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Posts tagged ‘The Walking Dead’

The Walking Dead, Rick Grimes and Me

If you’ve read About Me, The Director’s Cut (yeah, I’m that cool) (okay, maybe I’m not  that cool, but it’s sort of mean for you to point that out right now considering how this is my blog and everything, but whatever ) then you know I’ve got a fear/fascination relationship with zombies. Well, not zombies themselves, like personally (I don’t actually know any zombies), but zombie culture .

It’s the gore. I have a thing about gore. I don’t like the gore and zombies always seem to be covered in the gore. It’s creepy.

Oh, and also they want to eat people and no matter how many zombies you kill there will always be more coming right behind them and they keep coming and coming and oh my God you’re gonna die and I’m gonna die but you’re gonna die first and I swear I didn’t mean to trip you but it doesn’t even matter because it only bought me like five minutes and I’m still gonna die!

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So anyway, um, yeah, the zombie thing really creeps me out. But I just can’t keep away from it. When I first wrote that About Me, I said I was sure I’d end up watching AMC’s The Walking Dead. As of now I’ve seen the first two seasons. (Because I bought them. They’re in my house! Oh my goodness, what’s wrong with me?) The second half of season 3 starts this Sunday, and I’ll hopefully get completely caught up then.

Not surprisingly, I’ve gotten somewhat desensitized to the gory stuff. Very surprisingly, I got crazy caught up in some of the characters. And I don’t mean crazy as in “a lot”. You know, like a regular person. I mean crazy-ray emotionally wound up by certain people on the show who just made me so very angry. Like pissed off angry. Like that guy just made me SO MAD.

Ok, it was Rick.

Yeah, I know how much you hated Lori, and she was bad . Really pretty awful. Horrible. Horrible Lori.

But for me it was Rick.

I watched season 2 pretty quickly, in three sittings, and by the end of it I was practically furious with Rick. I gave vent to my Rick anger in a couple of other blogger’s comments: Rick is a terrible leader, he pretty much took leadership of the group without being asked to do it, he makes decisions based on his own emotional needs without regard to what’s best for group survival. He thinks he’s the only one capable of making good decisions, but he agonizes over each and every one, and then he goes into a woe-is-me cry-baby routine when things don’t turn out like he thought they would.  Man up, Rick! This is the apocalypse, dude! You’re gonna have to make some tough choices, so just do it. Be a real leader or step down and let someone take charge who’s willing to make some decisions worthy of the zombie apocalypse.

I was pretty obnoxious.

Honestly, it felt really good to rant. But then I starting thinking about why. Why was I so upset with this fictional character? And why was I so enamored of Daryl? Okay duh, but really, I was drawn to him as a character. And Carol, too. I greatly admired traits that Carol and Daryl possessed. (Carol and Daryl. Have you seen the little Hello Kitty Carol and Daryls? I’m sorry but that’s just cute.)

Daryl is self-assured, self-sufficient, competent. I’m sure he’d rather live, but his actions aren’t entirely governed by a fear of his or anyone else’s death. Daryl and Carol are both resilient, they are survivors. Carol has suffered a great loss, but she plods along and does the best she can with what she’s got. She adapts and just keeps going; she doesn’t let things destroy her.

I think it’s interesting that you have a character like Rick who has a mental collapse when his wife dies, a woman who he doesn’t seem to even like that much anymore. Then you have Carol, who has to watch her daughter get gunned down because she’s a zombie – a zombie, ya’ll – but she continues to be mentally stable. I think Rick maybe takes on more than he’s equipped to handle, and then he buckles under the pressure.

As I thought about these characters, I wondered which of these traits I’m drawn to because I recognize that as part of who I am. And which am I drawn to because I wish that’s who I was? Wait, is that really it?

And then what of the traits that I despise – is it because those are the things I don’t like about myself?

Well, crapola.

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So, yeah. I slowly realized that Carol is who I think I am, Daryl is who I wish I was, and Rick…darn you Rick! Rick is pretty much a lot of who I really am.

I often bite off more than I can chew. I want to be in control and make the decisions; I want to be a leader. But sometimes I find that I’m not up to that challenge. I think I can do things better than somebody else, but then I screw it up or I realize that the job was way harder than I imagined. I definitely second guess my decisions all the time, and I beat myself up way too much when I fail.

So the largest part of my Rick anger was because I thought he was a weak leader, and I identified with a lot of the things that I think made him a weak leader.

Even though that kinda sucks, I’m glad that I can see myself clearly enough to recognize my faults. Ok, some of my faults. And it’s a good thing to see traits in others that you can aspire to, even if they’re seen in fictional characters. Heck, it’s just good to know what kind of person you would like to be. It’s harder to put a stake in that than you’d think.

Wait, that’s a vampire reference.

It’s harder to put a bullet through the brai…

Ugh. I’m sorry, I just can’t do it.  You get it.

