issues at the official website, www.highfructosezombies.com. You can also find High Fructose Zombies on Facebook and Twitter.
That’s all for now, comic book sniffers! Remember, never touch a woman’s lollipop.
'Till the end of the world,
-Bryant the Comic Book Slayer