July 9, 2005

May I Pick Your Braaiiinnnss?

I have a quick question about zombies.

I know they really want to eat my brains, but what happens if they just can't get any brains, for like 6 months? Do they pass out? Do they get really irritable from low blood sugar? I don't get it. Would a chimp brain do in a pinch?

Does anyone know the zombie rules? Enlighten me. The comment board for this post is CURRENLTY CLOSED but comments are still there for your reading pleasure.

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Posted by Steven | Archive

I can't really vouche for the zombies, but when I don't get any "brains" for 6 months I get pretty irritable...

Would imagine they would feel the same

Posted by: Nhyx at July 9, 2005 5:55 AM

They just die, don't they? Like in the movie 28 days? Or 29 days? Whatever it was?

Posted by: Sara at July 9, 2005 6:11 AM

If that's the case, then what's the average life expectancy of a starving zombie?

Posted by: Steve at July 9, 2005 6:18 AM

Well, they obviously die. Except they don't stay dead, because their zombies.

Though they would be less constipated. All those brains without a trip to john...

Posted by: Lynx at July 9, 2005 6:19 AM

Well, my cousin is a zombie, and whenever he doesn't get his brains, he explodes in a million tiny pieces.

Alright, not *every* time. Just that once.

Posted by: The Man at July 9, 2005 6:24 AM

The movie you were thinking of is "28 Days Later."

"28 Days" was where Sandra Bullock put the audience into an undead state.

Posted by: Steve at July 9, 2005 6:27 AM

It's all determined by the brain! I did a little research for you and you can learn all about them here:


And if after reading you become scared, you may want to invest in something from here:


Hope that helps (I cannot believe I had nothing better to do this morning, then research zombies).

Posted by: soapbox.SUPERSTAR at July 9, 2005 6:28 AM

Didn't find specific info about brains/no brains after 6 months but this wikipedia entry should lead you to it. BRAINS!!!!

Posted by: chris at July 9, 2005 6:38 AM

Just a couple days ago, I was intrigued by this book and thought to myself, "Dude, I should buy this, I mean you never know when you're gonna need to know everything about a Zombie and how to successfully survive one..."

It's called...

"The Zombie Survival Guide : Complete Protection from the Living Dead"
by Max Brooks

...and it's on Amazon, for all your enjoyment.

Steve, I think it will answer all your questions and then some.

Posted by: Tiffany at July 9, 2005 7:03 AM

I have a question,
Does any one think about what would happen if zombies really borke out and attacked ? Do you think about who you would feed to the zombies to make your getaway?

Posted by: Al at July 9, 2005 7:05 AM

Well, according to Romero, nothing happens. They crave to eat human flesh, but don't really need it.

According to "Zombies?", if they go without brains for about 6 months, they probably are on their way of breaking the habit - which is a good thing, if you're a zombie and crave a social life.

People tend to dislike you digging through their skulls to nibble at their frontal lobe.

Weird, huh?

Posted by: Eric Maziade at July 9, 2005 7:17 AM

I think that when they can't get their hands on brains, they eat tapioca instead. It's very similar.

And when they can't get anything at all to eat, they all turn into Lindsey Lohan. *shudder*

Posted by: Mir at July 9, 2005 7:22 AM

I feed my pet zombie extra firm tofu with a light ketchup sauce-- he doesnt seem to know the difference and its much healthier for him. Sometimes as a treat I serve it in a ceramic skull bowl I made especially for him in sculpture class. I know he's happy when he drools the ketchup all down his shirt. awww.

Posted by: Sarah at July 9, 2005 7:26 AM

I work at the DMV... And as you all know... Most of the employee's there are in fact zombies. That said... If a zombie doesnt eat brains for 6 months they just don't poop much... And their breath improves.

Posted by: Carlosvaldosta at July 9, 2005 7:43 AM

I thought a zombie on the No-Brains diet for six months wound up a slimmer, trimmer zombie ready for the bathing suit season. I guess I was wrong.

Posted by: Septyn at July 9, 2005 8:24 AM

If zombies don't get brains for a while, they go into a sort of out-of-body experience and wander the world, until their actual body senses human flesh around. Then the spirit of the zombie gets yanked back into the body as soon as the human sees the zombie, and that's why zombies always wake up as soon as a human approaches them in horror movies.

Posted by: Yaanu at July 9, 2005 8:52 AM

I suppose the real questions is: how far are they willing to get those brains? Because outside of 28 Days Later, zombie movies seem to be isolated in one community. Do zombies respect city limits?

Posted by: Kurt at July 9, 2005 8:53 AM

See "Land of the Dead". Zombies are willing to travel afar for brains, flesh, and freedom.

Posted by: K at July 9, 2005 8:57 AM

The desire to eat brains appeared with the movie Return of the Living Dead. In that movie zombies are re-animated by a chemical called Trioxin. Apparently it huts to be dead and decay. A lot. Eating brains makes the pain go away.

Posted by: Dennis at July 9, 2005 8:57 AM

Interesting you should ask, because I can't stop thinking about zombies. REAL ZOMBIES. Zombies are cool, and by cool I mean totally sweet.


1. Zombies were mammals
2. Zombies crave brain ALL the time
3. The purpose of zombies is to run (or walk) and say, "uhhhhhhh" and kill people

Personally, if I were a zombie and went human-fleshless for more than a few days, I would get all constipated and have that not-so-fresh, bloated feeling. I wouldn't be able to swim.

What happens when vegetarians turn zombie?

Also: the life expectancy of zombies is zero. Duh.

Posted by: AllYourBrainsAreBelongToUs at July 9, 2005 9:23 AM

i am fascinated by this line of thinking! i have never really thought about zombies for more than a few minutes at a time. more the "could there be a zombie under my bed tonight? hmmm. i don't hear any groaning or scratching...i must be ok then" kind of thoughts.

i have (in admittance of being TOTALLY lame) watched every episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and they didn't really cover zombies too much. well, maybe a few episodes.

this is very informative. thank you.

