“It was Zombie-leavable!” – A Horror fan’s declaration of sanity

Posted: March 10, 2013 in Personal Posts
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Here’s a sad, but equally true fact – I am infatuated with zombies. A metaphor for the industrial collide of people wanting to be the same, perhaps. A metaphor for the burned out student, sleepwalking to class in yesterday’s beer-drenched jacket and with his eyes glued to his phone…more likely. That, or I just like the idea of people being eaten up….by society, maybe. By others, more accurate, and despite my efforts into trying to create some cliché poetic reason for my fascination with the living dead, I honestly can’t sincerely say there’s something meaningful behind this fascination. Some people just like things that make them uncomfortable, in a good way.


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Some people enjoy romantic sob-fests, with handsome protagonists with promises of everlasting love to the woman he fell in love with during their two hours spent together.

Other people, like myself, prefer watching those people getting killed by a man with a chainsaw.

Now, I am no person of violence. I’m a pacifist (believe it or not), who besides watching films that use fake blood in excessive amounts, enjoy long walks on the beach and reading poetry, though apparently, according to certain journalists, politicians, academics and public speakers, which will not be named for now, loving the films that I do might be a potential threat to a country’s safety.

Since Columbine, the light that has been put on violent films hase been a dark and morbid one (no pun intended), as well as violent films, music and video games being the center of the media’s ‘blame game’, often referred to as The Columbine Effect. It has been suggested that with the brutal killings of young people without any evident political or religious background, news media were left with the question of who to’ blame’ for the violence that has risen these past few years, in the US especially. Their answer in many cases? Violent entertainment.

Now, I will not point a finger at anyone for inspiring the horrible acts of violence that have been going on these past few years with school shootings as the main point of concern in this situation, despite the fact that news media itself has a tendency of putting only the most violent and gruesome happenings in the world on the top of their lists on what to report on, but I will say that ‘blaming’ an industry with the intention of merely entertaining their audiences might be a bit….well, ironic. Like the Columbine Effect explains, news media might want to turn their finger pointing to themselves instead.

The horror/thriller industry is not an educator. It is not meant to teach us about how to live our lives, how to think or how to act. It’s not meant to give us ‘ideas’ or create an image of what is right and what is wrong, or how the world really is. It is, in many ways, just like the cliché romantic comedies, here to entertain. They are not what the world is like, they are not real and they certainly are not made to promote what they’re about. Just like most of us know we will not meet ‘Mr Right’ at a carnival and live together happily ever after, we know we won’t find ourselves needing to know how to use a chainsaw in case of a zombie apocalypse. However, after watching our daily dose of news, we might find ourselves thinking of the possibility of never finding love in this horrible world or having to consider locking ourselves into our homes and sleeping with a gun underneath out pillow.

WARM BODIES
Not all zombies are evil…like those in Warm Bodies. Source

Films are there to give us an escape from reality. They are there not to give their audience ‘ideas’ on how to pursue their lives. They are there for you to sit back, relax, and watch something that has nothing to do with you, or your life, and, hopefully, never will.

You’ll never meet Ryan Gosling. And you’ll never have to escape a hoard of zombies chasing you. But whichever you might prefer, both are fun to get indulged in. You could be Ryan Gosling’s wife or you could be an apocalypse survivor who saved the world. You can be Ryan Gosling himself, or you could be the leading lady that escaped the horrible man with a chainsaw. Or you could be both.

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For 120 minutes you can escape reality and all its gruesomeness. You have the privilegde to find delight in a world of make-believe magic before you turn your television back to the news to hear about the rising crimewave close to your neighbourhood and people, perhaps just like you, who have been faced with unthinkable horror in their lives.

Whenever I watch horror films, I never feel like doing the things I just witnessed. In some ways, horror films leave me with a blissfulness flowing through me, a gratitude that my life is as good as it is.

So, after this rambling of the apparently violent and insane individual I can proudly say that after watching the last episode of The Walking Dead I raised my apparently violent arms in the air and shouted “THAT WAS ZOMBIE-LEAVABLE!” before snuggling back into bed and, secretly, read some Shakespeare.

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Comments
  1. Tommy says:

    Really nice 😀 good reading,

  2. Levi says:

    A very interesting topic. What doesn’t get taken into account when looking at the relationship between violence and the media is individualisation. Too often aspects such as how someone was brought up and mental illnesses are left unanalysed. I think the media and popular culture is used as a way to generalise a big topic which quite simply can’t be generalised!

    P.s. nothing wrong with liking a good ol’ zombie horror! 😉

  3. kashtonbutler says:

    Hey Sophia, LOVE your blog, right up my street. I just realised my absence from news writing means I haven’t been able to give you the contact details of the writer I know who’s zombie film “Before Dawn” has just come out. If you drop me an email at kate_ashton_butler@yahoo.co.uk I’ll happily email you his details over if you still want to use him for an interview.

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