Is anyone else sick of, fed up with, bored, jaded with the undead? I am. There’s Dawn of the Dead, Shaun of the Dead, The Walking Dead, World War Z and these are just the ones that rhyme (I’m in the UK so we pronounce it ‘zed’ so the point stands!). There’s also a million videogames, comics and books about the rotten bastards. Now I’ve always loved zombies since I first saw Night of the Living Dead when I was 10 and I’ve spent far too much time planning what I would do in the event of a hypothetical zombie outbreak – the trick is to find a bicycle, it’s light, manoeuvrable and doesn’t need fuel (told you I’ve thought too much about this). However now there’s too many of the stumbling freaks and it’s really dulled any fear or threat they once evoked. Why so many, world? I have a few theories:
– It’s due to all the young George Romero era zombie fans like me growing up and making entertainment based on it. They want to recreate the kind of films they love plus its cheap to have a supporting cast of shambling, groaning extras.
– Zombies have become the bad guys that its OK to kill onscreen. They’re thoughtless, unfeeling cannibals and the general feeling is that they aren’t human anymore so killing them puts them out of their misery. Basically zombies are the new Nazis in films. Or if you want the best of both worlds watch Dead Snow featuring zombie Nazis.
– Zombies are an extremely flexible and easy metaphor for whatever social commentary you want to express. Romero based his whole ‘Dead’ trilogy around this (I refuse to count the later movies). Whether racism or consumerism or just old-fashioned disease, zombies fit the bill perfectly. Look out for my upcoming film where zombies are used to highlight the dangers of overfishing – Prawn of the Dead.
Whatever the reasons, media has become over saturated with them and it would be nice to see some new ideas. Are there any other monsters that deserve a revival. Twilight has pretty much killed off vampires and werewolves and The Mummy seems too primitive. There’s a generation growing up now that have become blasé about the monsters that scared us. It’s a sad state of affairs when vampires are associated with sparkles and romance and not Lost Boys style jeeps with wooden stakes on the bumper and baths full of holy water. So is all hope lost? (short answer no, I just wanted to build up a bit of suspense, is that so wrong?).
Hope comes stomping over the horizon, smashing everything in it’s path. Yes, it’s the return of the giant monster movie! Coming soon, we’ll all be able to watch Guillermo Del Toro’s massive monsters vs robots epic – Pacific Rim and it looks great. Have a look at the trailer below and tell me it doesn’t look like the greatest thing ever. And after that there’s a new Godzilla film being directed by Gareth Edwards the man who brought us Monsters. Who knows, maybe there’s a remake of Pulgasari on the way!
So zombies it looks like your time in the spotlight might be up. Time for you to stagger off and hibernate until we’re ready to shoot you in the heads and hide from you in shopping malls. In the meantime we’ve got a war to fight with some gigantic monsters, they might even leave some scraps for you when they’re finished.
What do you think? Do you still have love for zed? Or do you think they need a rest? Let me know or I’ll eat your brains.