Posted by: nicole at July 9, 2005 9:26 AM

Though I've watched as many zombie movies with my friends as we can get our hands on, I can't say I'm an expert on the subject. But I'll at least put my two cents in.

Recent zombie films have pointed to the concept that they (the zombies) either starve or decompose after a certain amount of time. It kinda makes sense; starving sounds kind of dubious, because they're -dead- already, but decomposing to the point where they can't chase you down and eat your delicious delicious brains doesn't sound too far-fetched. So, I'd assume that, depending on the weather and temperature, they'd get to the "butyric fermentation" stage. I'll not get into the details here, but suffice to say, even the most vigorous reanimated yuckie would have a hard time shambling after you to do its nasty zombie thang.

Posted by: Kim at July 9, 2005 9:31 AM

I would consider myself obsessed with zombies. i don't care for 90% of the zombie movies i've seen in my life, but that doesn't stop me.

i have thought out rather elaborate and drastic zombie survival scenarios depending on the level of outbreak. having read The Ultimate Zombie Survival Guide has helped quite a bit.

my wife is rather reluctant to allow my obvious neurosis to continue unabated. but before she locks me up, i wanted to mention that in all honesty zombies don't consume human flesh for nutrition. they will crave it 'til the ends of the earth, but it just sits undigested in their cute zombie gullet.

i think after 6 months they would probably just be considered "unsuccessful" by their zombie brethren. i hope that helps. and i suggest to start planning yourself!

Posted by: clockwork at July 9, 2005 9:57 AM

I asked something similar a few weeks back. This is taken from my lj.

"Something I just don't get

If zombies did suceed in killing the living or whatever the fuck they do, what would they do after that? Die? Eat each other? Go to DisneyLand?

Maybe absinthetic can answer this question."

Morningstar1009 said "i've wondered that myself. i doubt they need humans to 'survive' as they don't really live. they would probably just wander around lost forever, until they fall apart/deteriorate/decompose."

Absinthetic said "MorningStar's correct. A zombie doesn't require human flesh/brains to live, since their digestive systems don't work anymore. They eat and kill as simply as a primal instinct. It would probably take up to 5 years for a zombie to completely decompose and not be able to move anymore.

Interesting thing to think about: Since zombie stomachs don't work, they can't digest and *ahem* evacuate the food. Therefore, in theory, if a zombie kept eating, his insides would fill up with undigested meat, causing one of two things-

1. The meat would be forced out the anus, which would be an odd thing to see....fingers and ears squirting out a zombie ass....

2. The zombie would bloat (as the human meat slowly decomposes over time, it would create gas) and probably explode."

Posted by: rx1221 at July 9, 2005 10:05 AM

Zombies don't really need brains. They simply instinctively want to eat anyone living; however, they don't need the brains for sustenance.

Posted by: Alex Cabrera at July 9, 2005 10:27 AM

And another thing - 28 Days Later WAS NOT a zombie movie and the fact that people consider it one is a sign of ignorance. 28 Days Later was a movie about people getting a virus while alive called "rage" and going crazy. It's important to note that they DID NOT DIE BEFORE GOING CRAZY. That is why they died from starvation, because they were still alive and had nothing to eat. Zombies, on the other hand, are already dead and actually rise from the dead. Now there's a few theories as to why this happens

1.) They get a virus that kills them and then they return from the dead to feast on the living

2.) There's no more room in hell, a person dies and doesn't fit so they start to walk the earth, when they bite someone, that person dies, doesn't fit in hell, and comes back also and so on and so forth. This is the most philosophically interesting of the two since it never mentions what happens if a good person dies during an outbreak. The extrapolation of this is that there is no such thing as a good person left on this earth.

Posted by: Alex Cabrera at July 9, 2005 10:31 AM

Someone said they die, and I thought they were already dead...

This whole Zombie stuff is just SOOOO confusing!

Posted by: DannMan at July 9, 2005 10:31 AM

Huh, I thought zombies never had to worry about such things--don't they always have access to brains, don't they just hop in the back of their Dragula, and off they go to the market...? They don't teach this stuff on Animal Planet, pity....

Posted by: LL Locke at July 9, 2005 12:18 PM

I'm not sure what happens to Zombies if they don't eat brains for 6 months, but I do know that they also like Yogurt, what my big brother says, so maybe it wont be a problem, I think.

Posted by: Rockchild at July 9, 2005 12:43 PM

really great stuff here. someone should make a movie that has a couple of zombies as it's stars and simply follow them around as they do their zombie thing (insert joke about that Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez movie here)... but seriously, the thought of watching a really successful zombie stuffing himself , bloating, and then exploding is a real goldmine! This movie needs to be made. All it takes is one brave soul who's ready to max out his credit cards to get it done, and we'll all be watching the video by next fall.

Posted by: felix at July 9, 2005 12:53 PM

Ok, in the movie Return of the living dead, they capture a zombie and question it.
This is what the interrogation reveals.
Brains are not a form of sustenance for the undead; they help soothe the pain of being undead, rotting, rigor, and everything that goes along with being a walking corpse.
Sort of like taking a giant, wrinkly, grey Tylenol.
This is really the only documented case of an explanation that I am aware of in a zombie movie, and I have seem a lot of them, 28 Days not being one of them because the people in that movie are not zombies.

Posted by: Motorcitybubbleboy at July 9, 2005 12:57 PM

Dude, what happens if a zombie gets bitten by a vampire and vice versa? Who becomes what? There really needs to be some sort of guide book to answer these perplexing questions. Nice jobs answering the brain questions though, im impressed.

Posted by: amy at July 9, 2005 1:28 PM

I still think they eat Yogurt.

