The ineffable joy of Zombie Apocalypse.

Zombie ApocalypseThe past two weeks have fried my brain.  I’ve been in dire need of zombie distraction.  The Walking Dead is a no-go for me – I’m so over it it’s not even a no-brainer.  It’s simply not entertaining anymore.

There I was, sitting on my bed in a daze, channel surfing, which is kind of a guy thing but that’s how desperate I was, when I stumbled across Zombie Apocalypse, a 2011 made for TV movie.  I was really surprised at the quality of the story telling.  The movie got my attention and kept it throughout.  Oh, some of the special effects were hokey, I mean… What zombie movie doesn’t have a few hokey special effects?  On the other hand, most of Zombie Apocalypse was darn good.

What did I like about the movie?  First of all, the acting.  Well cast.  Bravo!  C’mon, how can you go wrong with Ving Rhames?  For another, the interesting ways disparate groups of people from all areas of the country managed to survive.  It wasn’t only the strong, the mean, the vicious, and the crazy sociopaths who survived.  It was those who organized quickly and planned ahead– After an entire season of watching Rick avoid planning on The Walking Dead, I really got behind that.  Organize.  Come up with a plan.  Beat the zombies at their own game.  Check.

The realistic discussions about weapons made a whole lot of sense.  Why waste bullets?  As the characters themselves explain, bullets are scarce and firing a gun attracts more zombies.  The largest group of survivors were all members of an archery team.  Neat twist.  Whoever came up with that little gem was a genius.

I got a kick out of the terminology used by various groups to describe zombies – “The Dead.”  “Zombies.”  “Zombs.”  “Shufflers.”  “Runners.”  It was actually pretty cool.  “Zombs” is a cute nickname for the brainless, don’t ya think?

Zombie Apocalypse contained one thing sorely lacking in The Walking Dead– Hope– even the slimmest thread of hope is better than none at all.

Besides, I didn’t find a single character so vastly annoying I prayed the zombies would eat him/her.  How weird is that?

Authors, take note – doesn’t have to be perfect.  Must be engaging and must have courageous characters.  And hope.  Never underestimate the power of hope.

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10 Responses to The ineffable joy of Zombie Apocalypse.

  1. Without hope, not much is left except madness.

    I have just started watching The Walking Dead, and you’ve just described some of the problems that I have with it. Everytime something happens, I’m there shouting ‘Don’t do that!’, ‘Are you stupid?’ or ‘Why the hell didn’t you think about this before?’ In my opinion, any one in the group who has a valuable skill should be teaching every other member (after all, what will you do if that person gets killed?) and there should be contingency plans for every scenario they can think of. If this, then that. Sure, you can’t think of everything, but plan for everything you can.

    The one question I would have asked the doctor at the CDC is ‘Can zombies starve to death’. Hubby thought I was just being anal, but it’s about hope. Zombies apparently need to eat – they leave the cities when they can’t get food. So if they need to eat, what happens if they don’t? Most of them don’t move very fast, once there’s not an easy supply of people for food, wild animals must be harder to catch. Can zombies starve to death?

    Why is this important? Hope. If zombies can starve to death, you have hope. All you need to do is hold out long enough for zombie numbers to drop off and your odd start to improve.

    If I survived long enough (maybe unlikely given my lack of martial skills) I’d have the most organised, kick-arse group of survivors on the planet.

  2. I’m with you, Ciara – and I did love TWD, at least Season One. I was willing to overlook a lot of obvious plot holes, but the truth is that while the zombies evoke fear and horror, it’s the survivors who provide the drama. The plot holes got too big for me this season – became canyons.

  3. Amber Skyze says:

    I’m glad you got your Zombie fix!

  4. Jaye says:

    Ooh, a movie to look for. Wonder how I’ve missed this one.

    Yeah, TWD turned into a horrible disappointment. Strange as it sounds, I couldn’t help but compare it to Gilligan’s Island. The most idiotic set up in television history with a cast of absurdly bad actors, and yet, and yet it worked. Why did it work? Because the Skipper and his crew dealt with their situation. They NEVER gave up hope for rescue and NEVER stopped trying to rescue themselves. Was there ever a scene with Gilligan sitting on the beach, contemplating suicide? Did the Skipper counsel inactivity because surely the government would soon send a boat? No, they built bamboo houses and planted banana gardens and put on plays and the Professor kept inventing things.

    If TWD had a Professor, I’d probably still be watching.

  5. Tom Stronach says:

    I think I saw this title on Netflix, may have to check it out and, (just for Oscar) glad you and Jaye have been zombified again too…

    xxxxx

  6. Do, Tom. It’s far from the greatest movie ever made but it did hold my interest and definitely did not annoy me. :)

  7. I totally missed it the first time around as well, Jaye. I’m surprised. I usually have my Zombie Radar on. You’re right about Gilligan’s Island. In fact I think I mentioned something once about Daryl morphing into Gilligan to Rick’s Skipper – which drove me insane because Daryl had been such a kick ass character. He deserves better than ‘little buddy’ ‘sidekick’ status.
    And you are definitely right about the fact that Gilligan’s Island was immensely popular because both the characters and the audience were invested in eventual rescue while at the same time we were entertained by the foibles and failures and speculative romances in the meantime.

  8. I did. I got my zombie fix, Amber! :P

  9. Sandra Cox says:

    I’m probably the only person on the planet that has problems warming up to zombies.

  10. Well, they are dead, Sandra. ;)