Recent Dorkiness

Countdown to Halloween, Day 18: Zombie

So I have a confession to make: even though I’m a huge horror fan… I hate zombies. And not just recently, either. Their over-exposure is certainly good reason to hate them, but I’ve never liked the things. Or, actually… Let me clarify that. It’s not the zombies that I hate so much. It’s the zombie apocalypse that leaves me cold. I mean, I get it. The zombie apocalypse is really all about civilization’s fear of barbarism, of losing all our advancements and accomplishments to the mindless animals within, covered in a sickly-sweet candy coating of contagious disease phobia. So yeah, I get it. I just don’t care.

I also hate self-referential nerd fiction. You know what I’m talking about: genre fiction that uses the “rules” (read: cliches) of its own genre as some kind of meta-textual in-joke. It makes an easy play to the audience’s suspicion that they’re smarter than their entertainment, while using the wink-wink nudge-nudge as an excuse to engage in the same bad writing it’s supposedly lampooning (see: 90% of Joss Whedon’s everything).

And yet… I really enjoyed Zombieland. Maybe it’s because it’s cleverly-filmed, or because the character writing is so strong. Maybe it’s that Bill Murray sequence. Or maybe the zombie clown…

click to embiggen

But for whatever reason… I like that movie in spite of its being an astoundingly self-referential dork film about the zombie apocalypse.

Similarly, I’m not much of a Cranberries fan. But I do really dig their song “Zombie.” Which, much like zombie movies, isn’t actually about zombies. But at least there are no smarmy in-jokes.

BONUS ZOMBIE: Here’s the one zombie apocalypse moment in all the history of the genre that I can honestly say I love without reservation.

About Mark Brett (448 Articles)
Shaved Yeti. Alien. Writer of stuff. Read my fiction at Read my thoughts on comic books and other dork culture ephemera at

4 Comments on Countdown to Halloween, Day 18: Zombie

  1. I don’t…Man, you totally punched me in the gut by saying that you hate zombies AND Joss.



    • Heh! Sorry for the gut-punch. When I open up the hate-cannons, I get a little carried away…

      For the record, though, I don’t completely hate Whedon. He wrote every episode of Buffy that I ever liked, and I consider one of those (when Buffy’s mom dies) quite brilliant. There’s just a certain kind of self-consciousness to a lot of his work that turns me off. But he’s by far not the worst offender in the “self-referential dork fiction” category. In fact, he’s far better at it than most, and so calling him out in that context was probably unfair.

      But I’m also the one guy that hated Neil Gaiman’s Dr. Who episode, so you might want to take that into account when reading my opinions on anything…


  2. Nah. It was all just a trifle too cute for my taste. Silly I’m all for, but I can’t abide cute. I don’t like internet cat photos, either…


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