The Walking Dead: Survivial Of The Grittiest

Summary: Based on the comic book series written by Robert Kirkman, this gritty horror drama depicts life in the weeks and months following a zombie apocalypse. Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) is a former Deputy Sheriff who is put into a coma for several months after he was shot while on duty. When he wakes up, he sees that the world is much changed  and has been subject to a zombie epidemic of an apocalyptic nature. When he returns home, he discovers his wife and son are missing and makes his way for Atlanta in pursuit for his family. Scarcely escaping death at the hands of ‘walkers’ on arrival in Atlanta, he is helped by another survivor, Glenn (Steven Yeun), who takes Rick to a camp on the suburbs of the town. At the camp are his wife Lori (Sarah Wayne Callies) and his son, Carl (Chandler Riggs). Also at the camp is his police partner and best friend Shane (Jon Berthnal) and a small group of survivors who struggle to fend off the zombie mobs but also competing with other surviving groups who are prepared to do what needs to be done to survive. It’s ruthless pragmatism at its finest. Hunt or be hunted.

Strength in numbers is a myth as it is shown in the first season when the group are blitz attacked by a mob of walkers in the dark. The assault cuts the group’s number in half in minutes. It’s about each member doing what needs to be done. The walkers cleaved the weakest from the heard. The apocalypse isn’t a place for the weak. The strongest ones tend to survive. it’s not about physical strength. It’s all about the mind. strength does help but it’s not the be all and end all. You must use your wits and be able to fight at any given moment. You can’t remain too comfortable and let your guard down. When the group comes into contact with other humans, thing get awry. It’s a bit like one of the old westerns at times. Each group is suspicious of the opposition. Then you see the tumbleweed blowing.

This series has shown me that no matter your personality or character, humanity will do whatever it takes to survive as Rick aptly showed us when he killed a man by biting into his throat. This is the guy who is a former-Deputy Sheriff. A cop with a code. He soon disregarded that code. Human instinct is to do what ever takes to survive. Considering he was physically compromised, he did the unexpected. The real enemies aren’t the walkers in this series. The enemies are other humans who seek control of others. The show is filled with gore, amazing storytelling and awesome character development but amidst these themes there are textbook themes such as: relationships, family and great tragedy as well. With a show that is filled with zombies, there is going to be loss. Valar Morghulis. This show is only second to Game Of Thrones when it comes to killing characters. Main ones at that, and in the most brutal way possible. It has made Game Of Thrones look tame, time and time again. In every show there is that character that is just a dick. In Game Of Thrones, it was Joffery. In The Walking Dead there are plenty. Shane, Father Gabriel (Seth Gillam), The Governor (David Morrissey) and Merle Dixon (Michael Rooker). Those are character that you want to be rid of. Just shoot him already!

Gimme Your Blood!

A lot of the going-ons in the Walking Dead could be deemed as vile but I see it as doing what needs to be done. I’m not sure about you but I don’t want to die. The ultimate goal is survival. Like Game Of Thrones, The Walking Dead puts our favorite characters in compromising positions that make us feel as if they could die at any moment. The show pushes the human psyche to the very limits to the point that cannibalism isn’t off the menu. Rick and company want to live. Ugly? Nice? It doesn’t matter. They have to be ruthless and if that means killing other humans, so be it. The law is what they make it. Rick’s group aren’t cannibals but when they reached Terminus they got into some serious shit. They managed to escape, but afterwards Bob got kidnapped (again) by their captors from Terminus who then cut off his leg and ate it in front of him.

As you may have noticed in every season up to now, this pushes the boundaries of our very humanity. The people with power within the group are playing judge, jury and executioner. If someone institutes a major fuck up, they get evicted from the group which has a high likelihood of death or they get executed on the spot. Something we like to call Ricktatorship. It’s not only Rick but he stands out the most. Somehow much of the fanbase still like Rick. I must admit that many of his kills on people were justified.

Our ability to relate to these characters is subject to our own morality. They may be some things in the series that some viewers would find in very poor taste where others wouldn’t care so much. As we saw at the end of the last season Rick went crazy to the point that it even freaked me out.  He got pissed off that the people in Alexandria had no experience in the real world. They were cooped up in a cage, living as if nothing had happened but his group had fought tooth and claw to get to this point. It was like trying to drain water from a stone. They were living in denial that the walkers couldn’t breach the wall. At least the walkers are on the wrong side of the wall…for now.

“This place is going to make us weak”

Carol on Alexandria

Other main characters include Daryl (Norman Reedus), Maggie (Lauren Cohan), Michonne (Danai Gurira) and Carol (Melissa McBride). Daryl is the Batman of the show. He’s just badass without doing anything. People say Batman will win any fight because he’s Batman without seeing reason first. Batman could defeat Darkseid singlehandedly. Daryl will win any fight with anyone because he’s Daryl. Both of these reasons defy all logic. Who cares right? Maggie is intelligent and brave but looks out for the welfare of the group. Michonne is a fighter through and through and wields a katana. Carol plays this innocent old lady type character when really she is as cutthroat as Rick and Michonne. In conclusion, this series is not really about zombies. Well it is, but the more important component is what people will do when they are pushed to the very limits; not only emotionally, but physically and mentally as well.

Oh and the black guys always die. Typical.


One comment