The Last Christmas
by Gerry Duggan, Brian Posehn, Rick Remender
(Image, 2006)

It was the death of Mrs. Claus that really pushed him over the edge.

Sure, the nuclear apocalypse was hard to take. And the mutations that followed, turning a majority of the surviving humans into zombified ghouls, was even harder. But Santa Claus continued spreading Christmas cheer with a wink and a smile as long as there were good boys and girls in the world.

But then human marauders raid the North Pole one Christmas, leaving dead elves, reindeer and, yes, Mrs. Claus in their bloody wake. Santa himself takes a bullet to the head, but Santa doesn't die -- because too many children still believe in him. Years pass, and the grieving man in red tries to drink himself to death, along with various other, more violent attempts, but nothing works ... and then he discovers that one boy still remembers the magic of Christmas and thus is keeping Santa alive. So Santa prepares to take the only reasonable course of action left to him -- go kill the boy so he can finally commit jolly old suicide and rest in piece.

Or else he just might end up kicking some zombie ass. You'll have to read for yourself to find out.

The Last Christmas is certainly not your usual sort of holiday romp. And I suspect Gerry Duggan, Brian Posehn and Rick Remender -- the creative team behind it -- got a whole lot of coal in their stockings when they were young. But they get a glass of eggnog on me for this holly jolly zombie tale that puts a whole new twist on ho ho ... whoa.

review by
Tom Knapp

1 November 2008

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