Zombie Reanimation Theory
The Gothic eZine - Zombies

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The Hows and Whys of Reanimating Corpses

By Charles Alexander Moffat

There are two basic lines of thought when it comes to the reanimation of zombies: Religious and science fiction.

Religious theory looks for a supernatural reason for why the dead might walk again. It rarely attempts to explain why the zombies attempt to feed on flesh or brains. In contrast science fiction theories abound with ideas as to why the dead look to feed: To spread the zombie disease, to take away the pain of death, to satisfy a craving for food, and even psycho-analysis of the zombies' minds to determine what zombies want other than to eat your brains.

Examples of Religious Theory:

  • Satan/the Devil is reanimating the zombies.

  • A god has sent a plague of zombies.

  • An evil (or angry) spirit or group of spirits is reanimating the zombies (ie. the proverbial Indian Burial Ground)

  • A warlock, wizard, witch or necromancer is creating the zombies.

  • Some person found a magic book by accident and read a couple lines.

  • A group of pirates stole some cursed Incan gold.

  • Somebody disturbed the pharoah's final resting place and unleashed the curse of the Mummy.

  • Voodoo curse or any other kind of curse.

  • No more room in hell so the dead walk the earth.

    Examples of Scientific Theory

  • Cyborgian implants that send electrical impulses into muscle tissue to activate the muscles into action. This theory is easily shown with a frog's leg which is reanimated through electricity. Note that in this theory the zombies cannot spread but must be created in a lab.

  • Biological virus infects the dead body and reanimates it while feeding off of it. The virus fixes broken down electrical receptors and allows the body to function. The virus spreads through blood and can be spread to other creatures via injuries.

  • Nano bots reanimate the body using electrical impulses as above. The bots self replicate and anyone who comes in contact with the bots will reanimate after death.

  • An alien forms a symbiotic relationship with a corpse and uses it for transportation. It infects other people and spreads its children in corpses it finds (or kills).

  • Reasoning for Reanimating Corpses:

    There's also the matter of why would anyone want to deliberately reanimate corpses. Religious reasons vary wildly from the urge to destroy everything to greed, hatred and revenge, but scientific reasoning is more concise and has a relatively short list.

  • A person who has lost their spouse, child or parent attempts to bring back the dead and creates zombies instead.

  • The military is exploring the military applications of zombies and undead troops.

  • A pharmaceutical company seeks to reanimate corpses to learn more about saving lives, longevity, and bringing back the dead.

  • Someone wishes to communicate with the dead in order to discover if there is an afterlife.
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