October 31, 2010

The Walking Dead: Episode 1 "Days Gone Bye"
— Russ from Winterset

I just got done watching the premiere of AMC's new Zombie Miniseries "The Walking Dead", and I am NOT disappointed.

I'm not familiar with the source material, but when I heard that Frank Darabont ("The Shawshank Redemption") was going to be the director I figured that it would be worth watching. After sitting through the 90 minute premiere, I'm looking forward to the next episode in the six-episode run.

Since some of you probably missed this episode, I'm not going to go into the whole plot, but I am going to address some nitpicky little details I have with the premiere in the extended entry. Not really what I'd call "spoilers" since the trailers have pretty well covered all the high points, but you might want to skip the next part if you want to experience it for the first time in a later airing. 1. Rick, the main character in the story, is a deputy sheriff who suffered a gunshot wound to the chest and was comatose in the hospital when the plague broke out. When he comes to, he finds the hallways of this hospital looking like one of the abandoned buildings in the Chernobyl hot zone, and his first sign that something ain't quite right is when he sees a half-eaten woman laying in the hallway just beyond the doors of the coma ward.

My problem with this setup? Dude wakes up in a hospital after a coma of indeterminate length during a zombie outbreak, and he's not hip deep in his own waste products? Now maybe we're going to find out in some future episode that a particularly dedicated nursing staff stuck around until the last possible moment providing care for a vegetable, but I think this is probably a case of "movie magic" - sort of like revolvers that shoot 27 rounds before clicking on an empty cylinder or a hero who can absorb blows to the head that would shatter a pumpkin while suffering nothing more than contusions and bruises.

I don't really find his reaction to the gnawed-on corpse to be a problem, since someone disoriented and unaware of what happened during his nap-time could plausibly be in shock or convinced that he's dreaming. I'm more concerned with how that hospital got to the point where it would fit right in among the British NHS facilities, unless Rick was in that coma for WAY longer than you would reasonably think that a helpless vegetable could survive in those conditions. Maybe this series is set in a post-Obamacare future where waking up to stopped clocks and broken monitors is an everyday event? Either that or the SEIU at that location has the management of that particular facility running scared.

The "waking up in a hospital while the world has gone to hell without you" thing could be considered to be cribbed from "28 Days Later", but I don't have a problem with that. It's a zombie film: It's SUPPOSED to be derivative. There's only so many ways to set up a character having no awareness of what happened to society. Unless you want to give out a hat-tip to "Strange Brew" fans & have Rick "off planet on vacation at the time", I'd say that the old "coma play" is as good as any. Actually, come to think of it, I don't know if TWD cribbed the "wake up" from 28DL or if it was the other way around. Wikipedia lists 2003 as the date of the first TWD graphic novels, while 28DL dates from 2002 and was released in 2003. It's completely plausible that both creators might have had the same idea independently of each other. I'll let the purists hash this one out in the comments.

2. If you're going to have a zombie movie, you're going to need a whole shitload of Zombie Dispatchin' Guns. TWD doesn't get cute with the weapons involved. We see your standard issue pump-action shotguns, a scoped bolt-action centerfire rifle, and a big ol' .357 Magnum that Rick used as his on-duty gun before the outbreak. A Beretta 92 in 9mm and a "Ma Deuce" 50-cal machine gun are featured near the end of the premiere, but neither one of them gets to speak for the record. The family that takes Rick in after his escape from the hospital mentions that gunshots attract more "walkers", so I figure that baseball bats and tire irons will get a heavy workout before this series is over.

The presence of a "plausible armory" in this episode of the miniseries makes me feel confident that the rest of the episodes won't "jump the shark". No pump action crossbows, no ninja weaponry, no bullwhips, and no "two-gun shooters" auditioning for a part in a John Woo movie. Strictly "meat and potatoes" on the ballistic front. Rick even gives his initial host family good advice about shooting after they raid the armory at the police station, telling them to watch their ammo consumption because "it goes way quicker than you think it does, especially during target practice". Not too many zombie movies address the probable collapse of the ammunition industry in the ensuing chaos, and it's good to see one that gives a hat tip to logistics.

My only quibble with the firearms shown? Since most deputy sheriffs that I know are more "gun guys" than most of the city cops in my limited circle of friends, I assume that Rick would be well aware of the consequences of firing a Magnum revolver in a confined space like the inside of an M1 Abrams tank. Firing a .357 Mag in a wide open field without some sort of ear protection will take a toll on your hearing - firing one in a confined space could very well shatter your damn eardrums and leave you as deaf as Beethoven. This isn't a big error, IMHO. It's perfectly understandable that even a well trained shooter will panic and make a mistake when confronted by a reanimating corpse. Hell, since Jack Bauer is not a character in this miniseries (as far as I know), you should expect lots of mistakes like that.

3. Other than the "how long was he in the damn hospital?" question that I've already addressed, the only other question I've got is "where are they going with this series". As I understand it, the source material is ongoing, so there is no established ending for this story. I hope that the creative team resists the urge to go all "Lost" on us and start introducing plot twist after plot twist after plot twist. If they go for some sort of "Bobby Ewing stepping out of the shower because the whole prior season was just a dream" resolution, Russ from Winterset might just have to choke a bitch. (The only exception to that would be if they wrap the whole thing up by having Bob Newhart wake up next to Suzanne Pleshette and say "Honey, I just had the weirdest dream about zombies". I would cut them slack for that one.)

Overall? I give it two thumbs up, with hope that the next five episodes won't disappoint me.

Posted by: Russ from Winterset at 07:43 PM | Comments (159)
Post contains 1212 words, total size 7 kb.

1 Please tell me this is on Hulu!

Posted by: Quilly Mammoth at October 31, 2010 07:48 PM (3WlaW)

2 The "waking up in the hospital" scene was NOT cribbed from "28 Days Later", though a lot of people thought it was when Issue #1 came out in 2003.  The reality is that Kirkman and Moore did that first issue shortly before the movie came out.  Kirkman was frustrated at the coincidence afterward, and protested often in the ensuing months that it was not a steal.

The first ep was GREAT.  It appeared to cover about the first issue and a half of the comic, and outdid it.  I'm hopeful that it will be much tighter, more action-packed narrative than the comic was after issue #6.  This is going to be a great series.

Posted by: The War Between the Undead States at October 31, 2010 07:50 PM (F5Gxy)

3 RE: Hulu, I have no idea if they will have the episode.  I'm not a Hulu consumer, but if they regularly feature AMC fare like "Mad Men" or "Breaking Bad", then I would expect to see "The Walking Dead" show up there as well.

Posted by: Russ from Winterset at October 31, 2010 07:53 PM (/MEFr)

4 read the title and thought this was another post about Dems in congress

Posted by: Jose at October 31, 2010 07:54 PM (mnYZc)

5 Wait, it's only a 6-episode run?

That might be for the best, since the comic started going way downhill after the first story arc ended in issue #6.

Posted by: The War Between the Undead States at October 31, 2010 07:55 PM (F5Gxy)

6 "waking up in the hospital" most likely comes from "Day of the Triffids", especially the 1962 film version of the novel. Lots of almost identical camera angles and shots in 28 Days Later. I'd have to go back through the DVD extras, but I vaguely remember Danny Boyle talking about Triffids.

Posted by: IllTemperedCur at October 31, 2010 07:56 PM (9Lm5R)

7 Considering how many hits with the bat it took to drop that one zombie, not using guns is going to entail a lot of risk.

Posted by: Rebar at October 31, 2010 07:57 PM (7gKAF)

8 Considering how many hits with the bat it took to drop that one zombie, not using guns is going to entail a lot of risk.

Well, considering the brain has to be destroyed, blunt weapons are far less efficient.  Got to smash through the skull, and all.  But it's riskier to waste precious ammo and risk bringing down a whole horde of zombies down on you.

Posted by: The War Between the Undead States at October 31, 2010 08:01 PM (F5Gxy)

9 Maybe all these zombie stories are a warning from the future.

Posted by: eman at October 31, 2010 08:02 PM (5/qO3)

10 The Walking Dead is one of the few works that lives up to the graphic novel title.  I was thrilled AMC was doing this and may have done clappy hands when Darabont got involved.  I love that his directing is so straightforward even with the most outlandish things.  That makes it far creepier.

I try not to be a huge purist about the source material vs. the tv show/movie thing and I thought that the one pretty major change shown so far actually works better than what was in the comic.  I'm also hopeful that this means that one of my favorite characters will live longer. 

Posted by: alexthechick at October 31, 2010 08:03 PM (bQ5xy)

11 ITC, "Day of the Triffids" was mentioned on the 28DL wikipedia page as a big influence on Danny Boyle.  I can't believe that I missed that one.  I'm going to blame my entire knowledge of that story being from the book instead of the movie for my mistake.