If a Vampire bites a zombie, they become blood sucking brain suckers, I think.

Posted by: Rockchild at July 9, 2005 2:43 PM

A males brain is 30% bigger than a femals brain, its science!

Posted by: Dr Scientist at July 9, 2005 3:10 PM

My sisters a zombie. She likes sugar, glocose syrup and e numbers. Maybe they can live on candy? Like, the vegitarian ones could. My sis has never tried to eat my brains.

Except for the time she bit my arm

But thats not realy brains eh?

Posted by: Cat at July 9, 2005 3:14 PM

I did not know there where other people in the world who worried about the undead. I keep a supersoaker 5000 loaded with holy water by my bed at night just in case.

Posted by: Steve at July 9, 2005 4:11 PM

According to Ghastly, zombies crave something rather different... (NSFW)

Posted by: The Jester at July 9, 2005 4:14 PM

My mom once came into my room when i was a kid and flicked holy water at me while i was in bed. She never told me why, giving me some lame non-answer like, "be holy", but maybe she was on zombie-watch. Wow, i should give that woman more credit. What does the holy water to to them?

Posted by: amy at July 9, 2005 4:32 PM

I'm surprised zombies don't get smarter after eating all those damn brains. You'd think they would, and become zombie professors, rocket scientists and bartenders, but no, they stay groaning idiots whose only vocabulary consists of "Urrgggh", "Aaaagggh" and, of course, "BRAAAAAAAINS!!!"

Posted by: Anthony at July 9, 2005 4:50 PM

That's not a problem. If they can't get any brains, they just re-read old copies of People Magazine. I do that a lot when I sit on the toilet at home and find the mind-numbing effect to be similar to that of becoming a zombie. Try it at home!!!

Posted by: Bob at July 9, 2005 5:11 PM

I always figured zombies didn't live that long anywa, but the movies happen so fast that you don't realize their slowly rotting away.

Posted by: Brendon at July 9, 2005 6:11 PM

I am just thrilled at the fact I'm getting to comment on the sneeze. *awesome*

I think, maybe there wouldn't be enough sustanance to keep them from decaying all the way, so they'd fall apart.

Posted by: Cory Jackson at July 9, 2005 7:26 PM

BAH, I JUST GOT THE 42nd comment, w00t!!!

Posted by: Cory Jackson at July 9, 2005 7:27 PM

id just like to say, no, when the zombies dont get their human brain for 6 months, they go for your toes, because all those thoughts that you lose are absorbed into your toes. this is also known as when you need an amputation, all these doctors are zombies in disguise. does that explain their face masks? good, it should.

Posted by: Alli at July 9, 2005 7:42 PM

In one of the movies they lured all the zombies to a power plant with cow brains as the bait. So I would have to assume that based on that evidence, any brain will work.

I'd postulate that the difference between human brains and non human brains would like the difference between gourmet food and fast food. One day you can have a delicious meal at an expensive restaraunt, and then go to mcdonalds the next day. So today I'll eat human brains, and tomorrow I'll grab a chimp brain and two hamster brains for dessert.


Posted by: DarkAngel at July 9, 2005 8:37 PM

There is only one "true" zombie and his name was Jesus. He rose from the grave and doled out sage advice for 40 days. He neither ate nor craved human brains.

Posted by: seattle slough at July 9, 2005 8:43 PM

What happens whe Zombies run out of brains?

They form Argent.

Posted by: guest at July 9, 2005 8:44 PM

Exploding zombies? And finally, monsieur, a wafer-thin brain.

Posted by: san antone rose at July 9, 2005 9:09 PM

"Dude, what happens if a zombie gets bitten by a vampire and vice versa?"

I think if a vampire bites a zombie, nothing happens, because I don't think zombies have blood and so 1) the vampire wouldn't be biting any zombies in the first place and 2) even if it did bite a zombie for some reason (maybe the vamp fell with his mouth open on the zombie?), the vampire-turning-into "virus" or whatever wouldn't spread in the zombie.

I do think a zombie biting a vampire would result in some neat hybrid creature, though.

Posted by: Marney at July 9, 2005 9:29 PM

Well Mr.Scientist... it could be because most males are about that much bigger :-P

And zombies crave brains, they don't NEED them. Plus, I agree with the decomposition theory!

Posted by: Sara at July 9, 2005 11:24 PM

re: Motorcitybubbleboy's comment about brains soothing the pain, i agree.

in the manga Battle Angel Alita there's a villain who feasts on brain in order for the endorphins from the brain-- basically like taking a huuuugeass dose of morphine. it's the only way he can deal with the pain of his existence. since the pain of being undead would be quite acute, beyond being cured by a Carebare bandaid even, it seems logical that they would go after something that would provide them a chemical rush with possible numbing or pleasurable effects.

i don't know anything about brains, though, so i don't really know any science to back that up.

Posted by: angsty cola at July 10, 2005 12:34 AM

In 28 days later... the zombies lasted any where from 28days to 56 days... or so the movie says with the little "28 days later..." warnings...

Posted by: Austin at July 10, 2005 2:37 AM

I dont know call me a freak, but do I smell a really intense "Steve, Don't Eat It !" in the works?
P.S. I triple dog dare ya.

Posted by: motorcitybubbleboy at July 10, 2005 2:47 AM

i think its not the brains themselves that zombies crave, more the intelligence within. this would explain why there are so many undead school teachers. they enjoy sucking the intellect slowly out of a class until they are in a brain dead stupor. i have experience in the matter as my science teacher last year teacher was in fact a zombie.

Posted by: sloth at July 10, 2005 4:03 AM

I think animals being fed each other's brains might have led to the BSE/CJD problems we're having.
Something about prions or some crap like that.
Anyway, hello from the UK.

Posted by: Justin at July 10, 2005 4:41 AM

Since so many zombies are walking around, it might be helpful to recognize one. I've been told that they don't always have a pale complexion, walking around with their arms sticking straight out.

