My friends, I give you: the trailer for the movie Suck:
Tip of the hat to Nunc Scio
In response to his personal dislike of the vampire genre (though I agree with him that zombies are cool), vampires still work if you don’t go the cliched route of taboo sexuality. Kick Twilight into the dustbin of history and go check out Buffy: the Vampire Slayer again. Leaving aside the relationships that Buffy had (and abandoned) with Angel and Spike, vampires here work as a metaphor for the bad boy, the rebel, the James Dean of the undead world. It’s no accident that Spike wears long leather coats. And it would seem that Suck is following the same route. Divorced from vampyrism’s sexual escapades — or even poking fun at it — the genre really takes off, in my opinion.
But it is inherently flexible. The zombies took the element of a supernatural force sucking you in and making you one of them, and ran with it. It’s always been there. And it’s instructive that when people describe the Borg or the Cybermen, and their tendencies to consume populations, making people be like them, their methods are described as vampiric, rather than zomberific.
Zombies are different enough that they can be considered a genre of their own (which makes George Romero one of the only people of the last century to have invented an entire fictional trope; how’s that for a feather in your cap), but to me Zombie-ism is a subset of old Vampirism.