250px-S618 Spike

Spike, a vampire, is technically dead but appears alive.

"Undead", or Living Dead, was a term used to refer to beings whose bodies were technically dead, but still existed on a physical plane as if they were alive.


To achieve this state, an individual would have to be brought back from the dead or killed in a manner that allowed them to be "reborn". Magic was often involved. Generally speaking, undead beings had some alteration to or lack of a being's form or faculty.

The standards of living for the undead are generally different; for example, vampires and zompires gained the desire and need to feed on mammalian blood. Furthermore, they lost their need to breathe, and their hearts ceased beating. Vampires retained their core personalities and ability to think and make decisions (though the impact of this was lessened greatly by the loss of their souls).

Zombies, on the other hand, usually lost their conscious mental capabilities and essentially became walking corpses, however, some retained their mind and personality. Ghosts were the souls of once-living people who were stuck on earth. They were incorporeal, but possessed the minds of the people they once were, such as Dennis Pearson and Matthias Pavayne.

Buffy Summers was not considered undead after her resurrection by witch Willow Rosenberg because she returned as a living person by means of a unique spell.

Individual Cases

  • An Incan Mummy Princess who was ritually killed and mummified returned to life because of a cursed seal and became a living girl. After she stopped feeding on the life forces of others, she reverted to a mummy and died.
  • Warren Mears was brought back as a skinless being after being skinned alive, who could only be kept alive with magic and the end of which led to his second death. This did not apply to vampires, but did prevent them from reproducing, instead forming brainless "zompires" in their place.
  • Wolfram & Hart had a standard perpetuity clause in their contracts which allowed their employees to remain in the firm after death as undead, immortal beings with the signs of their death still visible.
  • Chris Epps brought back his brother Daryl through a scientific procedure which left him in a Frankenstein's Monster-like state.
  • The 314 Project was a military operation aimed at creating a race of Bio-mechanical demonoids, where dead soldiers would be scientifically reanimated with cybernetic enhancements and demonic body parts.
  • Adam, the very first out of the only two Bio-mechanical demonoids to exist, reanimated Professor Maggie Walsh and Doctor Francis Angleman as rotting, visibly dead servants.
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