I've always suspected those people who press elevator buttons but nothing on the panel lights up. Sometimes they have to poke over and over for the elevator even to recognize they are there. Do you really want to get into an enclosed elevator with these 'people'??

Be very careful.

Posted by: mur at July 10, 2005 4:58 AM

Ah, but there are two KINDS of zombie. The first is the classic spirit-driven kind. This type of zombie is reanimated through dark magic. In this case, the animating force is not subject to actual physical hunger, and the lust for brain matter is generally just an offshoot of their hatred of life. If this kind of zombie is denied its gory meal, it will eventually become insane with rage until it can feed (much like a vampire that is denied blood).

The second, modern type of zombie is the science-born. These creatures are essentially formerly-dead humans who have been reanimated via some primal biological mechanism, such as a virus. This type of zombie does have a minimally functioning digestive tract and does require food to continue its existence. This type of zombie can survive on flesh of any kind, but prefers brain matter because it is high in calories and easily digested. However, if this type of zombie is denied at least some form of sustenance, it will eventually starve to death.

Posted by: Devil Ed at July 10, 2005 5:24 AM

zombies do not putrify.they exist in a state of suspended animation.due to reanimation of the dead at different stages of decomposition,they only appear to rot unlike most of my living freinds.

Posted by: samuel p reese at July 10, 2005 9:13 AM

It all depends on the zombie.

If we are talking Romero zombies, then nothing will really happen to them. They don't "need" to feed, they just have the compulsion to do so. As a clarifying point, Romero's zombies never wanted just brains; they just wanted to eat some type of flesh.

If we are talking Dan O'Bannon/John Russo zombies, then I believe they would just go hungry. Being as they are undead, they obviously can't starve. I'm still not quite sure what O'Bannon and Russo's zombies' obession with brains is.

Hell if I know.

Someone mentioned in an earlier post about wether or not we think about what would happen in case of a zombie outbreak. Sure I do. Doesn't everyone?

Posted by: snortin_php at July 10, 2005 9:16 AM

oh yeah!my god only a true zombie would post at 5am on a sunday mornibg

Posted by: samuel p reese at July 10, 2005 9:16 AM

Man, we know some shit about some Zombies don't we. Best to be prepared. There was a funny post about a Zombie getting all the brains it wants. So a Zombie can grow fat on brains if it has the access or do the eaten brains just run right through it? Brain Eating Contests.... that Kobrainyasi Zombie wins it every year, shit, he trains for that fucker.

Posted by: elronjeremy at July 10, 2005 11:45 AM

depends on what zombies your looking at.

the romero zombies apparently dont die.they wither.yet 28 days later zombies die after a while.

Theres really only 2 for me at least

Romero zombies:
dont eat for sustinence but out of instinct.
1 shot to the head and its dead.or severe trauma to the brain or spinal column (decap)
and of course if bitten you eventually become one.but the cure for the spread is an amputation of the limb.DO IT QUICK!

28 days later zombies:
from what i saw you can just kill them.
their not even zombies per say.its more of a SEVERE anger problem on a massive scale.and you can get any blood in you (duh) or you turn.
and they run which i find kinda stupid.

Zombies are so much better when they walk since their only a true threat in numbers.when they run i think it defeats teh purpose i mean one can take you out.

email e if you have any questions.

Posted by: rein at July 10, 2005 11:59 AM

After a certain period of time, I imagine they would hibernate, or eat their own brain, sort of like for a snack.

Posted by: burrrrr at July 10, 2005 12:09 PM

I prefer the "Shaun of the Dead" Zombies and their... ummm... "rules". As Far as I can tell they are all about the brains, just Human meat (yummy). Their completely consumed prey, obviously, doesn't become a Zombie, only those who are bitten and not killed.
I can only assume that they can exist eatting some other type of meat as well due to their insane rate of reproduction or transformation... within a very short time of the Zombies taking over, everyone is either dead or has become a zombie and then what would they eat?
Now here's a question, if Zombies did take over... and we'll assume they ONLY eat humans... would they then begin to "farm" humans?

Posted by: Joe at July 10, 2005 12:33 PM

If they're dead, they don't need to eat at all. THe brain eating thing was probly jus added to make a shambling blob that makes unintelligible gibbering noises seem more scary.

Posted by: Draconid at July 10, 2005 6:31 PM

The Zombie Survival Guide mentioned above says that the stuff they eat does not "feed" the zombie in the traditional sense; that is, they do not process the product of or derive energy from eating people. However, the Z.S.G. also takes the position that zombies are after any bit of human flesh they can get; they don't specifically go after brains, which suggests that perhaps the brain-eating zombie type has a different physiognomy. Anyway, zombies don't have the ability to digest and so anything they manage to eat piles up inside them until something ruptures and the horrible mass of decayed flesh pours out of the zombie in a stinking pile. Even so the zombie would continue doing its zombie thing until arrested by the traditional shot to the head.

Which brings up a related point, I guess; since zombies are vulnerable only in their brains, perhaps when they mutter "brains" (or, sometimes, "BRAINS!") they are crying out for help and giving instructions to the living adversary...? Or maybe they're talking to themselves and trying to remember where not to get shot. The Z.S.G. says they can't vocalize though, so it would contend that the brain-eating fully vocal zombie type is not a real zombie, but rather a cheap Hollywood imitation.

Great book, though, well worth the read and quite funny. He's Mel Brooks' son, I was told.

Posted by: T at July 10, 2005 6:41 PM

I'm pretty sure they keep a coupla cans of these in their pockets: http://www.bozosoft.com/mike/meat/brains-can.gif

'Dems good eatin'.

Posted by: chocky3000 at July 10, 2005 7:19 PM

What if the Zombies ate cow brains and contracted Mad Cow Disease. Can you imagine a Zombie with Mad Cow Disease? That would freak me out!

