Zombie Apocalypse – the Crazies
A zombie apocalypse is a very interesting thing for multiple reasons. It’s something we’ve never experienced, though we see it in movies all the time. It’s something not individually destructive as a natural disaster, but a group of them is thought to be unstoppable. We as a culture have been obsessed with zombies for years, especially the use of them as a sign that the end of the world is coming. And it’s important to find out why and how they do this to us.
I mentioned how it’s something that hasn’t happened before, which is important for multiple reasons. If you look at other ways scientists and other predict the world will come to its end (or the actual definition of an apocalypse, an unveiling of something with great change), we’ve or know of things pretty close to them. If an apocalypse starts because of a war, we have some knowledge base on that. If global climate change is the cause, we are aware of the affect that ice ages and drouts in the past have had. We’ve had volcanic eruptions, hurricanes, uncontrollable diseases, earthquakes, and even astrological happenings that have had an effect on us. Yet zombies are something we have not seen, something we know nothing about, or even if it’s possible. It’s the unknown, the mystery and the danger that is so attractive in terms of entertainment.
In pop culture we see a zombie as a mindless, ruthless killing machine. Something with no emotional capability that cannot use human reasoning. It’s a major difference between how we see ghosts, vampire, werewolves, and witches, along with other creepy icons. We as a culture respect them as their own genre, and recognize them as a very specific type of monster. They have been portrayed in movies, television shows, cartoons, comics, costumes, music videos, and even parodies (where only certain topics are so intense that they require a humorous countertype).
To focus on a certain film, I plan on focusing on the movie The Crazies. This movie contains zombies similar to the ones in 28 days later, where technically the creature in question aren’t actual dead but instead infected with a disease. These infected people slowly lose consciousness, no longer can make logical decisions, live in a very aggressive primal state, and have super human strength and resistance as they aren’t in tune with limitations like pain and exhaustion. And of course this is the danger of the zombies that are to threaten our population if this kind of apocalypse would happen.
In The crazies these zombies are created because of a government project gone wrong. A poison was created by army scientists that was essentially wipe out populations by giving them these conscious numbing drugs (essentially zombie inducers). Yet this poison was lost into a water supply of a small town, where it soon spreads to a large amount of the population. The main character struggles to keep his family and close friends safe, while worrying about who to trust, and how to escape the town which is invaded by the government who is aware of the infection.
This movie deals with a number of things that are so frightening, yet so interesting. A pretty clear one is the obvious appearance of zombies. But what goes along with these creatures that also lure viewers in? In this case the government has almost total control, limiting who can leave the town and who is taken in for treatment. Unlike other zombie movies where it’s the people vs. the creatures, law enforcement as well as government policies are a major driver for conflict.
A zombie apocalypse is something that is not going to go away anytime soon. We as a culture recognize their potential when it comes to destruction, without having actually seen one. They have frightened us in the past and keep us entertained for what will soon be an entire century. As spoken of, The Crazies is just one example, yet variation in the genre of zombies is unlike any other. And until each idea is used up, people will continue waiting for a real life… zombie apocalypse.