Sunday, October 21, 2012

On "The Walking Dead"

Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

There's a lot of hype right now about AMC's "The Walking Dead". As much as I like zombies, I saw my very first episode only today, believe it or not, which was the first episode of the new season. You can watch it right now here but I suggest you do it now since it's only streaming on AMC's website for a limited time and that could be until midnight tonight for all we know. So if you do, come back here after it's done and let me know what you think in the comments box. As for myself, it really didn't impress me. Now I won't get cocky about it thinking I know the whole series because I've only seen one episode. When I saw it I didn't see much difference in "Night of the Living Dead", the mother of all zombie movies as we know them today. Nor did it seem much different than any of the "Living Dead" knock offs. Okay, it's post-apocalyptic, which almost all of today's zombie storylines are. "Night of the Living Dead" was apocalyptic and so takes place at the beginning of the zombie outbreak. But then the British film "28 Days Later" was also post-apocalyptic.

Now, at least from what I saw from the summary on the show's website the twist to the entire storyline is that the zombie outbreak causes people to question whether the living aren't much less zombie than the walking dead. It's just that I didn't see that idea coming into play in Season 3's premiere episode. I didn't see any indication of connection to that idea either. Now I can't say that none of the episodes of the first two seasons did not play out that idea since I haven't seen any of them, but I assume at least some of them did. I'll have to watch the first season.

The episode I watched today struck me as made simply to make an audience wonder how many zombies an individual character will slay. The suspense scenes were pretty old such as showing the zombie hunters searching through the blacked out penitentiary not knowing where a zombie might jump out from. When one would jump out it was too easy for the viewer to see it coming before hand.

Now as far as plot goes, the best part I thought was the one that took the biggest twist. The pregnant mom is talking with the old man about her concern for her child turning out to have been infected by the zombie plague. That's the only part that made me want to speculate and sympathize with any of the characters which, at least in this episode, I couldn't do with any of them because their development didn't show enough.

The show is based on an Image comic book. I've only thumbed through a few issues and some looked okay, but I can't say a whole lot since I haven't actually read any of them. But no kidding, zombies are hot right now probably even hotter than vampires (feel free to correct me, vampire fans, if I'm wrong) and so I've made sure not to miss the zombie craze. That's why back in the summer I picked up a copy of a graphic novel of another zombie series, "i Zombie: Dead to the World". It's by Chris Roberson and Michael Allred, published by Vertigo. It's from the "i Zombie" monthly comic book series. Michael Allred does some really great art in it like he did in his "Mad Man" series which had a kind of "I Was a Teenage Frankenstein" super hero storyline. He has a four-colour, '60s retro style in his work, yet Roberson gives a trendy plot. The plot: a female zombie must eat the brains of recently deceased humans in order to avoid rotting and to keep her human consciousness. Along with this, the brains she eats enable her to see the past thoughts of the people they once belonged to. In this graphic novel in particular she witnesses a murder through one of these thoughts and she and her fellow monster friends, a were-terrier and a ghost from the '60s, must track down the murderer. Both the series' storyline and the book's are really good and take twists on the zombie story like no other zombie story has before.

If you like zombies like I do and if you purchase my book, "The Fool's Illusion", when it comes out (hopefully end of next month), you'll get a couple of zombie-like stories in there. I say "zombie-like" because some of the undead in these stories are not quite zombies but are closer to ghouls since, unlike zombies, they have consciences. But that can be debatable perhaps. Let me know what you think defines a zombie if you'd like. I'm always interested in your comments.

Until next time, take scare.

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  1. i saw a few minutes. i also didnt see a difference between it and night of the living dead. what a premise.... the living and dead are equal?

    1. Well, it appears that the show is trying to say that there's similarities between the (un)dead and the living, probably at a social level: the zombies mindlessly kill and eat people, while people (living) are in a sense killing and eating each other such as through stealing and cheating whether at the individual level or the institutional level (e.g. companies ripping off their clients/customers). And in many senses people do this without thinking about it but simply go along with the rest of the group (e.g.their fellow employees, their own family and ill ideas they were brought up on.) So in a metaphorical sense, I think the show is trying to show that comparison. But there's also the more literal sense such as with serial killers. Than on the level of the story itself, I think what the show is trying to say is that when there's a crisis such as a zombie apocalypse (or in real life such as if there were to be a nuclear holocaust) some people may go to extremes to survive even if it means bumping off somebody else to do it such as killing the other person for food (whether to steal their food or even to eat the other person literally, which would be damn scary!). So that's what the show appears to be trying to do with that comparison, but I just didn't see it played out that much in the episode discussed above.

  2. your site reads great on mobile!!!

    1. Thanks! I'm glad to hear that. I wasn't sure how well it did read on mobile devices, since I don't have Internet on mine.