Posted by: Zclone at July 10, 2005 8:07 PM

"What do we want?!"
"When do we want them?!"

Posted by: Dan at July 10, 2005 8:25 PM

This is the best question ever asked in the history of the universe.

Posted by: will at July 10, 2005 10:55 PM

They get take-out

Posted by: Mr. Obvious at July 11, 2005 5:55 AM

A vampire would not bite a zombie, as they need living blood.
A zombie would never be able to catch a vampire and if one even got close the vampire could cloud it's mind with his vampire powers.

Posted by: UglyBhamGuy at July 11, 2005 6:58 AM

Well, my theory is that they are insatiable. No matter how many brains they get, they still need more. It's about needing. If there are no brains around, they'd go somewhere where there are brains. If they had just had a nice meal of brains, they're not going to wait until they are ungry again before they get some more, they are just going to get some more when they can. They probably have some brain-radar or something, too.

So my theory is, a zombie who has not had a brain meal in a week has exactly the same need as a zombie who has just finished consuming your brain. Because the vampire-state is a state of needing.

As for human brains vs chimp brains, I would assume that human zombies would need human brains. Doggy zombies would probably prefer doggie brains, and chimpanzee zombies would probably like chimpanzee brains.

I just made all of that off the top of my head, but I'm probably right.

Posted by: Sheridan at July 11, 2005 8:10 AM

Oh yeah, and sometimes I think about how awesome it would be to have a zombie army at my command.

But this discussion has made me wonder if I did have a zombie army at my command, whether or not I would need to feed them. A zombie army, on first glance, might seem convenient to have, but how hard is it to obtain a stable brain-supply?

Posted by: Sheridan at July 11, 2005 8:26 AM

Well, I recently had a chance to interview a zombie personally, and he had this to say:

"Ughhhhhhhhhh..... ughhhhhhh.... nananana.... nananana"

He then proceeded to nibble on my ankles, as he had no legs. I guess he was of the George A. Romero Zombie breed, where he doesn't actually HAVE TO eat brains so much as he can sustain himself on human flesh in general, although I would imagine (which I tend to do a lot more than necessary) that the brain would be like the Filet Mignon of the Zombie Culinary world.

With no help from my zombie friend (and being pretty sure I had very little time left before I would become a zombie myself, thanks to his impulse control issues), I researched the zombie/brains stereotype.

I believe the "Zombie want braaaains" theory originated in the poorly-filmed-yet-still-entertaining movie series "Return of the Living Dead". These movies featured the stereotypical Brain-Craving Zombies that everyone assumes they are today.

My conclusion, after researching these movies as well as the George A. Romero Dead Quadrilogy is that... uh... the "Dead"... uhm... whu... Ughhhhh... ughhhhh...

Posted by: The Drew at July 11, 2005 9:02 AM

Good question, and I would suggest the following sites:


Posted by: Zombie at July 11, 2005 9:16 AM

Here's something for you, at our local McDonald's, the lit sign read:

walk-in interviews (date)
arrive alive

(the latter line was part of a don't drink and drive campaign, but...) ...I couldn't help but think "Resumes! Refereennnncessss! Braaaaaaaaiiiiiiinnnnnnsss!"

Posted by: Edam at July 11, 2005 10:11 AM

Maybe they have zombie temper tantrums, and run into a wall several times until they knock the smarts back into themselves, and get horrified at their zombiness and then get attacked by a group of militant humans who don't like no critters that be lookin' like humans but ain't, so they would fight back with human intelligence and then get shot in the head and rise again and be a normal zombie but stupider and then repeat the process, because the zombie curse/virus/whatsit/steve-don't-eat-it is still in them so they have to be a zombie again and a good question is do they even know what's happening to them i don't think so because they are just like a big stinky shambling animal kind of like a trucker pervert in a bar except that they want brains not ass.

Posted by: Draconid at July 11, 2005 10:56 AM

What about the "Serpent and the Rainbow" type zombies? Don't you guys feel bad for leaving them out you zombie racists?

The original zombie (as opposed to the Hollywood zombie) was not undead at all. It was merely a person who's free will was completely decimated. They walked the earth with no purpose or desires (not even yummy brains). Therefore, they would need to eat just like any other living thing. I suppose you could spoon feed them some brains, but I don't think they'd get all excited about it or anything.

Posted by: Low Gravity at July 11, 2005 11:30 AM

well, speaking from personal experience as a Zombie, not getting brains for 6 months is EXACTLY like a human eating nothing but mayonnaise for (insert ludicrous space of time). Disgusting.

Posted by: ungh at July 11, 2005 11:37 AM

Aging and Life Expectancy of Zombies

The great irony of zombie life is that even as they voraciously feed, they too are being fed upon. A zombie's body is like a big petri dish serving host to everything from bacteria and fungi to maggots and ants. The resulting state of putrefication means, as terrifying as a zombie may be to the eye, it actually commits far worse offenses to the nose.

A long-held, common misconception is that zombies are immortal. In fact, the vast majority of zombies live less than one year. It is possible to determine a zombie's age based on their external appearance; specifically, their level of decomposition, also known as necrotic degradation.

Stages I through III of necrotic degradation
* Stage I: the skin is mottled and covered with open sores.
* Stage II: the ears and nose are rotting away. Loss of fingers and toes.
* Stage III: large areas of exposed skull and bone, loss of limbs. Much of the teeth are gone, and one or both eyes fall out.

Posted by: ScionRacerXB at July 11, 2005 12:34 PM

they put monkey brains in vaccines in the sixties, so maybe that's why all post baby boomers are mindless automatons.

