Thursday, October 13, 2011

Walking and Talking

Today I read about a proposed advertising tie-in that Bing proposed to the AMC zombie apocalypse series "The Walking Dead":
“We pitched them last year where maybe the characters could find a library with a generator and do a Bing search,” said Sean Carver, a marketing director at Bing, who acknowledged the scene was a stretch.
I'm surprised they didn't go through with the ad integration, because it couldn't have been any more ridiculous than what they decided to put on TV. The show doesn't make any sense!

Former blogger and friend of Tornado Slide Floyd Masterson agrees. We'll be chatting about the upcoming season 2. We plan to, anyway. It'll probably go a lot like the following email conversation we had at the end of season one, when the band of human survivors sought help from the CDC, only to find the CDC was occupied by one crazy, suicidal scientist. The CDC blew up just before the closing credits. If this isn't making any sense, then I'm correctly describing it.

Floyd, I assume with no cable, you’re not following along with The Walking Dead on AMC? The zombie apocalypse scenario is so absurd, we could chat about it for days.

I actually have cable again since I moved. HBO, too. And yes, I've been watching The Walking Dead. Certainly not a flawless show, and at times a bit annoying, but overall I enjoyed it, and found the finale oddly satisfying. I'll tune in for the next season, at least.

I've actually participated in some discussions of the show on the message board, where we all take turns pointing out plot holes and inconsistencies. My biggest problem so far -- why can some zombies climb things? And how did these people know that zombies can smell you? I'd request some empirical evidence before covering myself in zombie innards. America’s premier source for The Walking Dead plotholes.

This is definitely the worst show that I continue to watch. I guess it’s 6-episode season really worked in its favor, because any more of this nonsense and I’d probably quit, Lost-style.

It’s easy to say “Yeah, there are a few plotholes, but there are zombies and guns, so…” But these plotholes are really big! Like, if you and I decided to write a show I’d expect these sort of script problems, but this is made by professionals! And they even had graphic novels to read first, and discover potential problems, and correct them!

Building on the point you make about how zombies detect non-zombies – this was a fact that the survivors seemed to agree on, as if this became common knowledge in the days since the outbreak began. So it would seem that the zombie takeover was not instantaneous, a fact supported by all the military chesspieces we see moved around the greater Atlanta area. Then, in the finale episode, the survivors seem SHOCKED by Dr. Jenner’s admission that zombies are on every continent, and that they are causing real problems everywhere, and there may be little hope.

Remember the guy they handcuffed to the roof in the hot Atlanta sun? (On the day before someone at the campsite was complaining about the cold night, and wanted to build a bigger fire? UGH!) They chained the stairwell shut so he wouldn’t get eaten. So after he manages to escape the handcuffs, he’s still trapped on the roof, right? No. He walks 20 yards to some other roof access door thing. That the zombies never discovered? UGH!

I actually read the first graphic novel a few months ago, just to see if it lived up to the hype. I was underwhelmed by the writing and dialogue, which seemed like a zombie story written by somebody who wasn't at all familiar with the genre. It was so derivative and yet not at all a Tarantino-esque homage that I found myself a bit confused by its existence. It make elementary mistakes, like some of the stuff you've noticed. In fact, perhaps it's because I've actually found the show to be an improvement from the graphic novel that I'm not more disappointed with the plot holes and irrational behavior of some of the characters.

Have you read World War Z? That's some quality, well-thought-out zombie fiction.

I still think my biggest problem with the show so far was when the zombie was hitting the window with a rock, and then when the one was able to climb over the fence. And the show needs a goddam anti-hero, someone to cut through all the emotional BS and make some real, rational decisions on how to proceed. Wannabe rapist Shane isn't cutting it.

Don't compare the show to Lost yet. Let's let Walking Dead fans start treating it like the most clever thing ever and a freaking religion before we compare it to the cultish atrocity that was Lost.

Videogum just posted its finale recap, and I remembered a few more horrible points:

1.> Jenner decided to get drunk after his experiment was ruining, and kill himself the next day. Then the gang showed up, so we think, “Oh now he has new hope, he won’t kill himself.” Then we learn that he knew they were going to run out of power in 24 hours anyway, causing the building to explode. He was going to kill himself, like, a half-day before being incinerated?

2.> Blood tests! As Gabe puts it: “someone asked him what the point was since anyone who was infected would be running a fever anyway, and he said that he’d already “broken every rule in the book just letting you in here.” Haha. Relax. Pretty sure that book is OUT OF DATE and that no one will be printing an updated, more relevant edition.”

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