If creators could get royalties from other people who follow in their footsteps, The Walking Dead‘s Robert Kirkman would be in the running for the richest man in the galaxy. Not only did his landmark comic series usher in a new wave of indie horror comics, but its transfer to the small screen for A&E has turned “the zombie” into one of the most ubiquitous characters in fiction. One of the latest examples of this phe-zom-enon (a term I’m going to copyright) is Veronica Mars creator Rob Thomas’ take on the popular DC/Vertigo comic iZOMBIE, which ended its run last August. News of the adaptation came out a few months ago, and now the CW is confirming that Thomas’ vision is obviously top quality, as they’ve confirmed a pilot order.
Of course, this doesn’t necessarily mean the network will want a full season, but the CW has been snatching up all kinds of genre properties that they can stick a beautiful cast into, which I think is a contract thing. And while iZOMBIE will no doubt feature loads of corpses, its central characters could easily be portrayed by good-looking youths who aren’t afraid to act a little wild.
iZOMBIE centers on Gwen, a former medical student-turned-zombie who gets a job as a gravedigger to gain easy access to a never-ending stream of brains for her to eat. This pretty gross act not only sates her hunger, but allows her access to the memories of the brains’ owners, and she achieves a kind of penance by taking care of the things that the people left behind. When one of these brains alerts her to something potentially life/death-changing, she teams up with a fun ghost from the 1960s, a were-dog, some vampires, and other otherworldly beings to remove any and all threats standing in her way.
Thomas will be writing the pilot with Diane Ruggiero, with whom he worked both on the Veronica Mars series and the upcoming feature. The often=funny cult mystery drama had its third and final season on the CW after the network merged with the WB, and Thomas will also be creating a short Veronica Mars web series that the CW will host. iZOMBIE is just as full of humor as brainy mysteries, so it’ll be severely disappointing if this talented duo don’t get a full season for this story.
No director or timetable has been laid out for when the pilot will be filmed, but there are more than enough zombie-related shows coming up on all kinds of channels. NBC has Babylon Fields coming, A&E is double-dipping in adapting hit french zombie drama The Returned (which the Sundance Channel is airing), and ABC is developing Resurrection, based on the Jason Mott novel. Meanwhile, BBC America will be airing the second season of the BBC series In the Flesh. But none of those are also part-crime/part-medical dramas, so it’s iZOMBIE by a decomposing nose.