Zombie-squashing on The Walking Dead like pulling weeds: Schneller
The violence that attracts so many viewers to the popular AMC show gives others a reason to tune out.
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The Show: The Walking Dead, Season 8, Episode 1 (AMC)
The Moment: All-out war
“I want some bang-bang, I want some scream-scream, I want blood,” a female voice on a walkie-talkie says.
“Well, maybe you’ll get lucky,” says the guy holding the walkie.
Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) and his Saviors are better equipped, but Rick (Andrew Lincoln), Maggie (Lauren Cohan) and King Ezekiel (Khary Payton) have amassed their scrappy forces against him. They feel their right will trump his might. Meanwhile, Daryl (Norman Reedus) and Carol (Melissa McBride) are herding zombies, with their trademark cicada-growl-mutter, into the breach.
“This is gonna be fun,” someone says to Carol.
“No, it isn’t,” Carol says.
I’m with you, Carol. I’ve tried to watch this series, whose Season 8 opener happens to be its 100th episode. I’ve read reams of testimonials: It represents a cathartic emotional escape from real-world violence. Viewers like to imagine that they, too, would become leaders in extraordinary circumstances. The characters and relationships are strong. Etc.
I get it that the circumstance of a show — “We’re Russian spies!” — is merely a metaphor for the meat of the matter – “We can never know our spouses!” But I can’t get into the circumstance here. The scream-scream doesn’t do it for me, no matter how realistic the severed zombie heads look as they continue to writhe on the ground.
What inspires many viewers just enervates me. I feel the same way pulling weeds — no matter how pesky they are, after 20 minutes of solid killing, I’ve had enough.
“All-out war” is the theme of this season. I guess I’m all the way out.
In Focus: Richard Crouse