Our society is obsessed with zombies. There are multiple zombie based tv shows, films, video games, board games, there are even zombie themed restaurants (Because apparently eating a regular hamburger at a regular hamburger shop wasn’t good enough for you). I’m not saying of there are a couple of examples I am saying there is a hoard of examples, a hoard that is slowly surrounded us in a barn while we were all too busy interneting and swiping right. There were over 50 zombie movie last year! There were over 20 zombie board games that came out last year. Most people don’t even know that 20 board games come out in a year, much less with the same theme. Hell, we like zombies so much we add it to intellectual properties that normally don’t have zombies. I’m looking at you Pride and Prejudice.
Zombies are popular, right? So why do people keep telling me how much they hate them? People keep complaining about how there are too many things with zombies, which I agree with, but obviously people must me loving these brain eater or there wouldn’t be so many products on the market. But people insist they hate them. Or at the very least, people will tell me, “Oh I don’t normally like zombies, but this one is different,” or, “This is good because it’s about the people and not the zombies.”
And I think that statement might annoy me more than anything else. “It’s all about the people.” I thought that was the whole reason we started using zombies. Zombies don’t have care or emotion unlike vampires or witches, zombies exist as a mindless threat so you can focus more on the survivors. Just look at a film like Night of the Living Dead, wether it was intentional or not, Ben being a black man was a very important part of the film, even more important, in my opinion, when he is shot in the end of the film. 28 Days Later has the King Kong ending where we are the monsters (To be fair the zombie are also monsters too).
So I guess my geek advice is: Don’t worry if you like something with zombies. You don’t have to qualify it with, “I normally don’t like zombie thing but…” With any medium and genre there is a good chance that some of it will be good and some will be bad, some pointless (I’m looking at you Organ Trail) The thing you should avoid is being so open about your hate for zombies. This year the card game I Hate Zombies is coming out. Why? If you hate zombies why did you make a zombie game? I know it’s because you like zombies but still want to appear to be like the cool kids that hate zombies, or you think your consumers are mindless creature that only want one thing… brains, I mean zombie things.
For those of you who have met me, you probably know that I like doing some unusual things solely for the experience. This time it came in the form of reading Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. So why did I choose this book, one traditionally beloved by women? Well maybe that was the point. So many of the women that I interact with and find interesting and intelligent, adore this novel. Maybe if I read it, I too would understand why it is so cherished. And I suppose I’d be lying if I didn’t secretly hope that I would magically stumble upon the secret to becoming a modern day Mr. Darcy.
Let me start by saying that I liked the book. The story is much more than a romance wrapped up in cliches that I have hated time and time again. There are some great characters throughout whose humor kept me interested throughout the tale, especially during some of the lengthier plot points. Also, I found that the historical bits about society entertaining, it was interesting to see how much society had changed in dealing with relationships (and also how much it hasn’t) and also Jane Austen’s satirical views on those customs. I believe the reason women who read this book love it is because they identify with Elizabeth and all want to find their own Mr. Darcy. The novel doesn’t really describe Lizzie making it easier for the reader to be able to imagine themselves as her. I, however, couldn’t identify with Lizzie in the way most women do, in fact there wasn’t really any character I could identify with (I suppose there is Mr. Bennet, except I think I’d considering shooting myself if I ended up with someone like Mrs. Bennet). While I liked the book I don’t think I could ever get obsessed about it like some fans. After all I don’t have any plans to watch the movie, read any other Jane Austen novels, or consume any of these other 176 books about Pride and Prejudice (Abigail Reynolds is an author who has published eleven books, all of them based on the classic book).
I should mention, the most enjoyable part of Pride and Prejudice was the actual reading of Pride and Prejudice. I’m talking about the discussions I’ve had with women about the story and which version of the film I should watch, the awkward part of those conversation when they tell me how hot Colin Firth is, and me having to explain to my male co-workers why I’m reading Pride and Prejudice and describing to them the intricate relationships while trying to appear that I don’t care about some “chick book.” I look forward to future conversations about it, and perhaps I will learn more about why women love Mr. Darcy so much and how to be more like him. While the novel didn’t teach me how to become Mr. Darcy maybe it taught me how to find my Elizabeth (or Jane… she seemed pretty cool too).