Posted by: Draconid at July 11, 2005 12:47 PM

Guys, this is a matter of asking any Asian or Mexican. I being Mexican have never had the pleasure of tasting brains (cow) which are normally eaten in tacos.
As you know, both Asians and Mexicans are known for entirely consuming anything that walks or crawls.
I would guess you could live entirely on brains if you had to.
I like these comments, because an attack of the undead is one of my two recurring nightmares. The other, being naked in front of a group of people (which has actually happened during an unfortunate towel incident).
If ever we find ourselves infested by the undead, I propose putting berets and scarves on them and shipping them to France, where initially they will blend in among the other stiffs, and after the easy surrender, and consumption of the frog population; our diplomatic relations with the new government will probably get better. Although they would probably leave Jacques Chirac as the head of the government since zombies don’t attack other zombies.

Posted by: ThaMex at July 11, 2005 12:56 PM

"decomposing to the point where they can't chase you down and eat your delicious delicious brains doesn't sound too far-fetched. So, I'd assume that, depending on the weather and temperature, they'd get to the "butyric fermentation" stage."

I'm betting that's what killed off the dinosaurs... They all turned into zombies, first slowely, then quickly as the virus spread and spread. They killed off all of the still-living dinosaurs, then just wandered around until they decomposed. Alligators escaped because of their inate ability to lie still and look like fallen trees. They also probably had more of a desire to keep going, believing that if they held on they'd eventually get to meet Steve Irwin.

Posted by: Laura at July 11, 2005 1:36 PM

I want to begin by (again) pointing out that what we saw in "28 Days Later" was not a zombie infestation, but rather a viral outbreak. That's why those inflicted with Rage could move very quickly, as well as be killed. All the same, they were scary as hell.

It seems to me that, logically, a zombie would fall apart after a certain amount of time has passed, brains or no brains. However, the concept of zombies isn't very logical, is it? So I fear all bets might be off.

I coincidentally the other night had a dream in which the dead started walking. Only I wasn't aware that it was a dream, and I was filled with this overwhelming "This can't be happening" feeling.


Posted by: The Swede at July 11, 2005 2:22 PM

In the year 2000.
(In the year 2000).

In the year 2000 the earth will be over run by flesh eating zombies, when all the flesh is gone, they will become dirt eating zombies, when all the dirt is gone, some will reluctantly eat at the Olive Garden.

-Conan O'Brien


Posted by: Josh at July 11, 2005 3:28 PM

hahahaha.... oh man, you just made my day!

Posted by: Joe at July 11, 2005 4:34 PM

well, I don't know if this was already stated (i'm too lazy to read nearly 90 comments), but in the movie 28 days later this was mentioned. The army "guys" were trying to keep one of their ex-friend now zombie guy, just to see how long it would live for. Eventually, (spoiler) the movie ended when they had no more food.

Posted by: DNordbak at July 11, 2005 5:21 PM

oh...i feel like a dumbass....

Posted by: DNordbak at July 11, 2005 5:22 PM

AN ARMADILLO HAS CRAWLED INTO MY EAR AND IS CONTROLLING M-euoansheeeeeaseaekeeeeeeeeeeee greetings fellow sneezelings, this is an armadillo, here to say that we are the true cause of zombifying. ever seen an armadillo? no, you say? well that's because we find unfortunate minions like this pathetic sneezeling who is hosting me and use them to our means HAHAHAHAHAHAHHAAH i don't know how we would survive without your human grease foods, which happen to be lethat to us in our native form. Brains you say, oh yes you mean those greasy snack treats contained in your craniums, yes, sometimes we lead our hosts to eat them so we can absorb the nourishing grease. farewell sneezelings. --EEERAAAAAAAAAGHHHHHHHHHCK-- WHAT-what happened? there was an armadillo, and, and--oh i need another beer...

Posted by: Draconid at July 11, 2005 5:45 PM

In the movie, Dawn of the dead(the new one) There was a lady that had a baby zombie! Think about it. If you have seen the movie Blade, you know that blade had both the nature of a vampire and his human nature. Why didnt this happen to the baby zombie? It could have been a baby born to fight the undead just like blade. Able to live among the humans, but always fighting the urge to eat Brains! Someone should make a new movie based on this. I would pay to watch it.

Posted by: ThaMex at July 12, 2005 1:50 PM

Does this question have anything to do with Cloud Cult's "Living On The Outside Of Your Skin"?

I'm a little worried for you Steve.

Posted by: Ben Requena at July 12, 2005 2:00 PM

Brain sandwiches (cow brains). I've heard they serve them at a restaraunt in Evansville, Indiana.


Posted by: felix at July 13, 2005 8:47 AM

you know too much, Now I can never return

Posted by: zombiejesus at July 13, 2005 2:01 PM

You know, my mum used to feed me brains when I was a baby. Lamb brains. I am told it makes excellent baby food because of the mushiness and high protein and such...

I don't recall liking it that much, though, although if you put some ketchup on it I don't think it would be too bad.

Posted by: Sheridan at July 13, 2005 4:10 PM

Armadillos carry leprosy, you know. And if armadillos are what's causing the whole zombie thing, well...that explains the rotting flesh.

Posted by: Martina at July 13, 2005 7:15 PM

All i know is to kill a zombie you gotta shoot his head. But beware, zombies are attracted to gun powder scent that's why military bases are often attacked first.

Posted by: eup at July 13, 2005 7:52 PM

oh and not to mention the neighbourhood police stations.

Posted by: eup at July 13, 2005 7:53 PM




Posted by: Serpentia at July 13, 2005 11:54 PM

First, I'd like to say, that I completely can't believe that anyone would think that the "Infected" in "28 Days Later" were zombies....

That being said.....I happen to know for a fact that Sandra Bullock is herself a zombie...


That is all...

Posted by: Serpentia at July 13, 2005 11:56 PM

Well Steve.... You know that "Brain-Like" fungus that's growing out of your tree that you've been waiting to communicate with???! That is what Zombies feed on when there is simply no human brains available... It provides them with a surprisingly nourishing meal, but just has the awkward side affect of hallucinations and dry mouth (not unlike a hit of acid)!

