The Zombie of the Deep

I was gonna title this article “The Zombie of the High Seas,” but since we’re talking about a creature that lives in the depths of the ocean, thus negating the “high” part, I changed my mind. I also toyed with calling it “Davey Jones’ Pet Zombie” but I was afraid readers would only think of the PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN movies and become confused, thinking that I am suggesting the tentacle-faced character portrayed in the films by Bill Nighy had some domesticated zombie he led around on a leash like Michonne in THE WALKING DEAD. No, to clarify, the “zombie” I am speaking of is actually called the “Sea Squirt.” And it isn’t a reanimated dead ANYthing. What, then, earns it its nickname? The fact that it devours its OWN brain. Besides, wouldn’t you rather be called an “oceanic zombie” or some derivation thereof than a “sea squirt?”

To be fair, these creatures also eat their own tails, eyes, and rudimentary backbones; once they attach themselves in place they will no longer need these. It exists afterward, like any true zombie, only to feed. It CAN squirt you in the eye if you mess with it—hence its more common name—so it’s not defenseless. And these animals are actually quite beautiful, unlike most true zombies, who don’t hold up too well over time.