It seems there are as many prepping for the Zombie Apocalypse as there are for WW lll. What does this mean? No-one thinks its real but an awful lot of young people are pre-occupied with it. I even came across a zombie survival manual in someone’s loo recently. It was very detailed.
”your team of hunters will be out during the brightest, hottest, most excruciating part of the day. Make sure each hunter is well supplied with water and antisunstroke accessories.” Max Brooks. Zombie Survival Guide. Complete Protection.
Max put a lot of thought into that. My own seventeen year old waxes between sigma functions of differential equations and the best places to hide out in case of a zombie attack….along with millions of others, judging from the brisk sales of the bestselling survival guide…
and its contribution of a Wall St estimated 6 billion dollars to the economy..
So what is going on?
Max himself says,
”You can deal with societal breakdown, famine, disease, chaos in the streets, but as long as the catalyst for all of them is zombies, you can still sleep.” Max Brooks.
yeees, but that seems a bit thin.. self-analysis always gives you what you already think… It still keeps the zombies ‘out there’, not me and nothing to do with me.
Zombies are one of the main collective psychological fantasies of our culture, a significant contender to Porn Industry for the OCD Heavy-Weight Championship face-off.
The Living Dead are a collective symbol. They describe an inner condition of Western Consciousness, and because it has to do with us we have a fascination for it.
We have festivals to try and give some creative expression to it. Halloween is second only to Christmas in the Collective Imagination. Yet it has been so overladen with split off aspects of the modern psyche that it more resembles a Mexican Day of the Dead than it does the original Samhain New Year festival.
The Mexicans proptiate their departed with offerings of food, drink, music and fireworks, to stop them messing in Life’s affairs and ease them along into the next world. Its good psychological hygiene. It works because the Mexicans understand what they are doing. Its a far cry from sending your kids out in elf costumes to get wasted on sucrose.
We have lost the knack of honouring the ancestors, or facing the underbelly of their legacy to us, the planetary pillage they initiated, the theft of whole nations still ours, still exploited, today.
Collectively failing to know our own history makes the walking dead of History’s descendants. Our firm belief in our moral superiority, subjecting others for their own good, the rampant proliferation of narcissism in our culture and continued exploitation of what are now Slave Nations, gives rise to something inside us eternally hungering, devouring of Consciousness, sapping of Life.
We are naturally moral beings. People know when they are living off ill-gotten gains. It makes it difficult for them to enjoy what they’ve taken and makes them subconsciously want to fail, want to be brought down, finds them in need of enemies. Eventually the split off conscience finds some way to sink the shining hero, which is why evil always rots from within and why anything dictatorial is invariably the author of its own demise.
I too believed in my own supremacy once, in elite right to rule. I was priviledged, and suppressed people ‘for their own good’ but strange to say it filled the world with demons that only truly disappeared when I pulled my head out of my ass and reflected on the hidden fascism in policing the planet whilst feasting on its brains and intestines.
Curiously the symbol of zombie brain-feasting was never part of the original genre. It is as recent a contribution as the Simpsons 1992 classic Treehouse of Horror. Yet, like any divinely inspired midrash, it stuck because it seems right.
Return of the Living Dead’s writer and director, Dan O’Bannon, suggested that the undead felt the need to feed on brains because it somehow made them feel better by easing their pain.
Which, by way of allegory, is precisely what makes people mess with one another’s heads. The insecure narcissist who knows he is only skin deep has to have someone be the dumbass in the equation. Even the prime Minister of Montenegro will do. Anyone with juicy brains and soft guts.