Posted by: SeLiNa at July 14, 2005 5:40 AM

They wouldn't die of starvation. They're usually sustained by their animating force ie. nuclear waste, spores from space, voodoo, goverment experiment etc.

Think of brains like salted nuts--a snack food. While they can live without brains, it just makes them cranky. So when they finally have access to the 'snack' they go nuts.

Posted by: Foolish at July 14, 2005 10:34 AM

Little known fact:
Most Zombies are more than willing to eat pussy equally with brains. Unfortunately most modern girls are simply padlocked at the knee when it comes to Zombie muff diving so they usually opt for brains.

Posted by: slutcartwheel at July 14, 2005 11:36 AM

The concept of zombies craving fresh brains is an extension of the very obvious zombie metaphor. Zombies are substituted for the typical man in the street, who is in fact a lifeless shell with no real mind of his own. He gets small solace by eating the brains of the "living", or converting that person into his dogma...Something like that

Posted by: Mr. B at July 14, 2005 12:11 PM

"Zombies are substituted for the typical man in the street, who is in fact a lifeless shell with no real mind of his own. He gets small solace by eating the brains of the "living", or converting that person into his dogma..."


at last the Republican Party is understandable!

Posted by: mrx at July 14, 2005 12:59 PM

Sorry, meant to sign that 'mre'.

Posted by: mre at July 14, 2005 1:05 PM

i have just read all of these damn zombie comments. I have to agree with Serpintina in saying WHY IN THE HOLY GODS NAME OF FUCK IS HE THE ONLY ONE WHO MENTIONED RESIDENT EVIL!?! no everyone is mentioning that damned 28 days later, which, as already mentioned, is NOT ABOUT ZOMBIES! Anyway i hate zombies movies & i am no expert but i have to say that after 6 months i would except then to turn into mush. Not because of lack of brains but because they are huge, human shaped, piles of trash decomposeing continusly.

Posted by: Tatie at July 14, 2005 2:54 PM

oooooook... so, jesus died and then later rose again to walk the earth (legend has it)... sooo.... jesus is a zombie? maybe ask jesus about the brains thing. i bet he'd be all "brains are delicious" then die of the human equivalent of mad cow. that's why you can't go and eat brains, not before you're undead. i initially had some sort of point relavent to the original post, but now i have lost not only my point, but the will to live. i'm gonna go die, rise again, and eat some delicious, delicious brains.

Posted by: Edgar J. Allenby at July 14, 2005 2:54 PM

I firmly believe that a zombie would slowly die of starvation from lack of brains or flesh, just as we non-zombies would from lack of food consumption. BUT, if a Zombie is dead, then how can the stomach digest the brains if the zombie brain is dead itself? So, on that note, I'd like to end this with an ol' little ditty that has been carried down from generation to generation in my family....and it goes a little something like this, "Brains, brains the magical fruit, the more you eat 'em, the more you t**t!"

Posted by: Big Sistah Stanky at July 14, 2005 7:13 PM

In MY family, WE have a song that has been passed down, and IT goes like THIS, "Brains, Brains, The Magical Fruit, The More You Eat Them, The more you shit your brains out." It's really not as deep as it sounds.

Posted by: Mrs. Nypples at July 14, 2005 7:24 PM

Zombies are awesome I can't wait until thats all that walks the earth

Posted by: Ellen at July 15, 2005 10:50 AM

I did some research on zombies and it said that they seemed to be a BIT sharper on sight, smell, and vision than us humans so it looks as though we are fucked if they start to walk around anyway so it doesnt really matter if they really need our brains to survive or not i dont think we can stop them from taking them

Posted by: Mouse at July 15, 2005 11:11 AM

Zombies come in many forms.. We must also remember their less fleshy brethren, the animated skeleton.

Modern day zombie-like people:
Not actually a zombie, but a human, or animal that's been infected, through some sort of virus or something. The zombies of 28 days later had not died, but became infected with some virus that made them really really mean and hungry.

Resident evil zombies were some crazy amalgam of Science and Pure Evil™. It seems that people became infected, then died, then came back as speedy killing machines. That and they were excessively gross.

Romero Zombies were slow moving and deadly, but dumb (until the new movie). Easily defeated with a bat or a semi truck, unless you were outnumbered and sloppy. This is a mix of toxins, if I remember.. maybe an asteroid.

Return of the living dead zombies were smarter, faster and scarier, though the movies were not nearly as scary as the original "Night of the Living Dead" or "Dawn of the Dead". Two masterpieces of zombie lore.

Most of the zombies above were generally tied to one main body part. If you chopped them up, or removed their brains, they died. Some of the scarier B movies have zombies who's every part chased after you and continued with it's own evil agenda.

And we can't forget the wonderfully gory Dead Alive.. A beautiful example of Zombie Fun.

Sigh.. I love the zombie genre. Scary as all hell if you think about it actually happening though. People and homes are generally not well prepared.

To answer the question that started the comments, I would have to say it depends upon how the zombie was created.

Toxins and science: zombies would rot and decay. sustenance might be derived from consuming flesh, but it's doubtful.

Pure Evil: Well pure evil isn't nice and it would probably have some magically evil way of preserving the dead flesh of the zombie just to spite the living.

Voodoo: These people are screwed because some voodoo magic practitioner has sapped them of their will and has taken control of them. Seems they don't need brains but they are still living humans that can eat regular food if force fed.

Posted by: israel at July 15, 2005 11:49 AM

Sorry for the blank comment.

Zombies won't starve to death the only hope is that the lizard brain decays to an inoperable point. As statedate by a well piece of meat above. THe meat ingested will surly not be completely digested. Maybe a bit until the acuids are neutrilized. All bod functions cease so digestion, respitory, circulatory. The eventual death of the lizard brain because it is encased in alot of fluid would be slow. I suggest no more than a month.

