Though most of the movies in the series are pretty bad, Return of the Living Dead is a pretty influential zombie flick from the 80’s. It not only gave us talkers, and fast moving zombies like we had never seen before, it also gave us brain eaters.
As I mentioned in my post of flesh eaters, all zombies eat people and all zombies eat flesh. The zombies in Return of the Living Dead however were the first to specifically go after people for their brains. Keep an eye out though because they don’t just eat brains. They eat flesh just like all other zombies, though they will go after the brain as soon as possible. It was a real shock to hear these previously groany nasties suddenly start talking. And it was all the more horrifying that the one thing they kept saying was how much they want to eat us!
Why the brain should be eaten by zombies is a bit of a mystery though. During the movie one of the creatures says that it eases the pain of being dead, that she can feel herself rot. There is nothing biologically or chemically accurate about the consumption of brains easing pain and seems to be a psychological desire. In Romero’s Day of the Dead it’s pointed out that even though a zombies stomach and guts were removed it still tried to feed. So this need to feed whether on flesh or on brains seems to be purely in the creatures heads. (How appropriate.)
It does seem a bit odd though that the zombies would even be able to get at the brain. It’s harder than it seems though they seem to be really good at biting no matter the state of decay.