Posted by: Russ from Winterset at October 31, 2010 08:09 PM (/MEFr)

12 I'm thinking Rick needs a freaking flame thrower for the zombie hordes.  Will that destroy their brains as good as bullets?

Posted by: RushBabe at October 31, 2010 08:09 PM (a3Z62)

13 I'm thinking Rick needs a freaking flame thrower for the zombie hordes.  Will that destroy their brains as good as bullets?

Wouldn't be as effective.... the zombies would be still be mobile until the brain was cooked.  Besides, there'd be the issue of finding a supply of fuel for it.

Posted by: The War Between the Undead States at October 31, 2010 08:14 PM (F5Gxy)

14 I try not to be a huge purist about the source material vs. the tv show/movie thing and I thought that the one pretty major change shown so far actually works better than what was in the comic.  I'm also hopeful that this means that one of my favorite characters will live longer.

I'm just glad that we don't have to worry about suddenly losing an awesome artist to a much shittier one.

Posted by: The War Between the Undead States at October 31, 2010 08:15 PM (F5Gxy)

15

Do we have to have spoiler alerts?  If so, highlight to reveal:

My only gripe was the best-friend-banging-faux-widow subplot...makes me want to groan like a zombie.  Hey, Rick, surprise!  Carl's got a new daddy.  ]

But I liked it, overall.  And if head shot + silence = survival, then I sure as hell hope we do see some crossbow action in the future.

Posted by: Gem at October 31, 2010 08:20 PM (zw+pb)

16 My thought was that the half eaten corpse lady was the lone surviving nurse taking care of him until a zomb got her not long before he woke up.  thats why there were no other bodies in the hallway.

Posted by: Guy Fawkes at October 31, 2010 08:23 PM (JcRgg)

17 Posted by: Gem at November 01, 2010 01:20 AM (zw+pb)

If they follow the comic book, that plotline will have major repercussions for a number of characters.  And not just those involved in the relationship.

Posted by: Slublog at October 31, 2010 08:23 PM (JMcVu)

18 The flowers tell us how long he was asleep or something.  We need a florist.  IS there a florist in the house?  Greg!!!!!!

Posted by: bikeguy at October 31, 2010 08:26 PM (Ps/1k)

19 Seawater will not, I repeat NOT, melt zombies.

Posted by: Zombie Dom DeLuise, Triffids are delicious with butter and garlic at October 31, 2010 08:26 PM (3KOAY)

20 I watched it and was aware of the comic series before I heard they were making it into a tv series. It was very well done, you can actually relate to the characters some what and even like them, which is the fatal flaw of so many films. If I know so little about the characters in a film or movie, why should it overtly bother me when they are killed off?

Posted by: Drew in MO at October 31, 2010 08:28 PM (R8S84)

21 So if there is a half-eaten corpse in the hallway, how did Rick not get eaten while he was 'napping'?  Do zombies not like the taste of comatose flesh?  Is it that much tastier when it is running and screaming?

Dang, those zombies are picky.

Posted by: Schroedinger's Cat at October 31, 2010 08:30 PM (dT12g)

22 I think Rick survived by a combination of luck, being quiet since he was in a coma and possibly he was just over looked. It really looked like the shit hit the fan in the hospital and surrounding area.

Posted by: Drew in MO at October 31, 2010 08:33 PM (R8S84)

23 Haven't watched the whole episode yet, I DVR'd it, but the few minutes I did see looked really really good.  I'm a casual fan of Frank Darabont, but I haven't seen a film of his I didn't like so I know it'll be good.

The comic is pretty good.  I only have up to volume 3.  I know lots of crazy shit happens 'round issue 50 or 60.  The spoiler subplot mentioned up above?  Heh, if this series continues on and hews closely to the comic storyline I'll just say shit gets pwned in a most deserved fashion.

Very happy this show seems to be Moron approved.

Posted by: Robert at October 31, 2010 08:35 PM (4ixH5)

24

Just watched it here with my World Series/Halloween party friends after the game ended. It's great. Better than most zombie movies, in fact. The women here (and a couple men) were screaming and jumping every few minutes. A lot of laughing, too. 

Watch it! Unless the whole undead thing disturbs you, then you better not. Bad dreams.

Posted by: Log Cabin at October 31, 2010 08:54 PM (OF0tv)

25 It was great!  Can't wait for the next episode...

Posted by: RarestRX at October 31, 2010 08:58 PM (rmNST)

26 Earlier, I watched the rather long trailers. It is high quality. Not having a television, I have to wait for it to be posted online which I expect to happen in the next few hours.

Posted by: Moi at October 31, 2010 09:59 PM (Ez4Ql)

27 > Dude wakes up in a hospital after a coma of indeterminate length during a zombie outbreak, and he's not hip deep in his own waste products? Having had experience being in a hospital in a coma-like condition I can respond to this. When your comatose or coma-like your metabolism is slow and you don't make many waste products. Urine: Catheterizied. Bag can hold a bit of urine and even if it overflows the mess won't be in the bed - it'll be where ever the bag is. Haven't seen the show. Don't know if they showed him with a catheter but even a show with walking dead might not want to show a person removing their own catheter! Feces: If the patient had been given a dose of morphine (possible since they don't know when he'll wake up and they might want to keep the pain under control when he does wake. Might have been on a low-level morphine drip.) then he'll have some remarkable constipation. After my first heart attack I had some morphine and didn't evacuate for 4 days afterwards.

Posted by: Comrade Zombie Arthur at October 31, 2010 10:40 PM (1m1XX)

28 hope Michonne shows up sooner rather than later (like the comic)

Posted by: The Dude at October 31, 2010 10:41 PM (Ig1Wo)

29 Quilly and others: Go to: http://whoe2010.blogspot.com/ It's posted and it tells you how to by past megavideo to stream it.

Posted by: Moi at October 31, 2010 11:01 PM (Ez4Ql)

30 Been thinking about this lots and the first thing I'm getting is a "cow-catcher" for whatever vehicle I'm driving in. Ya know when you gotta cut through the zombie horde and stuff. Made with slick metal not bars cuz the zombies can grab on and drag for miles, just a'hitchin' a ride.

Posted by: Kelly at October 31, 2010 11:27 PM (cQhQZ)

31 All IV and no food makes Jack poop shy. All IV and no food makes Jack poop shy. All IV and no food makes Jack poop shy. All IV and no food makes Jack poop shy. All IV and no food makes Jack poop shy. All IV and no food makes Jack poop shy. All IV and no food makes Jack poop shy. All IV and no food makes Jack poop shy....

Posted by: J. Torrance at October 31, 2010 11:35 PM (23kaI)

32 @Russ said" having Bob Newhart wake up next to Suzanne Pleshette and say "Honey, I just had the weirdest dream about zombies". I would cut them slack for that one.)"

I would only if it were Suzanne Plesette from 1974 and she were naked.

Posted by: Danby at October 31, 2010 11:36 PM (6apnJ)

33 @15 - Yeah, I saw that subplot coming from a mile away. 

Posted by: Buddy Bizarre at October 31, 2010 11:51 PM (LsDrW)

34

> Dude wakes up in a hospital after a coma of indeterminate length during a zombie outbreak, and he's not hip deep in his own waste products?

I fasted once for 16 days.  No food intake, only water and coffee, black, no sugar.

After the second day, I no longer passed solid waste.

So a guy in a hospital bed for however long this Rick the Cop was wouldn't be covered with his  waste either, based on my experience.

Now the water intake/consumption is another issue.  Humans can only survive a few days without water under normal conditions.  So even if they hooked him up to a 1000cc bag of saline solution, he'd only last a few more days before secumbing to dehydration.

Although while unconscious, your water intake would probably go way down.  Terry Schivo lasted what, almost two weeks after they shut off her food and water supply?

Of course, she was...dead at the end of her ordeal.

So perhaps a unconscious guy / coma guy could last about 7 days without food or water and still wake up and be somewhat ambulatory.

Disclosure:  I didn't watch this episode, although I wish I had.

 

Posted by: ed at November 01, 2010 12:33 AM (Zsqn4)

35 Does anyone know where I can watch this on the internet? AND in the Philippines? Hulu and AMC both block their content here.

Thanks!

Posted by: Timothy S. Carlson at November 01, 2010 01:14 AM (u2dhQ)

36

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 04:01 AM (Ez4Ql)

Thanks moi.  I'm watching it right now.

Posted by: ed at November 01, 2010 01:14 AM (Zsqn4)

37

Posted by: Timothy S. Carlson at November 01, 2010 06:14 AM (u2dhQ)

See comment #33 for an answer.

Posted by: ed at November 01, 2010 01:15 AM (Zsqn4)

38 Seawater will not, I repeat NOT, melt zombies.

Posted by: Zombie Dom DeLuise, Triffids are delicious with butter and garlic at November 01, 2010 01:26 AM (3KOAY)

Turns out that fresh water doesn't dissolve aliens, either.  I was desperate for an ending when I wrote that one -- and then Day of the Triffids came on AMC, and I figured, why not?

