Did you know that May is Zombie Awareness Month? No? Then you also might not know that the living dead pose a real and imminent threat to the survival of the human race.
Okay, so that might be a bit of hyperbole but the zombie has been a mainstay of fiction for generations for a reason. The monsters we fear can tell us a lot about our fears as a culture. Zombies show us the inherent fragility of civilization and play into our fears of unprecedented threats. Plus, zombie stories are just plain fun! So here are three zombie related tales in honor Zombie Awareness Month:
The Walking Dead is one of the highlights of the zombie renaissance. This television show based on series of graphic novels, tells the story of a small band of survivors in world overrun with “walkers.” With sufficient gore for even the most diehard horror fan, the series has plenty of emotion and drama. Fans are never sure if their favorite character is going to survive an episode lending this hit show a sense of true peril. The status quo never remains that way for long. If you’re already a fan of the show, be sure to check out the graphic novels!
What would happen if you crossed Romeo and Juliet and Night of the Living Dead? You’d probably have something akin to Warm Bodies. This book turned movie is emblematic of the relatively recent “zom rom com” genre and is a great choice if you are looking for a lighter take on the zombie apocalypse. This is a case where the movie differs from the book but in a good way. The movie is much lighter and at times funnier than the book and it keeps the emotional resonance of the budding relationship between the zombie R and the human J.
World War Z is another case where you can choose between the book or the movie and while the movie is certainly a quality action movie it loses some of the gritty, realism that is the hallmark of the novel. World War Z is the most genuinely terrifying entry on this list because author Max Brooks did painstaking research into everything from military tactics to political bureaucracy to corporate corruption. Told through a series of interviews decades after the Zombie War, Brooks portrays a post-war world that is riddled with the consequences of loss and devastation. If you enjoyed the movie I’d wholeheartedly recommend reading the book.