Akin to Adult Swim shows like Archer and Ugly Americans, The Life and Times of Elvis the Zombie is a dark comedy series about a foul mouthed and undead manic depressive guy whose main goal in his afterlife is to live better than he did before he died the first time around. He was a janitor before he became a zombie in a freak accident at the chemical company he worked for, and is now dead set (sorry, couldn’t resist) on bringing the company, TPC or The Parent Company, to justice for what they did to him. This is made difficult due to the fact that TPC pays him a monthly stipend in exchange for allowing them to “treat” his “condition”, which the CEO is actually using to gain information about Elvis’ zombified state. Due to Elvis’ location and living situation, the company cannot harm him so they use their immense wealth to keep tabs on him for their diabolical needs. The other maintenance staff they simply spirited away and Elvis has been searching for them in vein. He is determined to find out what happened to the other people TPC hurt. Elvis refuses to give up.
This is a darkly humorous episodic series of screenplays with an overarching story that sees Elvis go through many changes in order to reinvent himself. In his misguided attempt to live his afterlife and be a successful somebody, he becomes a stand-up comedian, a support group counselor and even a self-titled super hero… who has no powers. Elvis unlocks the door to our afterlife in a way that will both enthrall you as well as make you laugh. Elvis’ point of view as an undead American gives us a glimpse into our own feelings about the fact that death will reach out and touch us all. In season two’s close, Elvis even gets a past regression therapy from his amateurish friend and group counselor, the Shrink in an attempt to stow his anxiety about his thoughts on dying a second time. There are many surprises to the places Elvis’ mind wanders in this hilarious, “doom and gloom” series.
Part of Elvis’ (and the show’s) charm is none of the titles he thrusts upon his shoulders truly fits Elvis and he is constantly failing – oftentimes very painfully – because he isn’t much good at being anything but himself, an undead ex-janitor collecting a monthly check he no longer has to work for from a job he no longer has to work at. This series isn’t really about where Elvis ends up or the inner peace he may or may not find. His journey getting to these peaceful moments within himself is both harrowing and hilarious and that is what people have said makes them enjoy reading The Life and Times of Elvis the Zombie episodes so much. Not only do you care about what happens to Elvis and want him to succeed, he always fails in a way that makes you feel guilty for laughing so hard.