Posted by: M. Night Shylamaramadingdong at November 01, 2010 01:23 AM (9NXZJ)

39 Maraming salamat po! (thank you very much!)

Posted by: Timothy S. Carlson at November 01, 2010 01:24 AM (u2dhQ)

40

Turns out that fresh water doesn't dissolve aliens, either.  I was desperate for an ending when I wrote that one -- and then Day of the Triffids came on AMC, and I figured, why not?

Posted by: M. Night Shylamaramadingdong at November 01, 2010 06:23 AM (9NXZJ)

Salt water will melt (dissolve) aliens in 'Alien Nation'

Posted by: Timothy S. Carlson at November 01, 2010 01:26 AM (u2dhQ)

41 For what it's worth...I believe I can answer your # 3 detail/query.

As a reader of the graphic novel from which it's based, the zombies in The Walking Dead are, to use a term coined by Alfred Hitchcock, a "MacGuffin".

(MacGuffin [sometimes McGuffin or maguffin] - "a plot element that catches the viewers' attention or drives the plot )

The story is about the humans trying (and increasingly failing) to survive in a world where the amenities are dwindling fast, where things that once were taken for granted are now a treasured rarity, and the basic civility (and sanity) of modern man is pushed to the breaking point.

If the series is anything like the books (and I hope it is!) then anybody who is eagerly awaiting a detailed explanation as to the origin of the zombie menace will probably be disappointed...they aren't the focus of the story.
And they might never be the focus, either.

Posted by: Xian Do at November 01, 2010 01:42 AM (MQlzc)

42 Addendum:

As for The Walking Dead?

If the series is indeed like the books, then the title isn't referring to the zombies at all...it's referring to the survivors.

Posted by: Xian Do at November 01, 2010 01:48 AM (dxxkS)

43

Salt water will melt (dissolve) aliens in 'Alien Nation'

Posted by: Timothy S. Carlson at November 01, 2010 06:26 AM (u2dhQ)

I can accept salt water having corrosive effects.  But rain water?

Posted by: stuiec at November 01, 2010 01:57 AM (9NXZJ)

44 Take a look at the opening scenes from "The Quiet Earth" (1985), another 'wake up and find everything gone to  hell'.  introduction. Almost scene-for-scene recreated in '28 Days Later', down to the wide shot of the guy laying in bed with his junk exposed.

Posted by: negentropy at November 01, 2010 02:29 AM (27KAF)

45 @ 41 Timothy S. Carlson: Were you able to see the show using HOE?

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 02:30 AM (Ez4Ql)

46 I can accept salt water having corrosive effects.  But rain water?

According to environmentalists, any rain water these days is so full of pollutants that it will dissolve anything. Mostly, though, it just melts their reputations.

Fresh snow Slurpees, anyone?

Posted by: Timothy S. Carlson at November 01, 2010 02:32 AM (u2dhQ)

47 49 @ 41 Timothy S. Carlson: Were you able to see the show using HOE?

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 07:30 AM (Ez4Ql)

Oh, yes, thank you again.

And they have 'Burn Notice'! You have made me a very happy man

Posted by: Timothy S. Carlson at November 01, 2010 02:34 AM (u2dhQ)

48 @51 Tim: You're welcome. I don't own a television but spend a lot of time watching tv on the internet which is self defeating but at least free. Here are some other sites you should be aware of: http://www.casttv.com http://www.surfthechannel.com/ http://www.dlsite.org/

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 02:44 AM (Ez4Ql)

49

Here is a topic for discussion:  Zombieism:  Is it caused by a virus?  Or from Hell filling up?

Me, I vote for that old creole saying:  "When there's no more room in hell, the dead will walk the earth."

Cuz all the attempts to explain zombieism thru science and biology seem ridiculous.

First, we exclude the 28 days later "Zombies".  They are actually living, and will eventually starve to death.

So how do we explain the zombies in The Walking Dead and the George Romero types via science?

We accept that they are dead.  No heart beat.  No blood pressure.  So, how are they able to walk?  In living creatures, you need the blood to flow to bring oxygen and nutrients to the cells, which then burns for energy.  No blood flow, no energy, no movement.

It doesn't matter what sort of virus is there, that virus isn't going to "power" a human form.  A human without flowing blood is like saying a car without a carbuerator or a fuel pump is going to be able to run.  It ain't happening.  It doesn't matter what additive to the gas you have, without the fuel pump to get the fuel/energy to the cylinders, that car isn't running.

So how do zombies actually work, since biologically they are impossible?

The old standby:  The supernatural.  It works for Ghosts and Vampires and Devils and Demons in movies.  It works for Zombies too.

Just my two cents.

The whole fast zombie vs slow zombie is another topic, but regardless, the only er..."rational" explaination for zombies is the supernatural.

And I'm talking about for movies and fiction.  I don't really believe in zombies, Ghosts and Vampires.  But they make great fiction.

Posted by: ed at November 01, 2010 02:57 AM (Zsqn4)

50

Also, at the end of the first episode of the walking dead, the zombies ate a horse. 

Eh... I figured zombies only "ate" because of their evil nature, and thus would only eat living people, not animals.  Certainly they wouldn't eat raw hamburger or corn or what not.

They just wanted to eat living people, not corpses.

But that's a smaller point. 

I can live with horse eating zombies.

 

Posted by: ed at November 01, 2010 03:10 AM (Zsqn4)

51 I thought it was fantastic.  Little bummed that it's only six episodes, but I'll enjoy every one.  I kept waiting and waiting for the black guy to pull the trigger on the missus.  "Shoot her!  SHOOT HER!!"

Posted by: Zombie Wyatt Earp at November 01, 2010 03:50 AM (zgZzy)

52 I watched it too Russ. Yeah, pretty good. I will watch the next episode if I can.

Posted by: maddogg at November 01, 2010 03:55 AM (OlN4e)

53 I'll have to check it out.  I was watching the other six-part zombie miniseries on IFC "The Dead Set".  Pretty good zombie comedy.  

Posted by: plum at November 01, 2010 03:56 AM (JW1Dv)

54 Reminded me ALOT of the BBC series "Survivors"...but with Zombies. Which was exactly what the BBC show needed to survive after two seasons.

Posted by: JDW at November 01, 2010 04:02 AM (uw+0A)

55 Maybe I'm just spoiled by finally having watched Zombieland, which was enormously entertaining... but if crap like this (and Mad Men, et al.) is now generally considered acceptable TV fare - or worse, "good entertainment" - then whatever happens tomorrow is moot.

Posted by: zombie goy at November 01, 2010 04:12 AM (AfU1B)

56 While several of my nitpicks have already been discussed (why wasn't he attacked when everybody else was, why didn't he die of dehydration) I have a few more:

Since when do you go into a coma from a gunshot wound to the abdomen? Some sort of head injury would be much more believable.

Why are there any lights working in the hospital at all? I can see no explanation for this other than it just looks creepy.

And if the electric is out, how do you have running water? I suppose you could posit a water tower/gravity fed system, but after this much time how much water would still be left in the tower assuming other people would be using water and the tank couldn't be refilled?

I'm not much of a zombie fan for reasons too numerous to mention, but I will probably watch this show to see if they have a different take on the genre.

Posted by: TobyTucker at November 01, 2010 04:13 AM (2Z6tq)

57

I like the idea of a series, I think most zombie movies leave more questions then answers.  And in this case the kind of zombie, Viral, slow moving and forgetful makes for a good kind of zombie for a series.  I have always felt that the supernatural, fast movie, super strong, smart zombies would be way too successful in their killing for anyone to survive long, may as well nuke the works and call it a movie, I dont waits my time watching such versions as it equates, in my mind, to a slasher flick and I really cant stand the stupidity in slasher flicks.

Now, as a hunter, I can say, these zombies would be quite easy to clear out with even just a little creativity.  As a prey, they are easy to attract which makes them easy to dispose of in large quantities.  In this show we are lead to believe there is a shortage of fuel.  I dont buy it.  Most positions in this show seem to have been overrun which mains unless the vehicles were left running, there should be lots of fuel sitting around in parked cars depending on how long the guy has been asleep, I dont see people exhausting the huge quantity of gas, propane that should be laying around.  Every BBQ grill is a bomb or a fuel supply for a flame thrower.  There should be LOTS of construction vehicles available.  A Bulldozer would make one hell of a street sweeper with a littlle cab armor.  Any lot surrounded with chain link turns into a great zombie trap as does any large warehouse or just about any other building for that matter.  Draw them in lock it up and set it on fire.  The only limiting factor is your imagination.  Once Rick get his bearings, this should be nothing more then a mop up for him.  As for food...pfft. Every street has a squirrel or a rabbit.

