Meet Scratch, Our Resident Zombie!
Scratch is our resident zombie. With unnaturally good speaking and typing abilities, he’s also one of the contributors to the blog, but unfortunately, his inability to comprehend sentence structure and full words leaves the interpretation of his incessant mumbling about being ‘hungry’, ‘itchy’, or ‘sad’ up to the prejudices of our editor in chief.
Scratch was found knee-deep in a swamp by an extremely naive American boy, luckily instead of executing him on the spot (like I would have done), he brought the poor bastard to our science department in the vain hope that we could cure him. Well, unfortunately we couldn’t, so instead we decided to run a metric crap tonne of tests on the bugger, to find out the best way to kill a zombie, so this, ladies and gents, is your own detailed guide to the zombie anatomy that wasn’t written by the CDC!
First off, zombies do not have special powers! Those of you who think zombies have the ability to charge through walls or jump up two tiered buildings in one leap, have been playing far too many Dead Island games.
The simple fact is that the zombie’s physical abilities are going to be the same or weaker than they were when they were a human. You do not become a zombie and suddenly have the ability to charge through walls.
Trust me on this, Scratch can barely put one foot in front of the other, let alone scale a building.
Whether zombies use their eyes to distinguish a human from any other zombie is still up for debate. Some argue that although the eyes would still be able to function for a while before decomposition fully engulfed them. It is unlikely that the zombies limited brain power would be able to calculate the thousands of signals that our eyes send to our brain, and interpret them correctly in order to distinguish human from zombie.
Unfortunately the ophthalmologist (eye doctor) refused to see Scratch, as that would require getting within biting range of him; he also smells like a manure factory on fire.
As we age our brain learns to recognize certain characteristics that help us identify objects and people more easily, for example we would quite easily recognize the slouch and slow pace of a zombie with our eyes, easily compared to the brisker more fluid motions of a human. However, Scratch cannot do this, with death his brain all but shut down before the frontal lobe reanimated, and therefore his ability to process information like he did when he was a human is lost, therefore although his pupils follow you with ferocious intensity, it is doubtful that he would be able to distinguish a human from a zombie if he was reliant on his eye sight alone.
Speaking purely about human anatomy, the ear canal is much more durable than the squishy tissue in and behind the eye, due to its connection through taught muscle fabrics to the ear drum and connecting bones. Therefore it is likely that due to the superior sturdiness of this structure, that the zombie would become far more reliant on this sense over time.
This is reinforced by a study carried out by our top scientists. When we played a zombie moan at one side of the room, Scratch immediately heard it and turned to meander in that direction, this was carried out on numerous occasions, and each time Scratch turned to investigate the source of the moan.
This also hints that zombies, although not co-operative in their nature, recognise that a zombies grunt or moan means a possible food source, and therefore hearing must be considered one of the zombie’s greatest sensory features.
Humans are incredibly sight oriented creatures; zombies on the other hand are far more diverse in their reliance on each sense. For example, due to the eyes limited capability in relation to the zombie’s brain power, it is logical to think that they would use a far more instinctual sense, for example smell.
Predators in the wilds around the world are more often than not, equipped with an incredible sense of smell, such as wolves who can track prey using smell alone for miles and miles. Therefore if we continue this hypothesis and apply it to a zombie such as Scratch, whom we know is an instinct level uni-functional feeding bot, it is logical that Scratch would rely on his instinctual sense of smell over other, possibly fading senses.
This was first noted when one of our little lab monkeys noted that Scratch always seemed to stir just before we brought in some meat for him, as if he could smell it before he had even laid eyes on it. Therefore take extra care to stay downwind of any zombies you encounter!
Zombies love meat, especially the human kind! Scratch has told us as much through his joyous moans and groans each time we deliver him some fresh flesh! One notable trait of zombies is that despite their stomach and intestines remaining non-functional after reanimation, this has never halted their ability to eat, some zombies have feasted until their intestines and stomachs have burst open!
Therefore it is arguable that the purpose of feasting on flesh is not in order to gain sustenance from the meal, as their digestive tracts aren’t working, they would gain no nutritional value from it. Therefore it is still up for debate as to why zombies love a human kebab, Scratch has been less than helpful on this subject.
If you have a theory as to why Scratch loves the taste of flesh, write in the comments below!
This is the zombie’s greatest advantage over a human, as zombies have no physical sensations throughout their body, the ability to feel pain is rendered void, and this is why zombies are so relentless in battle, because they do not feel the rip of bullets or the sting of blades. Therefore we can say that despite our best efforts in stabbing, shooting and scything away at Scratch, the poor bastard wasn’t harmed.
The lack of pain throughout their bodies also allows them to be on the move constantly, and as they feel no pain and are completely independent from oxygen, they are considered superior to humans.
One scientist noted the similarities between the tortoise and the hare, where the hare (human) runs and runs and runs, but must rest, yet the tortoise (zombie) slowly meanders after the hare (human) eventually catching up and eating the flesh of its bones… don’t worry, this scientist has now been sacked for ruining a perfectly good children’s story.
Remember to check out Episode 4 of The Zombie POD where we discuss the subjects in this article!