It’s Time To Admit The Walking Dead Sucks
The room was dark. We sat basked in the television’s warm glowing warming glow. Suddenly I noticed a bright light in my periphery. Its origin was one of my roommates. He was playing Candy Crush. It was at that moment I came to the realization that neither of us gave a shit about The Walking Dead anymore. I looked to my right and to my left, at people rolling their eyes or sighing. None of us cared. At all. After ANOTHER 60 minutes of nothing more than scenes where two people talk at each other about some nonsensical bullshit, I think it’s time we ALL admit that The Walking Dead sucks.
Which is why I was so excited to see an article on WIRED this morning titled, “I Want To Give Up Even More Than Rick Does.” Finally, I thought, fans of the show might be in agreement with me. Because it’s fucking terrible. It hasn’t been good since, maybe, the fourth episode of the first season. And yet I watch every Sunday with my roommates because it’s one of our things (like Poker Night, or Survivor, which we only watch as a household because we draw names from a hat before each season starts and the winner gets $100). The first two paragraphs of the WIRED article raised my hopes. It opens with a sentiment about fans who continue to support their favorite things (in this instance a comic book) even as they talk shit about it. Sounds kinda like The Walking Dead. I continue to watch even though I talk shit about it, sometimes throughout an episode. It’s hard not to when…
…we’re supposed to constantly suspend disbelief, like when Cutty from The Wire miraculously survives THIS dire situation without so much as a zombie scratch on him. Or when a flu outbreak and zombie intrusion occurs in the prison but NO ONE suggests sleeping with closed cell doors. Or when it is decided that those sickened by the flu need to be quarantined, but even then no cell doors are closed.
And then the reviewer for WIRED changes courses, writing, “[A]fter four years of watching the survivors shamble around in a near-constant state of trauma, it’s starting to feel like an exercise in endurance for me too. About how long I can continue to absorb this level of human misery. And about why I’m doing it: Because it’s cathartic? Because I want to see if the characters I care about survive? Or because I have to?”
Uh…I don’t know what show YOU’RE watching, but the one I see every Sunday isn’t anything like what you’re describing. It’s not human misery, it’s human stupidity. We’re three episodes into this season and literally nothing captivating has occurred. It’s all been conversations about Rick not carrying his gun, or why kids have to learn to use weapons, or how there’s a veterinary college called West Peach Tree Tech (HA!) that might have antibiotics to stop the flu outbreak. It’s as if the writers are literally picking names out of a hat to choose which two characters are going to have a one-on-one talk IN EVERY SCENE.
Last night’s episode breakdown was like this:
Glenn / Maggie
Herschel / Doctor Gupta
Herschel / Rick
Cutty / D’Angelo Barksdale
Herschel / Glenn
Herschel / Glenn / Carol / Darryl
Carol / Rick
Cutty / Rick
Rick / Carl
Darryl / Michonne
Herschel / Carl (then again out in the woods)
Carol / Little Girl
Sophia / Maggie (x2 with the baby)
Carol / Cutty
Herschel / Maggie
Rick / Carol (juxtaposed to the least-suspenseful potential zombie attack EVER)
Darryl / Michonne / Cutty / D’Angelo Barkdale (and the aforementioned BS zombie attack)
Herschel / Glenn
Rick / Carol
That was the entire episode, scene by scene. Two people talking. No action. No excitement. It’s like this EVERY WEEK. Nothing happens. I don’t even remember the flu outbreak in the comics. Am I mis-remembering? Or is this terrible excuse for upping the stakes yet another shitty non-canon turn? This show is such a turd. If it was any worse it’d be Homeland.
Is anybody still into this? I know they’ve lost 4 million viewers from week 1 to week 3, and can only imagine it’s going to get worse the further they stray from the source material. My best guess is that maybe your viewing parties are like mine, and while six or seven people might be in the room at the same time, at least three of those people are playing Candy Crush. They’ve completely extricated themselves from the emotional connection that can form between fans of a TV show and the program itself. In the case of The Walking Dead, that bond was never solidified with me, so I guess I’m just wondering why people still care about it.
Bottom line (TL;DR) is… I love the idea of depicting how brutal and hard life is for a group of people POST zombie apocalypse, but the show does a TERRIBLE job in that department. The comic does an amazing job of laying out the harsh realities and direness of the situation. The TV show has none of that nuance. Instead it feels like watching a dozen stale characters stumble around aimlessly while talking/acting like complete fools, and each episode has one or two contrived — dare i say forced — zombie encounters with no sense of real danger.
Fabio Frizzi – Zombi 2 (Track 8) [MP3]
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