‘Diary of a Wimpy Kid’ vs. ‘Diary of a Zombie Kid’


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In the first corner, in the blue book jacket: the wildly successful ‘Diary of a Wimpy Kid’ series by Jeff Kinney. In the opposite corner, ‘Diary of a Zombie Kid’ in splatter-red.

The second is meant to be a parody of the popular children’s books, but according to lawyers for ‘Wimpy Kid’ creator Kinney, it’s not funny: It’s trademark and copyright infringement. A suit was filed Tuesday in Massachusetts, Publishers Weekly reports:


In the filing, Wimpy Kid noted that since the publication of the first book in April 2007 it has rapidly become a “cultural phenomenon,” selling more than 52 million copies, with merchandising that includes T-shirts, hats, action figures, swimwear, and board games. It calls Diary of a Zombie Kid “a counterfeit, copy, and/or colorable imitation.” Abrams, which has published all six books in the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series, declined to comment on the lawsuit. At press time, PW was unable to reach Joe Dunn, publisher of Antarctic Press in San Antonio, Tex. [which published ‘Diary of a Zombie Kid’], or Antarctic’s counsel, copyright attorney William E. Maguire.

The success of the ‘Wimpy Kid’ series has rubbed off on ‘Zombie Kid,’ which was selling at a respectable No. 50 spot on Amazon’s comics and graphic novels bestseller list earlier this week.

Zombies have been treading their leaden steps into literature since Seth Grahame-Smith’s surprise 2009 hit, ‘Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.’ The brain-hungry undead might have seemed an odd match for Jane Austen, but there was one thing that made them a perfect fit: Austen’s work is in the public domain. Anyone can remake, retool or mash up ‘Pride and Prejudice,’ however, whenever they like.

Jeff Kinney’s work? Not so much.

As of this writing, a second ‘Zombie Kid’ book is slated to be released in January.


Interview: Jeff Kinney on his movie-bound ‘Wimpy Kid’

‘Pride and Prejudice and Zombies’ -- there’s an app for that


Seth Grahame-Smith discusses ‘Pride and Prejudice and Zombies’

-- Carolyn Kellogg

Images: Left, Jeff Kinney’s ‘Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Cabin Fever.’ Credit: Amulet Books. Right, ‘Diary of a Zombie Kid.’ Credit: Antarctic Press