By Frans Snackers
Even though you might have an elaborate plan of action already set up in your mind, or maybe even have made actual preparations, I have quite some reasons to believe there’s a big chance you’re still going to be one of the walking dead faster than you would ever have imagined. The scenario of the zombie apocalypse has become a hot topic on various platforms of social media, with many unlikely supporters who for the sake of self-preservation should stay far away from supporting a possible zombie scenario. It takes a specific type of person to survive a zombie apocalypse. Overweight hipster kids, who browse different kinds of silly forums on the internet and watch pictures of cute, anime zombie cats all day, are not that specific kind of person. To be frank, it’s likely you’re not that specific kind of person either. Not that there is any shame in that. In fact, you might be a more valuable member of today’s society because of it. You see, to survive a zombie apocalypse, and to keep surviving, you will have to throw out any social conventions you previously had on aspects of charity, compassion, sharing etc. While many people will be able to conform to these notions in due time, fact of the matter is, you won’t have a lot of time. Especially the first 24 hours after the outbreak will be hectic. What’s going on? Are my friends and family ok? Where do I go? What do I bring? These are questions that will all pop in your mind. They won’t pop into the mind of the true survivor. He immediately assumes his family is dead. He knows his friends are eating each other in the hallways of their housing unit. He knows going to the places the government has indicated as safe zones are likely death traps. He knows what to bring, in fact, he has had his bag packed, full of basic utilities and survival gear, and has been ready to go for a couple of years now. He has a plan to get out of the densely populated areas, and several contingency routes. He is dedicated to do whatever it takes. He is the person everyone thinks of as crazy, but who they’ll be begging for help when shit hits the fan. Being a survivor is not for everyone, certainly not for those who try to romanticize it based on their favorite television show. Most of you will be better off dead.
By Maggie Tan
There’s just something about apocalypse movies that I seem to love. However, when there are zombies involved: even better. The case with zombie movies, though, is that once you’ve seen a zombie flick, you’ve basically seen them all. As zombie movies flood the market, so the clichés come peeking around the corner. The question is whether fans will continue to watch zombie movies despite of it all. Let’s take a look at some of the most common character clichés in zombie movies.
Characters who fail to recognize zombies
I find it particularly striking that there are always characters in zombie movies who just do not seem to get their head around the fact that, yes, they have indeed come face-to-face with a zombie. Some character’s friend would be standing in his doorway and this person would be totally oblivious that his friend has turned into a zombie. What with the blood-soaked shirt, the missing jaw and the decomposing body, you’d think that this character has picked up on the fact that his friend is a flesh-eating cannibal. But no. As this character proceeds to approach his friend, stupidly asking: “Hey man, are you alright? Maybe you should see a doctor”, his friend will just rip off a chunk of his neck. What are the odds?
Characters who cannot outrun zombies
Zombies are not particularly known to be the stealthiest beings in zombie movies. They make themselves known. They groan loudly, stumble over obstacles and knock down every possible object down the road as they advance toward the characters. At the pace the zombies are moving, the survivors could have just sauntered slowly to any vehicle and got away, if they so desire. Given the fact that a zombie walks at the speed of a confused old lady, the characters probably do not even need a vehicle to be at a safe distance from the zombies. They could have simply walked away from them. I can’t help but wonder how the characters always manage to be caught up by the zombies and get devoured. In recent movies, though, zombies can run like Olympic sprint champions. Whatever works.
Characters who endanger other group members
In zombie movies, there is always a character’s dad, boyfriend, or what have you, who got bit by a zombie and decides to keep this little piece of information from the rest of the characters. Yes, why not? Eventually, someone lets the cat out of the bag and the character would beg and wail: “Please don’t kill my father, he is the only one I got!”, and the dad would get shot in the head anyway. Other times, a character would deny that he got bit, or he’d say: “Oh, it is just a scratch. No need to worry.”, while standing there with blood oozing out of his gaping wound. A somewhat intelligent group member catches on and prevents a catastrophe from happening by bashing that person’s head in with a bat. As baffling as it sounds, most of the time the characters would believe the infected person’s story and they happily get on with their lives. Until the inevitable happens: that person transforms into a zombie and turns some of the group members into his zombie friends. Classic.
In the end, zombie movies are not free from clichés. But then again, which movies are? The cinema will find new ways to reinvent the theme, even if we’ve seen the same clichés over and over again. I’m sure most fans don’t even mind the clichés in zombie movies, and neither do I. My only complaint is that I can’t get enough of them.