The Zombie Aesthetics and the Post-Apocalyptic Franchise

  • Kevin Stewart


THE ZOMBIE AESTHETICS AND THE POST-APOCALYPTIC FRANCHISEON MARCH 22nd 1996, Japanese video game company Capcom Inc. released Biohazard, the first of their new immersive zombie survival-horror role playing games (RPGs) for the Sony PlayStation. Released in the West as Resident Evil, George A. Romero's model of the animated cadaver and Lucio Fulci's command of the atmospheric combined to provide the main inspiration for the game's visual and narrative aesthetic (Poole, 79): a complete and immersive reworking of the zombie genre by Tokyo based video game producer Shinji Mikami. Although not the first video game franchise to attain cult recognition or make a successful transfer to the big screen - Lara Croft and the Tomb Raider franchise come to mind - a determination, "to repackage the zombie as a mainstream monster and an icon of cool" (Russell, 171) clearly paid off: The Resident Evil games had succeeded...