In a situation like this movie sets up, IMO, the walking dead are not your real concern, its the living...you can't trust'em

Posted by: Moemo at November 01, 2010 04:22 AM (jYoCE)

58

Considering how many hits with the bat it took to drop that one zombie, not using guns is going to entail a lot of risk.

I was thinking that baseball bat needed a nice big spike on the end.

Posted by: Dr. Heinz Doofenshmirtz at November 01, 2010 04:37 AM (//Bcg)

59

Saw it last night.  Fantastic.  I wasn't expecting Michelle Obama to make a cameo appearance though.  (she apparently plays the black survivor's wife).

Posted by: Brian at November 01, 2010 04:38 AM (1Jaio)

60

I watched the movie and liked it overall. I thought the best scene was the hospital setting.  Very creepy and disorienting.  What intrigued me was how the production staff wrangled the flies to be attracted to the dead bodies.

My quibble was that I did not like to see the graphic killing of the little zombie girl.  I've seen enough dead children and babies for real and could have done without that. 

Posted by: Retired Buckeye Cop at November 01, 2010 04:43 AM (S2+uh)

61

When they showed Atlanta deserted I said to myself, "get out of there dumbass".

Last words in the last scene in the show: "Hey dumbass... you in the tank".

Posted by: Dr. Heinz Doofenshmirtz at November 01, 2010 04:44 AM (//Bcg)

62 DEAD SET, a 5 part mini-series on IFC was excellent also.  Can't wait to see Walking Dead.

Posted by: ammobob at November 01, 2010 04:48 AM (KCsda)

63 The horse was still alive at the farm?How had the zombies missed him?

Posted by: steevy at November 01, 2010 04:49 AM (kYcNl)

64

@69

Obviously in a very rural area.  Low population density makes for a very small "zombie per square mile" ratio.  I got the impression that the farmer's wife had become a zombie, he killed her and then committed suicide.  He was still in full rigor mortis: so only dead for about 12 hours.

Long story short:  no zombies and the horse had been fed as recently as yesterday in movie time.

Posted by: Retired Buckeye Cop at November 01, 2010 05:02 AM (S2+uh)

65 Feh. I live in Los Angeles. You call them zombies. I call them Jerry Brown's base.

Posted by: richard mcenroe at November 01, 2010 05:03 AM (LFAxM)

66 I loved the first ep.  Still can't figure out why he'd leave a motorized vehicle to ride a horse.  And as a former horse owner, I got really pissed off that the horse had to die. 

I also like the fact that it's shot in the Atlanta area.  Looking forward to seeing some recognizable landmarks.

Posted by: Jane D'oh at November 01, 2010 05:04 AM (UOM48)

67 "Dude wakes up in a hospital after a coma of indeterminate length during a zombie outbreak, and he's not hip deep in his own waste products? Now maybe we're going to find out in some future episode that a particularly dedicated nursing staff stuck around until the last possible moment providing care for a vegetable, but I think this is probably a case of "movie magic..." You mean sort of like decomposing dead matter coming back to life due to a mysterious virus and wanting nothing more than to eat living tissue of the same species? Yeah, that kind of nonsensical shit makes for silly television.

Posted by: CoolCzech at November 01, 2010 05:09 AM (tJjm/)

68 Rick didn't fire off the magnum inside the tank.  He borrowed the dead army dude's .45, which woke up army dude, and used his own weapon on him.

Granted, not much of an improvement in acoustics firing a .45 inside the tank, but it wasn't the magnum.

Posted by: NavyspyII at November 01, 2010 05:12 AM (1jSiQ)

69 Jeebus! I can't believe you guys are more interested in poop and whether zombies will eat dead flesh, animals or are limited to the living.

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 05:18 AM (Ez4Ql)

70 "I assume that Rick would be well aware of the consequences of firing a Magnum revolver in a confined space like the inside of an M1 Abrams tank."

Im pretty sure he was more concerned with the consequences of "being eaten alive by a freakin zombie" in a confined space like the inside of an M1 Abrams tank.

Ive been reading the comic for a month or so in preparation for the series, the show seems like a good translation, too good in fact. The book was way to dark, while I enjoyed what I read, I basically couldn't bear to finish it.

Posted by: LiberalNitemare at November 01, 2010 05:19 AM (09Qdq)

71 As far as the length of time in the hospital bed, didn't anyone catch the flowers left by "concerned partner" (the foreshadow to that one hit like a 2X4 to the forehead) while in morphine enhanced dream state? They were dry by the time he awoke, which would have taken quite a while.

As far as him not being eaten, he had to push some debris away to get out of the door, so maybe someone kinda barricaded him in.  Plus it sounds like the zombies go away if you are quiet, and you don't get much quieter than being in a coma.

All in all, a good start to the series. Big Darabont fan, and I hope he does well with this one. I notice some of Frank's friends are in the refugee group, while Bauer's old junkie girlfriend from 24 is also in this, as the wife/ex-wife/widow. Can't wait for the Zombieland-type Escalade vehicle to make an appearance. I was hoping for the tank, but that isn't going to come true, from the looks of things.

Posted by: Jay in Ames at November 01, 2010 05:20 AM (UEEex)

72 #73 - thank you.

Relax. It's a show. There's always going to be some measure of implausibility in any fiction. Especially freakin' zombie fiction.

It's like asking "How come aliens all speak English?" Because showing people pantomiming and slowly learning each other's language is boring. So just assume it.

Posted by: schizuki at November 01, 2010 05:23 AM (M+lbD)

73 Watching it online now..

Been good so far.. 

Posted by: Dave C at November 01, 2010 05:25 AM (poJjg)

74

Is the OP the one who was recommending "Haven?", cause that one sucked big time.

I do love zombies, though.

Posted by: JackT at November 01, 2010 05:27 AM (ga+7c)

75 I loved it. More surprising, my husband liked it. He is the horror fan and his comment as we sat down to watch it was "the first green zombie I see, I'm done".

The zombie make-up was well done, the f/x were great, the blood spatter was awesome.

Like Russ, I also wondered about why he wasn't laying in a mess of his own waste, but you have to file that under the reason that heroes never have to pee or take a dump, unless it's written in as some sort of plot device.

I know the writer's have to stretch out a story arc, but I was bothered by the fact that our hero never asked "so, what the fuck happened?" I think that would have been my first question once the walker situation was explained to me.

And, I knew what was gonna happen to the horse as soon as I saw it.

Overall, I'm hooked.

Posted by: mpur in Texas (kicking Mexico's ass since 1836) at November 01, 2010 05:33 AM (WKRYJ)

76 74 It was an M9 9MM..

Posted by: steevy at November 01, 2010 05:34 AM (kYcNl)

77 81 All the headshots were CGI I think.

Posted by: steevy at November 01, 2010 05:35 AM (kYcNl)

78 If you want to be nitpickers, answer this: Why didn't he find some shoes asap instead of walking on broken glass and metal and never getting cut? Why was he wearing boxers? Hospitals always make sure you are but nakid under that stupid gown so they can access your weiner and starfish.

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 05:35 AM (Ez4Ql)

79 I'm not sure M1 Abrams has a belly hatch either,pretty sure early versions didn't at least.Only minor quibbles,I enjoyed the show.

Posted by: steevy at November 01, 2010 05:36 AM (kYcNl)

80 How do zombies track you down? By sight only? Can you smell the stink of being alive? Hearing? Smell blood? What?!!!!

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 05:36 AM (Ez4Ql)

81 As far as him not being eaten, he had to push some debris away to get out of the door, so maybe someone kinda barricaded him in.  Plus it sounds like the zombies go away if you are quiet, and you don't get much quieter than being in a coma.


When he woke up, there was another gurney pushed in front of his door he had to shove aside. 

One question.  Why were the dead outside the hospital dead -dead and not walking dead? 

If you die- die before getting infected, you don't turn into the zombie? 


Posted by: Dave C at November 01, 2010 05:37 AM (poJjg)

82 84 LOL I noticed that too.Also he doesn't look for a flashlight,just uses matches.I would have dressed,gotten a weapon and a light but disorientation explains alot.

Posted by: steevy at November 01, 2010 05:37 AM (kYcNl)

83 I loved the first ep.  Still can't figure out why he'd leave a motorized vehicle to ride a horse.  And as a former horse owner, I got really pissed off that the horse had to die. 

He was out of gas. And apparently wasn't willing to go inside the farm house to find the keys to the old truck. One thing about the horse, he was able to ride it in without having to worry about finding more gas.

I like I said, as soon as I saw the horse, I knew what was gonna happen.

Notice there were no dogs around? I was thinking about it and came to the conclusion that if there were a zombie apocalypse and the walkers were attracted to noise, my dog would be the first to go because she'd be barking her dumbass head off.

Posted by: mpur in Texas (kicking Mexico's ass since 1836) at November 01, 2010 05:37 AM (WKRYJ)

84 87 I think those were "put down" walkers.I noticed they had head wounds,they were probably collecting them for disposal before things got completely out of hand.

