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Zombie man mowing lawn while zombie wife relaxes

Undead or Zombie? What’s the Difference?

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What is a Zombie?

Like riding a bike, tying shoes, or learning how to drive, every person should be able to discern the difference between undead and zombies. This vital information could save a life in dire circumstances. Most importantly, one should know the basic differences between the two in order to avoid being the next meal for a hungry zombie. A zombie is officially defined as “a dead person that is brought back to life through a curse (voodoo, necromancy) or a mutation and has recovered some vital functions like movement.” As seen throughout history, viruses are also very common for bringing zombies into existence. Undead, in contrast, are typically creatures of the supernatural, such as ghosts or vampires. Undead retain more shreds of their humanity and often possess increased levels of intelligence.

As mentioned before, zombies can be created through exposure to a virus, mutation, or a curse such as voodoo or necromancy. These reanimated corpses often have no more intelligence or discernment than an insatiable need for human flesh. Their ambulatory capabilities can range from very slow and lurching rotted specimens to fast and unpredictable virus-borne terrors. This increases the danger factor for humans, especially for those who tend to run more slowly than others. This danger is amplified, as a zombie bite is often sufficient to turn the victim into a zombie as well. As a result, even if one manages to escape the horrendous fate of being a zombie’s dinner, he or she could still fall prey to zombie-ism. Is this fate worse than being a welcomed meal? Research thus far has been inconclusive, as most test subjects are uncooperative and have devoured their researchers.

What is Undead?

Slightly different from zombies are undead, typically perceived as creatures of myth or superstition. Undead can describe a broad range of creatures, both corporeal and incorporeal. Corporeal creatures, like vampires, retain their human bodies even in death. Incorporeal creatures, like ghosts, still possess a sense of their humanity but have lost all physical form. Unlike zombies, undead are usually not driven by an all-consuming desire for flesh, and instead pursue goals such as revenge on all humanity for those who have wronged them. In the case of vampires, they retain many aspects of their humanity, both physical and intellectual. Many can even feel physical pain as they could when they were human, unlike zombies who feel and think nothing.

While it is possible to reason with ghosts, vampires, and other undead to avoid an untimely fate, there is no reasoning with zombies. By being aware of the differences in these creatures, one can avoid his or her brains being the main course and dessert for an ever-hungry zombie.

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