Thursday, September 25, 2008


It's that time of year when everyone's pressing to make their zombie-end-of-the-world movies hit theaters before Halloween. And, let's face it, there's nothing better than zombie flicks on election years because, in the end, they're all just metaphors for partisanship. That's all there is to 'em. You can thank Mr. Romero for that bleak outlook on humanity--specifically Americanism. Of course, we can debate it if you want.

There's just something about a good zombie flick that just really does it. Something about the notion of being stranded and forced to fight your way out of a swarm of blood-thirsty undead that might've used to be your awesome neighbor or (gasp!) spouse! Out t'get ya!
It's the end of the world and hell got a lil' overcrowded and now they're walking the earth. That's a storyline. And if that's not a metaphor for the prison system, I don't know what is! Now, sit back and watch the fun begin!
The great thing about zombie movies is they essentially prey on the very fear that humanity can turn against you and, most popularly, overrun you and eat you alive and, it's like a dog marking his territory, you become them. And, then, the only way to escape them is to kill them or kill yourself which is, really, the very worst fear fully exposed in a horror movie. You can't reason with them. Sure, you might be able to outrun them for a night, but a month!? They're gonna get you. They're gonna eat you. Something so formulaic, but so functional about the zombie story. How do you kill something that's already dead? Sure, you might figure out to put a hole in Jason or Freddy's head, but how do you stop an army with a billy club? What if you were one and they were a million. Brilliant.
I have my favorites and they seem to be everchanging. It doesn't really matter, you say "zombie," and I'm there. My lovely wife thinks they're the most moronic form of entertainment and that's fine--I think the same thing about romantic comedies and, let's face it, they really fill the same need in both of us. Sometimes I feel like being a stupid man and she feels like being a mindless woman. Jacko, realizing my love for the genre, bought me last Christmas The Zombie Survival Guide.
I don't really mind saying that it's clearly the most accomplished piece of literature on the marketplace right now. Here's a taste:


No one can dispute the obvious advantage of an escape on horseback. Fueling from a gas station becomes irrelevant. Extra supplies are reduced to feed, blanked and some additional medicine. Terrain options increase, as four hooves don't need a road. Before luxury of automobiles, people traveled quite efficiently on these fast, sturdy animals. Before saddling up and hitting the trail, however, keep in mind simple warnings. As anyone who's even ridden a pony as a child will agree, horseback riding requires skill. Forget how easy it looks in Westerns. The skills needed to ride and care for horses are difficult to master. Unless you already know how, don't think you can learn on the go. Another drawback, specific to dealing with zombies, is that horses are notoriously spooked by the undead. Even the scent of a zombie, carried by a wind and maybe miles from the source, will be enough to send most horses into hysterics. This could be advantageous early-warning system to an extremely experienced rider, one who knows how to control his animal. For most, however, the end result could be a catapult toss to the ground, injuries and all. The horse, at that moment, would not only leave its hapless rider stranded, but it's frantic neighing would also serve to alert nearby zombies."

Do the math, kid. It's Friday. Tech's got the weekend off. The Lions tomorrow night. Gotta find a way in.


sarahsmile3 said...

My favorite is Night of the Living dead. It literally scared the piss out of me when I was a kid. It still scares me, though I am able to hold my water.
As a woman, I was born without the romantic comedy gene. Bridget Jones would be much more entertaining if she were eating brains.

scumdog steev said...

Have you read World War Z? Same author as the Survival Guide, but it's a novel about the aftermath of the zombie war. Good stuff, yo.