Is it a childhood nightmare, a modernized niche of folklore, a box-office-tested horror film staple, an ironic riff on American consumerism, or simply an undead corpse hungry for fresh human brains?
Maybe it's all of the above. On Saturday at noon, somewhere around 200 zombies assembled at a bar in midtown Manhattan and proceeded to terrorize the city well into the night. This was Zombiecon 2007, the third annual edition of the pre-Halloween flash mob, and these reanimated corpses took the day very seriously. Among the crowd were undead clowns, airline pilots, ballerinas, doctors, chefs, Roman generals, prom couples, and tennis players. There were also zombified versions of Santa Claus, Pirates of the Caribbean protagonist Captain Jack Sparrow, singer Amy Winehouse, and author Hunter S. Thompson.
(Others, like yours truly, just spruced up jeans and a T-shirt with theatrical blood and white face paint.)