Posted by: steevy at November 01, 2010 05:38 AM (kYcNl)

85 One question.  Why were the dead outside the hospital dead -dead and not walking dead? 

Those were the walkers that were "put down". If you looked closely they all had head shots. Apparently there was an organized response to the zombie menace which failed.

Posted by: mpur in Texas (kicking Mexico's ass since 1836) at November 01, 2010 05:40 AM (WKRYJ)

86 91 Jinx.Look at 90.

Posted by: steevy at November 01, 2010 05:43 AM (kYcNl)

87 I keep going back to the Cracked list of why Zombie outbreaks would fail. 

http://tinyurl.com/2fe6wnu


And the reason why it can happen... 


http://tinyurl.com/28yq4x



Posted by: Dave C at November 01, 2010 05:45 AM (poJjg)

88 They needed the new character from Boardwalk Empires. He could take them out with headshots.

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 05:49 AM (Ez4Ql)

89 When the main character got shot by the third fleeing felon to escape the car, WTF? Haven't we all seen enough cop chases on TV to know cops always clear a car before letting their guard down?

Posted by: ktnxbai *cough* at November 01, 2010 05:58 AM (V0Gyi)

90 Okay, I feel bad for the horse.

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 06:00 AM (Ez4Ql)

91 At @74 In the zombie stories by David Wellington, the zombies eat anything living, including plant and vegetable matter. they are drawn to the 'life force' of anything living. The larger the objects life force, the stronger the attraction of the zombies. Hence they go batshit crazy for humans and animals, but will strip the bark off and try to eat trees, grass, etc if nothing else living is available.

Posted by: catmman at November 01, 2010 06:01 AM (DTzwU)

92 97 In the original Night of the Living Dead the zombies are shown eating insects as well.

Posted by: steevy at November 01, 2010 06:03 AM (kYcNl)

93 He was carrying a Colt with an eight-inch barrel, unlikely for a sheriff, in a holster for a six-inch barrel revolver, lame as an extra in a spaghetti western.

Posted by: SurferDoc at November 01, 2010 06:04 AM (RKpGM)

94 AS to waste from a person in the hospital. I spent some time in the hospital this year, twice actually. If a person has had major surgery, with no major food intake, a person will not generate solid waste for several days, even after resumption of eating solid food. If there is no solid food intake, then the body just won't create solid waste. I had bowel surgery and didn't pass anything solid for three days after I started eating again. As for fluid, I didn't see a catheter, so yeah, he probably would have been laying in his own urine, but it depends on how long it had been since he had any fluid. A large IV bag on a slow drip can last for 12, 18 hours depending. They showed him sucking down water from the bathroom in his room after he woke up, so it had obviously been days since he had any fluid intake in which case there wouldn't have been much, if any urine. Also, someone had placed/wedged a gurney in front of his door, so if he was quiet, a zombie wouldn't have tried to get into his room. At least someone tried to protect him at some point, knowing he was defenseless. This prompted me to tell my wife while we were watching this that no one has ever addressed or shown what happens in the maternity ward during a zombieocalypse. What is left to the imagination is more horrible than anything they could show I suppose.

Posted by: catmman at November 01, 2010 06:14 AM (DTzwU)

95 @99 Yeah, some weapon peculiarities. I thought it was a bit weird for the guy to have a big honkin revolver when everyone else had autos and shotguns. Rick told one of the deputies to be sure the safety was off. The guy had a Glock. Glocks don't have exterior safeties. And he shot the guy in the tank with the revolver, not the M9 he took off him. But it was a spur of the moment kind of thing, he was panicked, he reacted, not thinking about the confined space. And did anyone notice the zombies retain at least some residual memory or instinct? The little girl zombie stopping to pick up the teddy bear at the beginning. The wife of the black guy turning the door knob of the house she had died in, seemingly recognizing the place. And she apparently comes back on a regular basis. Remember the kid telling his dad "she's back"? Anyone else get creeped out when the zombies got down on their hands and knees, looking for Rick, making sure he was under the tank, before crawling under it after him?

Posted by: catmman at November 01, 2010 06:23 AM (DTzwU)

96 When the main character got shot by the third fleeing felon to escape the car, WTF? Haven't we all seen enough cop chases on TV to know cops always clear a car before letting their guard down?

When they got call, the dispatcher said they were in pursuit of two suspects.

No excuse, but the cops had no reason to believe there was a third guy.

Posted by: mpur in Texas (kicking Mexico's ass since 1836) at November 01, 2010 06:24 AM (WKRYJ)

97 This prompted me to tell my wife while we were watching this that no one has ever addressed or shown what happens in the maternity ward during a zombieocalypse. What is left to the imagination is more horrible than anything they could show I suppose.

Arrrgh! I hadn't even considered that.

Posted by: mpur in Texas (kicking Mexico's ass since 1836) at November 01, 2010 06:28 AM (WKRYJ)

98 101 Don't some police departments require manual safety on their weapons?I'M pretty sure the manufacturers will put one on if asked even if it is unnecessary.Yeah,I noticed that too,and the barrel being to long for his holster.

Posted by: steevy at November 01, 2010 06:33 AM (kYcNl)

99 here is a small point as well:

Okay the end of the world scenario, world in disarray, and the landscaping still looks pretty good.  I mean, when rick walked through that park to dispatch the half woman zombie thing, the grass was not overgrown.  it looked better than my own yard,,,.so maybe those zombies are doing jobs non zombies just won't do.

Posted by: biff at November 01, 2010 06:38 AM (PYHRj)

100 Okay the end of the world scenario, world in disarray, and the landscaping still looks pretty good.  I mean, when rick walked through that park to dispatch the half woman zombie thing, the grass was not overgrown.  it looked better than my own yard,,,.so maybe those zombies are doing jobs non zombies just won't do.

Yeah I noticed that as well, which made me think the passage of time wasn't all that long.

Posted by: mpur in Texas (kicking Mexico's ass since 1836) at November 01, 2010 06:45 AM (WKRYJ)

101 John Wyndham' s 'Day of the Triffids' is the original for 'hero wakes up in hospital to find post-apocalypse' plots. That book in the 50s has been hugely influential in British SF. The early 1980s TV mini-series was the closest to the novel, taking place over a period of nearly a decade. All told, I believe there has been four versions, including one just a couple of years ago.

This is the same guy who wrote 'The Midwich Cuckoos' aka Village of the Damned with the creepy blonde superchildren.

Posted by: epobirs at November 01, 2010 06:46 AM (cSH12)

102
Since when do you go into a coma from a gunshot wound to the abdomen? Some sort of head injury would be much more believable.




Complications from anesthesia.

Posted by: IllTemperedCur at November 01, 2010 06:56 AM (DZVrI)

103 104 101 Don't some police departments require manual safety on their weapons?I'M pretty sure the manufacturers will put one on if asked even if it is unnecessary.Yeah,I noticed that too,and the barrel being to long for his holster.

I'm not a cop and I noticed that.  Makes me wonder if the guy is a deputy from Mayberry or something.

(Watched it online but was that the same guy Rick shot when he showed up as a zombie later on?)

Posted by: Dave C at November 01, 2010 07:00 AM (poJjg)

104 How come there are no threads on Boardwalk Empire? It's a great show though the past couple of episodes are too tits, whorehouses, and lezbo heavy.

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 07:03 AM (Ez4Ql)

105 #108 Also blood lost, sepsis, etc.

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 07:03 AM (Ez4Ql)

106 In the world of "Walking Dead" a silencer would be worth its weight in gold.

Also, glad to see others have chimed in the debunk Russ's nitpick about Rick's state waking from a coma.

Posted by: Chairman LMAO at November 01, 2010 07:04 AM (9eDbm)

107 #106 - Judging by the flowers, it wasn't. The flowers were dried out - not just dead.

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 07:05 AM (Ez4Ql)

108 I had a serious surgery a few years ago. When the body is traumatized the whole bathroom thing shuts down. It took four days for any gas to show up and the nothing solid happened until a week later. But I have one question. Why assume that Rick was in a coma? When you're on morphine you sleep like the quiet dead for days.

Posted by: daisy at November 01, 2010 07:07 AM (+JrTK)

109 Another thing about being in a coma, you have to be reposition every couple of hours otherwise you get bed sores. Also, your muscle breaks down and the broken down muscle molecules are too big and slice up your kidneys sending you into kidney failure. That's why old people who fall and can't move for hours or days are in big trouble. Hell, just lay down and don't move for 4 hours and see how you feel.

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 07:10 AM (Ez4Ql)

110 #114: Because the show writers say he awoke from a coma?

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 07:11 AM (Ez4Ql)

Posted by: IllTemperedCur at November 01, 2010 07:21 AM (DZVrI)

112 #117: Don't you have a business? What precautions have you taken?

