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Arts & Culture(Archives)


Paula Ogonoski is… The Entertainiac

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Desires of the Flesh

We are obsessed. There are zombies everywhere and one could argue that the zombie apocalypse has already started…

Flesh eating walkers have inundated every aspect of our lives. We see them on TV, in popular music, and video games. They are in a multitude of movies, and there are even stores dedicated to the walking dead apocalypse. Even non-profits have jumped on the bandwagon in YMM and utilized the theme as a fundraising tactic through a Zombie Run. Thank-you, Girls Inc!

Here is my top zombie related stuff from film to songs and everything in between. These are the things that make us happy that there are things that go bump in the night.

Top Zombie-related stuff and what-not:

1. Walking Dead: It almost goes without saying, but it would be reckless of me not to include the best show to ever hit the airwaves. The Walking Dead is the perfect recipe for success. It adds a cup of captivating storytelling, a tablespoon of complex and intriguing characters, and throws in a pinch of the grotesque to create the perfect fleshy soup. The only thing bad about the Walking Dead is having to wait painfully for the next episode.

2. Zombie Runs: I always argue that one should never run unless something is chasing you. A zombie run combines the creativity of a makeup and costume artistry, with the athleticism of a Lance Armstrong race- minus the performance enhancing drugs. You can even download a Zombie Run app which provides runners a storyline to get them moving.

3. 28 Days: Not to be mistaken with the Sandra Bullock rehab flick called 28 Days. I argue that 28 Days Later was the first of its genre which prioritized a compelling story first and put the shock-value and scare tactics of a horror movie second. The 2000 28 Days Later put a stronger emphasis on the characters and their journey, but certainly had the audience jumping in their seats.

4. Shaun of the Dead/ Zombieland: I couldn’t decide which was a funnier take on the zombie story, and since this is my list, I’ve combined them. These two movies made death and destruction knee-slapping, rollover with tears, hilarious. While both included the grotesque nature of a good zombie story, they provide the comical break for those who prefer to avoid the darker side of the undead.

5. Resident Evil: Whether referring to the video game, the comic books, or the movie franchise, it’s hard not to get engrossed by the zombie-kicking Alice, who “remembers everything.” Alice, brought to life with perfection by Milla Jovovich, never disappoints and leaves the audience walking away karate chopping the air in the middle of the night…just in case.

6. World War Z: I can only describe my thoughts on this as pleasantly surprised. With the cheesy-nature of Brad Pitt I was skeptical he could make a killer zombie-flick, but whether you call it World War (zee) or (zed), the bottom line is this movie is terrifying. This flick brings sincerity to the story; a terrifying look into what if?

7. Zombie: I couldn’t chat about zombies without giving a shout out to the 1994 hit song by the Cranberries. Zombie hit the airwaves and into our heads for the nearly two decades, and I challenge anyone to not sound like the not-so-smooth styling of Dolores O’Riordan when rocking out to it. Sure the song was actually an Irish protest about the conditions in Northern Ireland, but it counts.

8. Night of the Living Dead: This 1968 movie by George A. Romero became the little movie which could, going from a small independent to a commercial success. Fun Fact: According to Wikipedia, the only source which counts, the film “has been selected by the Library of Congress for preservation in the National Film Registry as a film deemed ‘culturally, historically or aesthetically significant’”. Plus it was super cool and way before its time; giving birth to the genre as we know it today.

9. Warm Bodies: This Romeo and Juliet(esque) flick is what I like to call the happy medium. It provides the love story that makes girls (and maybe some guys) swoon in their seats, with the humour of a John Hughes teen dramedy, all while maintaining the zombie-film requirements.

10. The CDC: Yup the Centre for Disease Control actually used the popularity of the zombies to teach people about emergency preparedness: “Preparedness 101: Zombie Pandemic.” Yup that happened, a genius marketing/education tool to say the least. Take that vampires and werewolves! I don’t see any government agency book written about you.

Photo: The Zombie Apocalypse Store in Las Vegas sells zombie related everything from survival food and supplies, tee shirts, zombie gear, posters and much, much more! You never know what you might need. Photo by Paula Ogonoski.


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