Posted by: Dragko at July 15, 2005 3:47 PM

Tatie...I'm so glad you agree with me...but I just wanted to mention that I am, in fact, a she....not a he.....Hence the "a" at the end of the name....LoL.

Okay, I digress...

So, the question I have is this....are the creatures in "Evil Dead" zombies....or demons? Because the line isn't exactly clear cut.

As for whether or not zombies would starve to death...well, I have to go with Piers Anthony on this one....they aren't dead or alive, but magically re-animated...and so, honestly I don't think the actual NEED for sustenance is relevant....

Posted by: Serpentia at July 15, 2005 11:26 PM

I think they eat toast.

Posted by: Steeevo at July 16, 2005 4:28 AM

They start wandering the streets in the dead of night (ironic and eery, that) and wait outside nightclubs, and follow the "second" friends home. You know who they are, right? The ......less attractive friend. If the they get lucky at the club, they are so grateful to the person who picked them up, they fuck their brains out.....and the zombie is ready for the free lunch.

This is why I will be safe when the zombies take over-- they revere and idolize the slightly-less-attractive who walk among you all.....

You've been warned.

Anyone want to go for a drink?


Posted by: Lisa at July 16, 2005 6:48 PM

Of course, all this discussion doesn't address the real tragedy of the once-noble zombie.

Posted by: Holli at July 16, 2005 9:35 PM

Why eat brains in the first place? What nutritional value comes from a brain that can't be found in a ham sandwich or a bowl of Honeycombs?

Posted by: Teddy at July 18, 2005 2:10 PM

.....or say just miracle whip and water?

Posted by: Lisa at July 18, 2005 5:18 PM

It depends on the variety of zombie.

Most zombies don't eat brains or if they do only as part of chowing down on human offal.

Its the Return of the Living Dead zombies that specifically eat brains and they break the Romero Rules (or make their own depending on how anal you want to be) all over the place as they also speak, are fast and headshots don't kill them.

Zombie meating eating is not (usually) for sustenance and is usually seen as being part of the vector for whatever is causing zombification.

The brain eating in RotLD is explained something along the lines of: being undead hurts like Hell and the electriicty in brians makes it hurt less. So they'd not starve they'd just get very very pissed off and given their speed and their resistance to headshots thats not wise - but then again neither is letting them eat your brains so it'd be a compromise I could live with.

Posted by: Emperor at July 18, 2005 9:27 PM

if zombies killed everything and took over the world would they learn to drive and become prdutive members of thier zombie society? if so, would there be zombie racism and zombie wars? and what would be the most desirable jobs for a zombie? im sure they wouldnt want to be firemen... and all medical would be out... zombie tv repairmen... would little children zombies watch saturday morning cartoons and eat sugar covered cardboard bits like humans? and speaking of that... do you think... zombies would go after people who play video games and have sorta long since melted thier brains with foremetioned sugar and cartoons?

Posted by: cartoons+sugar= at July 19, 2005 3:42 PM

oops... prdutive was sposed to be productive...

Posted by: cartoons+sugar= at July 19, 2005 3:43 PM

Zombies cant die. Theyre already dead. How do you kill a dead thing?????

Posted by: Rachel at July 19, 2005 5:24 PM

i believe they die and come back in a new state of zombie form, this form is poorer from there last form like its dropped a level like in a computer game, so.........they have to work there way up in being like the sonic with stars around him type zombie. but then again no they could just go around with no feeling and have no appitite just go around wanting to piss humans off by killing them cos theres nasty bastard
much love ben xx

Posted by: benny boy at July 23, 2005 6:08 AM

This isn't exactly rocket science people. Zombies will eat brains if said brains are available, but if not, say it's been a few days and they can't smell brains anywhere, then the zombies go to sleep, hibernate if you will, only to reawaken when brains are in proximity. That's why when you're walking through an abandoned graveyard, the zombie hands burst up out of the ground and grab you around the ankle. The zombies were sleeping, but then they smelled your brains. Sheesh. The reason zombies like brains is because they are full of all sorts of vitamins, and also because they are soft and extremely easy to chew.

Posted by: writingstatic at July 23, 2005 10:49 PM

they would be double zombies!!!

Posted by: cartoons + sugar= at July 25, 2005 3:14 PM

My husband and I had an intense discussion about zombies as we were falling asleep a few nights ago.

I'm sure everything we said was really enlightening, but since we were both only semi-concious at the time, we can't remember what we said.

Posted by: Erin at July 29, 2005 12:08 PM

OK, so it seems that zombies and vampires probably wouldn't bite each other, but what if zombies and werewolves did? They're pretty close, they can both reproduce by biting but not killing their victims...

Would they just become zombies on the full moon? Could you only stop them with a silver bullet, and would it have to be to the brain? Would you have to try to find a plant called "Zombiebane" to ward them off?

Posted by: Jen at August 8, 2005 5:41 PM

I think brains are just a treat.A treat thats on their mind 24/7.And well if you had brains in your head 24/7 it would make you crazy 4 them too.

Posted by: Alyssa at August 17, 2005 3:16 PM

They just eat the brains of trees (like the one that your tree grew)...

But considering the number of brainless people in the world, I'd say they are going to be in a heckload of trouble finding food in the future.

Posted by: yuene at August 21, 2005 5:29 AM

yes, yuene, does the "quality" of the brain count to a zombie? like, if they had consumed einstein's brain, a veritable filet mignon, if you will, on the cranial spectrum, would it tie them over for longer than consumption of, say britney or k-fed (cranial *potted meat*)?

is knowlege then, food in the literal sense? and if zombies thrive on the digested neurons of humans, then i suppose knowlege litterally is power.

Posted by: TheIdleReceptionist at August 25, 2005 1:59 PM