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 07:24 AM (Ez4Ql)

113 Since when do you go into a coma from a gunshot wound to the abdomen? Some sort of head injury would be much more believable.

Septic shock will do that, and that is very possible with a abdominal injury.

Posted by: ed at November 01, 2010 07:34 AM (Zsqn4)

114 Aside from the flowers, you also have the beard. It's possible that a nurse or his wife had been shaving him throughout his coma until things went to hell in the hospital. A beard like that can take what, a week, two weeks, depending on the man? He was clearly dehydrated, considering he went straight for water as soon as possible, but he was still hooked up to a bag that could have been kept active due to a generator or whatever was still powering the hospital lights.

I'd forgotten about the slight barricading of his door. That actually does make a ton more sense for his survival and for why they didn't take him with them. He'd be dead weight but at least by hiding him, they were giving him a better chance.

Still, there needs to be a better explanation for his wife and partner. Why would they leave him? And if it's only been a few weeks max (which seems likely), that's not really a lot of time to move on and get Carl a new daddy. I get that tragedy changes people, but WTF. Why not at least make sure he's dead first?

But really, I guess my biggest (minor) gripe is about the zombies themselves. They really do seem pretty harmless unless in huge groups, in which case, how'd they get huge groups? The incubation period is likely key, as healthy people would bring in the infected without realizing it, but even then, with a coordinated effort (which they clearly started in the hospital) it just doesn't seem likely that any major city could be overrun like this. Let's face it, if you were trying to spread a disease as far as possible, you wouldn't choose bites or scratches as the method of infection, even with fit individuals spreading it.

All in all, great looking show. It needs some suspension of disbelief, but so do all zombie films.

Posted by: Esthier at November 01, 2010 07:46 AM (ye6fm)

115 Glocks, to the best of my knowledge do not have and cannot have exterior safeties. Maybe i'm wrong, but I don't think so. The 'safety' is on the trigger itself. It's called a "safe action" pistol. I have a 1st Gen Glock 23, no exterior safety. Maybe you can get them, but I don't know for sure.

Posted by: catmman at November 01, 2010 07:48 AM (DTzwU)

116 Yep. I dug it.

Posted by: TheJane at November 01, 2010 07:56 AM (9Blbi)

117 If it is spread by blood or saliva, eventually it will be spread by fleas carried by rodents and other animals.

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 07:57 AM (Ez4Ql)

118 I thought no way can this just be 6 episodes. Too much money sunk into it and too big of a hit. So, I looked it up and there is a second season which will be 13 episodes.

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 07:59 AM (Ez4Ql)

119 #123, interesting, but that's never addressed in these types of movies.

Still, they were able to maintain some sort of control during the Black Plague.

Posted by: Esthier at November 01, 2010 08:02 AM (ye6fm)

120 #125: That's because these movies never cover a very long period and the CDC is always the first to go. In 5 years, a third of the population of Europe died. They controlled it by self-flagellation. I wouldn't recommend it. Fleas were dormant in winter.

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 08:15 AM (Ez4Ql)

121

Did this series make it clear as to what leads to being made a zombie?  It specifically states that getting bitten by a zombie means you will die and become a zombie.

But what about if you die of something like a knife in the heart?  In George Romero's "Night of the Living Dead" and "Dawn of the Dead", dying from anything led to being re-animated.  So even people who died of natural causes ended up becoming zombies.

Is that the case in The Walking Dead?  Or has that not yet been clarified?

Posted by: ed at November 01, 2010 08:23 AM (Zsqn4)

122 123 If it is spread by blood or saliva, eventually it will be spread by fleas carried by rodents and other animals.   Sounds like a good reason to bring back DDT.  Just to be on the safe side.

Posted by: ed at November 01, 2010 08:25 AM (Zsqn4)

123 Flame throwers, too!

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 08:30 AM (Ez4Ql)

124

  As far as the mechanics of reanimation goes, IIRC Romero's original movie (and also the underrated "Return of the Living Dead from 1984) involved a strange radiation/chemical compound that caused ALL dead flesh to reanimate.

 

  The best I can tell from this pilot episode, if you're bitten or scratched by a zombie, you die from a massive fever and then reanimate as a zombie.  Non-zombie deaths don't result in reanimation (at least not so far). 

 

  If you look at what Max Brooks did with "World War Z", the reanimation was caused by the "solanum" virus.  This virus had to infect a living organism through blood/saliva contact with zombies before it killed the host and then caused them to reanimate.  He makes it clear that the flesh of zombies is toxic to living organisms.  Dogs who bite zombies don't turn into zombies, they just die from the toxicity (it wasn't covered in WWZ, but in a later graphic novel, it was said that people who consumed the flesh of zombies died and were NOT reanimated).  This would explain why the infection wasn't spread by fleas/ticks or mosquitos - they apparently died as soon as they bit a zombie. 

Posted by: Russ from Winterset at November 01, 2010 08:33 AM (/MEFr)

125 So, what happens if zombies don't get any lifeforce? Who is going to feed the zombie babies? Or a zombie who can't walk or crawl? Do they just die for real?

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 08:37 AM (Ez4Ql)

126 The impression I got was that the hospital was recently evacuated.  He may have had minimal care for a while, which explains the beard, lack of any waste products and the fact that his body wasn't completely beaten up by bedsores.  It would also explain why the hospital still had power: their emergency generator was still running.

The wife and son were probably pushed to evacuate early on, or at least get out of town.  Perhaps to a relative's house.  And it was obvious from the conversation between the two that the hero's buddy had a thing for the wife.  Combine that with some marital trouble, and she may have already moved on.  However, they do seem to be trying to hide it, so they may know that it's "too soon" to be seen together.


Posted by: Alex at November 01, 2010 08:37 AM (aAsSp)

127 There is at least one aftermarket company that makes an external safety for Glocks, but Deputy Dawg thumbed the slide release.

In NotLD, the re-animating factor was a radiation cloud the Earth was passing thru.

Flame throwers are a bad idea because ol' Zed will still be stomping around while on fire and could very likely set your shit on fire.  The more zombies that are burning, the faster the fire can be spread.

Posted by: FORGER - Racist Czar at November 01, 2010 08:39 AM (Lvcpc)

128
I'm pretty sure that the Glock/safety thing in the episode was a goof.

But you definitely can have Glocks retrofitted with an external safety from third-party companies, and I believe that Glock has occasionally produced external safety versions of their guns for specific law enforcement customers.

Posted by: IllTemperedCur at November 01, 2010 08:41 AM (DZVrI)

129 Or has that not yet been clarified?

It hasn't. The only thing we've been told is that bites and scratches can spread it, or rather, that these will make the person sick and then die and come back as a zombie, meaning there's an added threat to anyone alive and sick. But there's no evidence yet that the sick person can then transmit the virus by anything other than biting or scratching. We know a man lost his wife but kept her in the house until she came back and he knew he couldn't shoot her, but he and his son seem to be clean.

I like the explanation on why fleas and other insects might not be spreading it. Seems as plausible as anything else.

Posted by: Esthier at November 01, 2010 08:55 AM (ye6fm)

130

it looked better than my own yard,,,.so maybe those zombies are doing jobs non zombies just won't do.

Goes back to the residual memory thing.   Some of the zombies have to be Mexican.

Here is a potentially excellent but quiet anti-zombie weapon:

http://tinyurl.com/24jfb2g


 

Posted by: Speller at November 01, 2010 08:57 AM (J74Py)

131

  As far as the mechanics of reanimation goes, IIRC Romero's original movie (and also the underrated "Return of the Living Dead from 1984) involved a strange radiation/chemical compound that caused ALL dead flesh to reanimate.

  If you look at what Max Brooks did with "World War Z", the reanimation was caused by the "solanum" virus. 

Yeah, but these are all patently implausable/impossible.  Zombies are dead.  No heartbeat.  No blood flow.  No oxygen and nutrients carried to cells for energy to move.

Just like a car.  No fuel pump means car doesn't go, no matter what else is done to the car.

Which is why the only explanation that makes any sense is the "Dawn of the Dead" explanation. 

"When there's no more room in Hell, the dead will walk the earth."

I can't buy a virus making the dead walk.  Or some lowlevel (or even super highlevel) radiation doing the same.

I can buy end of times / gates of hell opening up.

Posted by: ed at November 01, 2010 08:57 AM (Zsqn4)

132   Yeah, it's plausible, but I hate mixing zombie genres.  Apparently, we need some sort of National Organization of Zombie Standardization that will lay down some ground rules for any future zombie plotlines to insure compatibility between movies.

