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Specimen 425

Zombie Lab
by yo go re

See? We told you this Zombie Lab line had some zombies in it!

Excerpt from the official report: "Continuing the work from Specimen 424, Specimen 425 was administered serum Z31 prior to exposure to the artificial zombie virus. As serum Z31 slowed - but did not prevent - Specimen 424's full conversion into a zombie, our theory was that while it may not act as a cure, but it could have use as a preventative vaccine. Regrettably, early administration has not stopped the progression of Specimen 425's disease, though the rate remains slowed. This may be a step toward a workable solution. Specimen 425 will be moved to storage until the next cleaning day."

In the Zombie Lab story, researchers purposely infect recently deceased people with zombism in an effort to find a cure. Unless they're killing these people themselves, that means being an organ donor in this world is a lot wilder than it is in ours! Although, side note: there's a great book called Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers, which discusses what happens to our bodies when we die. It sounds macabre, and it can be a little gross in some parts, but it's truly a great read and shows that there's much more to donating your body to science than simple transplants. Really, everyone should be an organ donor - it's just the right thing to do (even if the chances that it means you'll get turned into a zombie are slim).

Specimen 425 definitely seems to be decaying rapidly. Her left cheek is missing, and her nose is entirely gone. It's not really clear whether that all happened pre- or post-infection, though we can assume she wasn't attacked by an actual zombie, or she'd have changed in an hour, not in 24. There are various other cuts on her face, and her eyes are bloody red.

Fittingly, since Specimen 425 is the subject of a medical experiment, she's wearing a teal hospital gown. It's tattered along the lower edge, and smeared with blood. It's a single piece of rather sturdy PVC, and doesn't feature any snaps to make it easier to get on or off - if you want to see the body beneath, you'll have to pop the arms out of their sockets and slide the whole thing up over her head. For that matter, better take the head off, too. Makes everything easier.

Beneath the robe is the plain female V-HACKS body, with a new torso that's been sculpted with a bra. Normally, one wouldn't wear underwear beneath a hospital gown, especially when one is dead, but let's assume that was just a choice on the part of the toymakers to keep this zombie apocalypse rated PG-13 and not R. The body is a grayish tan with fierce blue veins running all over, and her feet and shins are bloody - it stops right where the gown covers her, cleverly enough! There's also a red smear on her stomach that isn't matched by anything on the gown, suggesting it had to come from within, not from without.

The articulation does get limited by the dress: there's going to be no doing big high kicks for Specimen 425. Were you planning to have your hospital zombie do big high kicks? Or were you planning to have her shuffle around? Be honest, now. All the joints are still there, it's just the hips that are restricted.

Other than the bloody drape, Specimen 425 has a few accessories we'll be seeing a lot of: a severed arm (for a snack), and two alternate stomachs; remember, the HACKS body is modular and can be pulled apart, so that's not as weird a statement as you might think. You can pop the upper torso off the body, and then you have your choice of whether to A) remove the abdomen piece from the toy, replace it with one that has entrails hanging out, and pop the chest back on, or B) cap the baljoint with a section of meat that has a section of spine hanging from it, like she's been bisected. Of course, the package also contains the usual figure stand and the art card depicting the character.

The humans were nice, but now we're starting to see how the zombies are going to work in this line. There's not a ton of decay on this one, at least, but her new head and the paint choices really sell the look.

-- 10/19/18

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