Army Of The Dead is a wholly new take on the traditional “undead” mythos, and the trailer has already proven that the film is going to offer the viewers something different than regularly expected from a zombie film. The Army of the Dead trailer, while featuring an ensemble and astonishing cast, also featured the villains, the zombies. But, they arent’ the usual walking corpses looking for meat to eat. These zombies live as a colony and seem to have formed a “society”. Dubbing these new species of zombies as Alphas, producers Deborah Snyder and Wesley Coller shed some light on their inception in Zack Snyder’s Dead Universe.
Deborah Snyder explained that the idea behind Army of the Dead was to introduce two different variants of zombies species. There are of course the senseless shamblers, as Deborah calls them; the meat-hungry undead corpses. And then there are alphas. From what the producers explained, it looks like that these alphas would be significant to the future entries of the franchise.
On the possible origin of these alpha species of zombies, Deborah Snyder said, “So the idea that this, whether he’s genetically engineered or he has part alien in him, but Zeus escapes from Area 51 and he’s like our alpha, he’s the king daddy, he starts the outbreak. When he bites you, we get other alphas. But if they bite you, it gets weaker and weaker and we get shamblers.”
Deborah’s explanation reflects Game of Thrones’ White Walkers, the ice-zombies commanded by a small group of Wights, who, in turn, answer to the Night King. If the king bites someone, a new alpha (Wight) is created, whereas, a shambler (Walkers) will create the mad corpses like their own.
“There is an elevated Consciousness, there’s some type of awareness we like to say that they are much like a wolf pack, so they’re not talking, they’re not communicating on that obvious of a level, but there’s a much more elevated threat in that way.”
Producer Coller explained how these alphas, within the film, will be introduced as mythological creatures of horror and death. For the world outside the zombified Vegas, people believe them to be myths. But, as the lead characters dive deep into their territory, the truth of their existence is revealed. Coller explained more.
This means these zombies have heightened senses and intellect, and the sequence where we see two of these alphas sharing affection with each other implies that they are emotionally drained as well, which further makes them a greater threat.
What’s interesting here is Deborah’s theory about alphas’ inception from Area 51. Area 51 is a military facility, which is situated in the Nevada Test and Training Range of the US Air Force. The Area 51 myth, mostly inferred from the location’s depiction in the films, suggests that the facility is used for alien bio-technical research and that the facility may house some extraterrestrial beings. Army Of The Dead trailer also hinted at a possible military subplot, which can head back to this theory suggested by Deborah Snyder.
However, there is a little possibility that the film will reveal these zombies’ origin as Zack Snyder has already planned for a prequel titled Army Of Thieves, which will depict the story set during the initial days of the zombie outbreak. But, since the prequel will feature Matthias Schweighöfer reprising his role as Ludwig Dieter from Army Of The Dead, his character might shed some light on the origin details before we get a whole new film about it.
The zombie-themed pop-culture entries have been quite famous for a while, thanks to the long-running television series The Walking Dead and its prequel. Notably, Zack Snyder’s debut feature film was also a zombie-thriller Dawn Of The Dead. Going in a unique direction from traditional slasher-style zombie films, Zack Snyder has created this thesis he calls Zombie Bible for his Dead Universe comprising of variant approaches concerning the “origins and mechanics” of the undead species. It’s a matter of time that Zack comes up with a new crazy idea to take this thesis ahead in new visual formats and give us some exciting zombie stories.
Netflix has already sanctioned an anime-styled series called Army Of The Dead: Lost Vegas besides the original film and its prequel, which will focus on the origins of Dave Bautista’s character and will feature the most of the original cast returning to voice their respective characters. So, Netflix has already put a lot of faith in Zack Snyder. Army Of The Dead will stream on Netflix on May 21st. This news originated at ScreenRant.