Posted by: Russ from Winterset at November 01, 2010 09:00 AM (/MEFr)

133 I've read about half of TWD graphic novels. Our friend Rick is in for much worse stuff down the pike - if the series takes it that far. I would answer the questions about people dying of causes other than zombie infection coming back or not as zombies, but it might be a spoiler so I won't. As far as external safeties on glocks, didn't know anyone made them. Seems kind of superfluous. If you wanted a gun with an external safety, there are cheaper alternatives. Just get a gun with an external safety. Whatever. Just a minor point people other than those in the know would notice anyway.

Posted by: catmman at November 01, 2010 09:01 AM (DTzwU)

134
Yeah, it's plausible, but I hate mixing zombie genres.  Apparently, we need some sort of National Organization of Zombie Standardization that will lay down some ground rules for any future zombie plotlines to insure compatibility between movies.




Now THIS is an appropriate use of NEA grant money.

Posted by: IllTemperedCur at November 01, 2010 09:02 AM (DZVrI)

135

#138

Heh.  It's just a minor tick I'm picking at here.  I just don't like the virus approach, because it takes away some of the dread. If it's a virus, we can cure it. 

But the end of times?  Even if we do erradicate all the zombies, the problem of corpses re-animating never goes away.  The dread and danger and estrangement from God / nature never ends.

I'm not trying to push a religeon on people here, I just think that scientifically and cinematically, the virus/radiation thing is less effective.

But to each their own.

Posted by: ed at November 01, 2010 09:05 AM (Zsqn4)

136

As far as external safeties on glocks, didn't know anyone made them. Seems kind of superfluous.

Most people think the Glock scene at the beginning was a goof.  I agree.  However, gun smiths will install an external manual safety on a Glock if you want to pay for it.  Not saying you should, just sayin' you could.

Also, there are some aftermarket plasic pieces that will fit in the Glock trigger guard, so you can't shoot unless you pop the plasic piece out.  Same disclaimer as above about should vs could.

They were called Saf-T Blok if I remember correctly.

But again, I think the writers just made a goof there.  Plus, what cop goes arround with a pistol without a round chambered?

Posted by: ed at November 01, 2010 09:11 AM (Zsqn4)

137

My wife and I have been waiting for weeks for "The Walking Dead". We haven't had a show to watch together since SG: Universe. We were both impressed with "The Walking Dead" and we're looking forward to the remaining episodes. As far as putting the missus down when the time comes, my wife says just be a man and put a round in her head.

Posted by: Gov'tknowsbest at November 01, 2010 09:13 AM (4p2tP)

138 #133: We need the flamethrowers to kill the zombie fleas and to prevent them from spreading the zombie plague.

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 09:16 AM (Ez4Ql)

139 It is a virus or bacteria transmitted by biting or scratching, i.e., blood. The fleas bite the zombie or the infected person on his way to becoming a zombie an become infected. The fleas bite rats and are carried by rats and bite humans transferring the virus/bacteria through their saliva/blood to the healthy person. Don't they teach science anymore?

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 09:22 AM (Ez4Ql)

140 It was good, and was able to *use* the source material without feeling that it was limited by it.  Comics often move at such an intense pace just because of the nature of the medium that you can often lose character development that has to happen very slowly in a filmed medium.  Comics can go 70, 80 issues and, during that time, develop a character.  It often takes more "time," I guess, because you don't have live action that allows a character to develop, often, without dialogue.  Nearly everything in comics has to be done through dialogue along the same lines - and non-dialogue character development, if it takes place too fast (say, even within the same issue versus over several) seems jarring and unrealistic.  If that is a term that can be used in reference to comic books.

Oh, and for the Bob & Doug McKenzie reference?  "Psst . . . act, act!"

the sinner,

Patrick

Posted by: Patrick at November 01, 2010 09:32 AM (+HRJG)

141 Somebody should write a zombie handbook.

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 09:33 AM (Ez4Ql)

142 #137, what if by "dead" they only mean in a vegetative state, with only base cognitive functions. Obviously if they're still walking around their hearts are pumping. They do still bleed when bludgeoned or shot through the head.

Posted by: Esthier at November 01, 2010 09:49 AM (ye6fm)

143 Anybody watch Dexter? I loved the crime scene re-enactment by Matsuka.

Posted by: Moi at November 01, 2010 09:56 AM (Ez4Ql)

144

148 #137, what if by "dead" they only mean in a vegetative state, with only base cognitive functions?

Hi Esthier,

Then I'd say they shouldn't call them dead.  They should call them vegetative.  Which I think is kind of a cop-out.

The thing that is so creepy to me about zombies is the fact that they are so far removed from what is natural and right.  They are the un-dead.

Not plague victims.  Not people suffering from impulse control issues.  They are zombies risen from the grave.

Now look, I saw and liked 28 Days Later.  Those ragers were scary as hell.  But it was the fear of getting violently killed.  (Similar to getting chased by gang bangers.) But if you put one in a hospital bed strapped down, he's just a sick patient.  Dangerous, yes.  But still just a patient.

But an undead zombie?  Even if you have it strapped down on a gurney, the implacable "wrongness" of it is in-escapeable.  You can cut away every part of the skull and brain except for the brain stem and it doesn't die (George Romero's Dawn of the Dead).  You can even cut off the head, and the eyes will still move and it will try to bite.  The flesh is cold and rotting and peeling away.

Even secured on a gurney, a zombie gives me the creeps.

Now as far as I know (and I really don't know much), the whole "virus explanation" is fairly recent, only in the last decade or so.  But when I was a kid, I don't remember this sort of explanation.

Anyway, that's my two cents.

The ragers in 28 Days Later don't cause me to get all grumpy and start muttering about how those aren't real zombies. Because right there in the dialog, they tell you it is a virus that just removes their impuse control.  They still breath and pump blood.  Totally alive.  And doomed to starve to death because the virus kills their ability to think at a level that lets them gather food besides just raging.

Which is cool.

But I saw that lady in the park in The Walking Dead drag herself acorss the lawn with everything below her belly button ripped away.  She was dragging a piece of intestine and a leg bone and her face was falling apart.  She had been like that for weeks.  I don't see any sort of virus or vegetative state that can explain that.

Just my two cents.

Cheers.

Posted by: ed at November 01, 2010 10:19 AM (Zsqn4)

145 Er, actually, I think in 28 Days Later, it was a bacteria, not a virus.  Sorry, my bad.  But the point is the same.

Posted by: ed at November 01, 2010 10:24 AM (Zsqn4)

146 They do still bleed when bludgeoned or shot through the head.

Posted by: Esthier at November 01, 2010 02:49 PM (ye6fm)

Well, I'm not a pathologist, so I don't know how long it takes the blood in a cadaver to congeal.  I'd say that any blood from a shot zombie is blood that just hasn't congealed and the shock of the bullet / baseball bat is what makes this blood splatter.  There will be no arterial bleeding because there is no pulse and blood pressure.  According to my "zombie cannon" (heh) I suppose that an older zombie that is dried up should have less splatter than a freshly made zombie.

Posted by: ed at November 01, 2010 10:32 AM (Zsqn4)

147

All IV and no food...

Having worked in a hospital, you will not have solid waste after a couple days and his urine would have evaporated in a day if the climate control was still working in the hospital. I did notice his IV was dark meaning the battery had died completely. Speaking of batteries, the door he opened to get out should have sounded, ah nit picking, maybe maintainence wasn't as good as it should have been.

He could have had a catheter in and when he was disoriented, he pulled out his catheter and IV out. I've seen that many times, it's not impossible, just very VERY uncomfortable. Possibly, it could be pulled out without significant trauma, and also as catheters aren't made of steel, they are checked and/or changed every so often to make sure they aren't deteriorating or becoming deflated. Him pulling out his catheter would have been an interesting scene!

The emergency light was on in the hallway by the nursing station but other emergency power was off. I think this was because the film would have to be low light or infra red to see anything. The idea was to make it seem that all power was off.

The hallway looked like someone had walked down it tossing paper around in a regular pattern, fakey. Why would paper be strewn about like that? Maybe they wanted the zombies to slip and fall on them. And where did the paper come from? Presumably from charts, that being the only paper not bound on a skilled care floor and all of it located at the nursing station. Anyways, being nit picky again, people do weird things when confronted by zombies.

I was thinking about why he survived too. The zombies are attracted by sound so being comatose would have saved him. Presumably the action in the hospital was all over by the time his IV ran out.

The flowers at bedside give a clue as to how long he was out. I've seen lots of flowers die. They looked like they had been without water for a few days, adding to that two or three days for the water in the vase to evaporate. The petals start falling off flowers when older than that. So I would estimate a little less than a week. Which gets back to the lack of power, backup generators should have lasted at least a week, but who knows, maybe the zombies got down there too. Or maybe maintainence wasn't on the job again.

Very realistic head shots except for the 1/2 corpse in the manicured park. CGI anybody?

Anyways, very enjoyable can't wait for the next episode.

Posted by: Larry the Nurse at November 01, 2010 10:36 AM (cocft)

148 not a big fan of zombie movies, but the acting in this was superb, it made me a fan just becuase I could suspend disbelief.

nicely done. I even felt bad for the horse.

