Thursday, June 21, 2012

Concerning Bath Salts, Zombies, and The Fine Art of Letting Things Go

OK.  I was telling myself I wouldn't write this.  I was telling myself once I go back to work, I'd actually start things off with a review.  Even picked out the movie and got the review started.

But sometimes, something comes along and you just have to comment on it.

I know I'm not alone on this one, and frankly, some people have already said this probably in better terms than I will.  At the same time, it's one of those statements where somehow, it's not enough to just point to someone else and go "What they said."  You just have to get it out there yourself.

And so it comes to this.

When the first news report came out of Florida, we all had a somewhat macabre laugh.  Sure, some poor bastard just got his face chewed off by a guy who was pretty far out of his mind on bath salts.  Like the Darwin Awards, it's something horrible that happens to a person, but at the same time, we couldn't help but be amused.  Inevitably, once reports of a naked man eating another man's face hit the web, murmurs of the zombie apocalypse inevitably started.

...but it didn't stop there.

Suddenly, the web became riddled with stories of people eating people.  An event that, surreal as it sounds, is apparently more common than we gave it credit for.  Especially where drugs are concerned. 

On a quick aside on that note, I'd just like to say - THIS is the kind of shit we need to show people in anti-drug videos.  People aren't gonna remember the video of some idiotic stoner shooting themselves, because that shit almost never happens anyway.  But show them someone who's baked their brain on bath salts eating another man's flesh and kids are GONNA remember it.

Anyway, I'm getting off point here.  The thing is, this all turned into a surreal cause and effect.  The web caught fire with the first story and got caught up in zombie fever, and the news sites got wind of it and obliged people with more stories of people eating people, the unluckiest people in the world.  Any question of whether or not the news sites were deliberately feeding on this (no pun intended) went out the window for me earlier today whe I saw the most recent cannibalism account on The Huffington Post with the interest tag 'zombie apocalypse'

Incidentally, I'd also be VERY concerned about anyone who votes 'Hot' on this story.

What am I getting at with this?

It's an uncomfortable thing I've been batting around for a while now.  With each new account of the production clusterfuck that was the World War Z movie, I figured it was a stumbling block.  When every new FPS game suddenly had a 'zombie' mode, I got even less certain.  With the lackluster performance of the second season of The Walking Dead, I was seriously starting to wonder (though I will admit, I am somewhat hopeful for season 3 based on what we know of the process so far.)

...but that last part aside, in light of these news stories, as well as just all the backlogs of merchandise for it that, by this point, are starting to clutter store shelves like the creatures they depict, I honestly don't mind saying...

I think we finally killed the zombie trend.
Or if we haven't it's time to finally lay it to rest.

I hate to say that, cause it's been some fun times getting to this point.  Sure, not everything we got out of it was gold, but we DID have some pretty fun stuff leading up to it.

But it's time to put it back on the shelf for a while and let it take its much deserved rest instead of letting it linger and overstay it's welcome like...well...a zombie.

Especially given how eagerly some people seem to be latching onto these bad trip stories with an almost eagerness to see a zombie apocalypse happen.  I know this is giving you news sites some great traffic, but really, ease off now before someone really gets worked up enough that some poor bastard gets a shotgun to the chest.

In short, much like in the Italian movie Zombi, the undead craze has jumped shark.  Unlike in that movie, however, it's not ending well for the zombie.

I'm not saying it's never again, but let's give it a well deserved break for a decade or two.

So thanks in the meantime to, among the following: George Romero, Robert Kirkman, Danny Boyle, Edgar Wright, Max Brooks, Frank Darabont Sam Raimi (OK, you didn't actually add to the genre during this new wave, but hey, the Evil Dead movies are still great times) and too many others to properly hope to thank without this going on any longer than it has for the years when this new wave went well...even if Boyle won't actually consider his work zombies.

...of course, this will raise the question of what's to follow.  Time will tell, really.  But for now, let's just leave this one to rest for a while.

To quote another film involving the undead:
"Sometimes, dead is better."

No comments:

Post a Comment