Oh and also: I would never trip you, I promise. Everyone else, but never you.

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Realizing all that didn’t make me less mad at him. Really, I want my tv heroes to be stronger than I am, and I guess that’s kind of the bottom line.  True to that, as soon as Rick chopped the guy in the head in season 3, I suddenly wasn’t angry anymore. I was all team Rick again. I like forceful Rick who won’t put up with somebody trying to feed him to a zombie. Chop-group-survival-threats-in-the-head Rick is awesome.

Wait, if I’m like Rick, then that means I’m awesome too!

I knew it!

Items of Interest:

KnoxMcCoy.com (his Walking Dead recaps are the best – and funniest – as are TWD podcasts that he hosts)

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I Dream of Zombie

If you’ve read About Me (The Director’s Cut), then you know I’m afraid of sharks and zombies.  You also would be aware of the fact that I just have to know what happens.  If Pandora’s box is a tv or a computer (I heart you, Wikipedia), then call me Pandora.  I know I shouldn’t watch Zombieland.  I know I shouldn’t read the plot synopsis of every single The Walking Dead episode.  But I do did won’t stop.

The odd thing is, I mostly don’t get nightmares from scary movies.  I always expect to, but it rarely happens.  No, I get daymares (sigh).  For a week or two after I see a really good zombie movie, I expect to see them standing around in my front yard every time I go outside.  I still open the door because, you know, zombies aren’t real yet.  But my mind flashes that image in front of my eyes as I reach for the handle and it’s kinda scary.  Would you think less of me if I admitted to a little pause every now and then, before I turned the knob?  To peeking a bit before I opened the door all the way?  What if I only peeked at night?  Okay, well, I never do those things, so that was just hypothetical and all.

So here’s the thing: I’ve had four or five zombie dreams over the last few weeks.  I thought I had zombie dreams once every few months, but this… This is throwing me for a loop.  What if I have zombie dreams way, way more often than I realize?  What if I have zombie dreams all the time, like once a week?  Or every night!  This is very disturbing!  I don’t like the idea that my brain is up there doing things that I don’t know about.  It’s not right. I mean, who knows what those zombies have been doing in my brain while I sleep.

Anyway, the last zombie dream I had was a movie.  Sometimes I make movies while I dream, just not good movies.  This movie was kind of a combination of a lot of different zombie things I’ve seen or read the plot synopsis of every single episode.  The landscape was deserted city (28 Days Later), with a touch of war-torn decimation.  The protagonist was a regular kind of guy who becomes the leader because of his leader charisma, I guess (The Walking Dead). (Did I really need to parentheses that?) (You haven’t been living under a rock or anything, right?) He was the strong but deeply caring type, and he was really concerned that his wife was going to become a zombie, which (spoiler alert!) she eventually did.

I hate blood and guts, so my zombie dreams are pretty lame tame.  This movie was no exception, so the zombies were mostly just walking around and doing nothing severely threatening (Shawn of the Dead; you’d have time to throw records at these zombies).  They were slow and bumbling and brainless (haha), and they got that way from a virus (Contagion).  That’s how I explained to myself that none of them appeared bitten or anything else gruesome or horrifying or seeping.

Rick (if that was really his name) was leading his little group around trying to find a safe place where the virus was not gonna get them.  No one they came across would let these outsiders into their safe little hidy holes, and next thing you know, Lori his wife is a zombie.

I know!  So scary.

Well, he’s pining away a bit (Oh, the Humanity!), and following her around when I realize that these zombies are totally wimpy and unbloodthirsty. Hmm… That ain’t right. So all of a sudden these vampires show up. I knew they were vampires, but they were big and kind of shaggy, do I decided it was a group of vampires and werewolves (Underworld) and maybe some mixed breeds. Because that is how the zombies would go from brainless slow-walking contagious bodies, to brain-hungry, blood-thirsty evil dead. See, these vampire wolf things were going to start biting the zombies (though I don’t know what put that idea into their heads, except they’re just mean), and that would turn the zombies into ravenous beasts.

Well, I figured that would save what was left of the movie, but I can’t screen my eyes with my fingers while I’m sleeping, so I woke up. I just knew I wasn’t going to like the truckload of gross that was about to be unleashed.

So, that’s it. I feel like I owe you an ending, but I only write movies while I sleep. I’m really sorry, but you’ll have to come up with your own ending. Make it a happy one if you can, will you? Those are my favorites.

PS: I wonder why I’m not scared of vampires or werewolves?

Week In Review – Flat tired and chewy wired

Sunday
I’m tired this morning because I stayed up way too late last night.
First, I went on Wikipedia (I heart you Wikipedia) and read the synopsis
for every single episode 
of The Walking Dead.
You know, because I’m nuts.
Second, I read blogs and watched Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
in an attempt to wash my brain. continue reading…