Posted by: rumcrook at November 01, 2010 10:38 AM (60WiD)

149 No, it was the rage virus specifically. It'd been put in monkeys, and PETA-type activists, being who they are, unleashed hell on earth.

I'd have to disagree with you on which is scarier. Just one drop of blood was enough to infect someone almost immediately into a mindless roid rager intent on tearing you limb from limb. Bring one inside a hospital, even strapped, and you're just asking for a full blown epidemic destroying the hospital in minutes.

Zombie on the other hand... it'll just lay there. You mostly feel sorry for them, which was the point with the half destroyed woman anyway.

That said, no one on the show is a scientist. The black man tried to assure Rick that they are really dead, but how is he supposed to know? We know the "walkers" (they don't call them zombies) breathe and bleed. Yes, that lady in the park was still alive, but even humans have been known to live for a time while half their body was removed, so it's no less impossible than walking around while largely brain dead.

I'm not saying your supernatural example is wrong, but I like even the supernatural to have an underlying scientific explanation. I've read people who've tried to explain how Jesus was able to walk on water, and I prefer that kind of thinking. There's so much we don't understand, but that doesn't mean we're incapable of understanding it.

Posted by: Esthier at November 01, 2010 10:44 AM (ye6fm)

150 "I suppose that an older zombie that is dried up should have less splatter than a freshly made zombie."

Right, but that didn't seem to be the case here. Could just be an error, but it could be intentional. And maybe, there is a problem with blood circulation, and that's the cause of their need for feeding on people.

Posted by: Esthier at November 01, 2010 10:47 AM (ye6fm)

151

I'd have to disagree with you on which is scarier. Just one drop of blood was enough to infect someone almost immediately into a mindless roid rager intent on tearing you limb from limb. Bring one inside a hospital, even strapped, and you're just asking for a full blown epidemic destroying the hospital in minutes.

Zombie on the other hand... it'll just lay there. You mostly feel sorry for them

Cool.  We just have different aesthetics as to what is scaryiest.

And let's face it.  Neither of our two theories (supernatural vs virus) really would hold much weight in the scientific community.  Mine for obvious reasons.  (Heh.  By it's very definition, the supernatural rejects the scientific)  But even the rage virus (you were right, it was a virus) falls flat scientifically.  How does a virus work?  Once in the body (and we are talking about a blood borne virus) the virus circulates in the blood until it can penetrate a cell wall.  Once inside the cell, the virus sheds its cell and hijacks the nucleus, using the cell's DNA or RNA synthesizing mechanisms to create copies of the virus instead of the cells own blueprints.  Eventually, the cell bursts and dies, and the copies of the virus repeat this pattern.

Now, we both know that there is no way this cycle can be repeated tens or hundreds of times in the few seconds between the intial exposure to the virus, to the full blown rage symptoms.  Which is what the movie tried to tell us is what happens.  Going back to my car anology, that's like saying a new fuel additive can increase a cars RPM's from 3000 RPM's to 3,000,000 RPM's.  Not going to happen.  Not physically possible.

Anyway, if I had to try to explain how I, the internet time wasting king moron would explain a zombie apocalypse using your desired criteria, (I like even the supernatural to have an underlying scientific explanation) I'd try something like this:

God turns his back on His creation, and sends a plague to punish / destroy man. (Supernatural)  All the recent dead rise and walk.  (Supernatural).  Only their reptilian brain stem, with it's appetite function, and gross motor skills continues to function.  (somewhat "sciency").  God also causes a virus to form in the mouths of all the zombies (supernatural, and scientific).  Should a zombie kill a person, that person soon rises up from the dead, missing whatever body parts the zombie ate.  (supernatural resurrection, scientific explanation for why zombie ate parts of victim).  Should the person be bitten, but escape death, the virus from the zombies mouth reproduces like a normal viral pathogen until the person dies. (natural)  Following this death, this person arises as an undead zombie (supernatural.)

The above cycle repeats until the human race is exterminated for its sins, or achieves some sort of uneasy equlibrium, but is reminded at every funeral that God has turned His back on them, or somehow the human race redeems themselves and the dead stay dead naturally.

That's about as close as I can get to fusing the supernatural and scientific.  Which is pretty much how I see it in my ideal zombie world/movie.

Anyway, I'm not trying to bag on your viral/natural explanation.  It's cool.  And like I said earlier, I don't believe in zombies anyway.  I just like them as a fictional, supernatural sign of an apocalypse.

Posted by: ed at November 01, 2010 11:34 AM (Zsqn4)

152 I'm thinking those zombies were SEIU members and Obama followers...

Posted by: biff at November 01, 2010 12:08 PM (PYHRj)

153 I believe in them in the sense that I understand the mythology came from real occurrences involving those who were believed dead. Other than that, I don't know. There's a passage in the Bible about the dead rising and joining their souls in heaven or something. I imagine that won't look to pretty.

But supernatural with science, to me, is more like the idea that perception is key to experiencing matter, i.e., that we experience water as being no solid because we perceive it that way but that someone who knows exactly how perception works can manipulate it so that water is experienced as a solid and only remains this way so long as the perception does. In that way, Jesus wasn't showing that he was superhuman (technically, he was fully man) but rather that he, as the Creator, understands this world better than we do.

Or to put it another way, there was a time when we believed that all natural disasters were God's way of spanking us. We now understand why it rains and floods, etc., but that doesn't necessarily mean God wasn't involved with the rain being sent when and where it was.

Just a personal preference for me. The whole, "God did it," is simply an uninteresting explanation for me, because even if he did, it doesn't mean we won't someday be able to explain how.

Cracked actually does a decent job of explaining what it would take to give us a zombie apocalypse (5 Scientific Reasons a Zombie Apocalypse Could Actually Happen).

Some of those don't involve anyone dying, but we'd likely call all of them zombies if we ever saw one. And God could still be behind any of these.

Posted by: Esthier at November 01, 2010 12:27 PM (ye6fm)

154

Why do they hate us?  That's what I want to know.  Why do the zombies hate us?  Was it something we did?

Deputy Rick lived in an awfully nice house for a deputy, who must be one well-paid deputy living in the upper middle class.  He also must be the only deputy who doesn't have a house full of guns.

I can see why the black guy didn't shoot his zombified wife because zombie nookie is out of this world.  Trust me on this.

I can also say as a professional that if you encounter a zombie apocalyse, never, never enter a major city where the exit roads are clogged and the entrance roads are clear.  That's a red flag that trouble lies ahead.

There's never any chain saw work in zombie movies.  Sure, they're noisy, but if you have a chain saw you want to draw a zombie crowd.  And where's Anton Shigurh with his captive bolt pistol in this drama?  That's the perfect weapon for punching zombie's brains out discreetly.  They should make a sequel called "No Country For Old Zombies."

The zombies great disadvantage is their predictability.  If they're attracted to noise, put a siren at the bottom of a gravel pit and let it fill up with zombies.  Problem solved.

I think zombies play to an ancient fear of early feral humans, who would dream of their departed friends and family and believe those dreams to be real, not knowing the difference between reality and dreams.  They didn't want their dead friends raising from the grave to make demands on them so they buried them deep down with all their prized possession, often under big rocks.  Zombies are literally the stuff of our ancestor's nightmares.

Posted by: Tantor at November 01, 2010 12:55 PM (blNMI)

155

Wait.  YOu mean that that wasnt a democrat voter documentary I was watching?

I could have sworn I saw Nancy Pelosi 2 or 3 times without her Botox on that show.

 

 

Posted by: retired military at November 01, 2010 04:17 PM (kZW4U)

156 Ha! I was all worked up to ensure Day of the Triffids got its hat tip for 28DL and I see I've been well beaten to the punch. Well done!

Posted by: Clive at November 01, 2010 04:33 PM (l6nqJ)

157 Dammit, they were supposed to get with me about doing the soundtrack.  Bastards.  Now gimme some brains!

Posted by: jonathan coulton at November 01, 2010 06:19 PM (qpv9W)

Posted by: jonathan coulton at November 01, 2010 06:21 PM (qpv9W)

159 Comment #105 was about the nice landscaping on the street where the deputy lives ... a friend of mine actually lives there (Ormond St. in ATL) and he and his neighbors were paid by AMC not to mow their grass for several weeks this summer, before  they were shooting.

Must have been a really dry summer down there.  OTOH, can't have been but a few days since the outbreak, he would have died of dehydration in his hospital bed, as we've said.

Posted by: loge at November 02, 2010 07:23 AM (UtUG3)

Hide Comments | Add Comment

Comments are disabled. Post is locked.
177kb generated in CPU 0.39, elapsed 1.4267 seconds.
62 queries taking 1.2687 seconds, 395 records returned.
Powered by Minx 1.1.6c-pink.