In honor of the upcoming Halloween holiday, I bring you musings from my brain in the form of "Waxing Zombie." From Wikipedia: "A zombie is a reanimated corpse devoid of conciousness. In contemporary versions these are generally undead corpses, which were traditionally called "ghouls." ..."
Two of my favorite movies are "Sean of the Dead" and "28 Days Later." Both are essentially zombie movies that sort of tie into each other in a silly ass way. On Saturday night, one of the local channels showed "28 Days Later" and it spawned a conversation between Casey and myself about the current uprising in "fast" zombies in movies.
The traditional Hollywood zombie has been a slow moving zombie, one that you can easily out run. You used to have plenty of time to whack a zombie over the head and decapitate it, set it on fire, fire your shot gun at it and reload, etc. With the exception of the zombies in Sean of the Dead, which are the traditional slow moving zombies, the new crop of Hollywood zombies are quite fast! You barely have time to slam the door shut in their face, let alone escape! This leads me to a new theory on "zombies." To explore this theory, let's look at 28 Days Later because it's fresh in my mind.
Casey said his problem with 28 Days Later was the very beginning. I admit chimpanzees infected with "rage" is a bit on the ridiculous side. Casey simply didn't buy the chimp puking blood on the girl at the beginning causing her zombification. I had to explain to him that the monkey attacked her, bit her on the neck/torso area and then she was zombified and spread the "rage." After explaining that to Casey I realized that she didn't die. She was infected. Zombies, by definition, are a reanimated corpse. Frankenstein could be considered a zombie if you really wanted to be technical about it. (We're not going to for sake of time, but you get the point.) The people in 28 Days Later were never killed, they were INFECTED, therefore they were not really zombies.
This leads me to believe that the whole "zombie" thing where a "zombie" bites you, thus infecting you with their contaminated bodily fluids and causing you to turn into a "zombie" is actually a virus. Furthermore, true zombies would be slow. Again, zombies are reanimated corpses. One could assume that since they are corpses that there would be some rigor mortis. The rigor mortis would follow the traditional slow moving Hollywood Zombie. One would naturally assume that you can't move too fast if you can't bend your legs or arms because they're all stiff because you are dead and blood doesn't circulate through your body. Makes sense, doesn't it?
Another difference between zombies of old and nuZombies is the fact that the nuZombies seem to want to kill. Yes, zombies of old wanted to kill and the same craving for human flesh exists but the nuZombies run after their food, essentially hunting it down. Zombies of old just kinda went "uuuuuhhhhhhnnnn" and if you happened to get cornered by one? Happy feeding Mr. Zombie Dude!
We have given the flesh chewing creatures in 28 Days Later and other newer zombie flicks the title zombies because we haven't come up with a better term. But it also makes me wonder if this isn't a sort of evolution of zombies? Of course it is an evolution of a bad guy; Hollywood making zombies more interesting. My question: How did they get fast? Is this a survival of the fittest type thing? Although, if this zombie-ism is a virus rather than voodoo, a virus has a limited run of time. This was also discussed in 28 Days Later. At the end of the movie you saw "people" laying on the road acting quite hungry and essentially starving to death. And virus' can jump species, too. What's to say that a crow picking at a dead, infected body doesn't contract the virus and spread it to other animal life? 28 Days Later takes place in Britain. What would keep the bird from not flying across the English Channel into France or anywhere else for that matter?
So many questions arise from the zombie virus theory that one could spend hours debating the probabilities of it. I could definitely spend hours waxing zombie if I so chose, but the truth of the matter is I have a 1 month old munchkin who is not a zombie and very much wants a bottle. So yeah, I'll quit for now. Tomorrow I think I may tackle the evolution of vampires.