Episode 156

About this Episode:
I don’t know why, but I was having a hell of a time getting both Gene and Barb to hold onto the couch without either toppling, dropping one side, or losing Gene’s gun over the side.

Zombie Cliché Lookout:
One of my favorite things in zombie stories is improvised barricades. Whether it’s random boards being nailed across doors and windows, to people piling heavy object in front of points of ingress, I’m a big fan. It’s the improvised nature of the barricades that works best. It always introduces this instant sense of desperation and feat that’s necessary in any good zombie story.

82 Comments

BrickVoid

Now this brings an interesting question: Are they bashing against the door with sheer force of numbers, or is this infection of theirs capable of intentionally making them solve obstacles in their path to food?

Dave has said that his zombies don’t use tools or have problem-solving abilities, but sometimes I’ve got to wonder, especially when that Fireman zombie happened across the group Murphy was with! 😀

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Lich Barrister

An evolutionary neurosurgeon/zoolgist is probably best suited to this, but isn’t it a decently high level of cranial ability necessary for tool use? If the brains of the zombies are decaying as quickly – or quite likely faster – than their bodies, then they’d certainly get worse over time, no? (Unless the source is magic, obviously.). Should it then be the case that zombie technology sparks and then fades ad nauseum? Will the barricade hold up until a certain newly-minted zombie turns the tide only to soon after fade into the crowd?

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Dave

A quick Googling shows that a certain level of intelligence is a necessity for tool use, although I couldn’t say to what degree. This was an interesting article, at any rate.

As far as brains and decay, I’m not sure how it all works. I imagine there’s probably some sort of mutation/change to the brain to destroy things like free will and memory, while amping up aggression and instinct. But, well, I’m no scientist, and I doubt you could make much of a scientific argument on the matter without sounds like a mad scientist. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, of course.

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zombiemutts

I think there is a small amount of muscle memory and instinct left in the undead that degrades over time. Smart enough to know that they need to move to a food source and negotiate obstacles just like an ant can.

As far as aggression…the zombie virius would, IMO, work much like brain damage which can cause serious anger issues and certainly does with zombies. If we were to give a zombie a CAT scan there frontal lobe would show no activity which regulates such things.

Check this article out…this is a story that is taught in every basic psychology course. Google a name “Phineas Gage.” What happened to that guy is the perfect example of how brain damage can completely alter someones personality.

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zombiemutts

Yeah and if you re-watch Walking Dead where they are inside the CDC and show they CAT scan of his wife reanimating and if you look close you’ll notice the frontal lobe is dark…I cheered when I re-watched it and looked for it.

Yes folks…I know how to party.

Dave

Ain’t no party like a ZombieMutts party ’cause a ZombieMutts party don’t know how stop obsessing about the anatomy and physiology of the human brain.

Dave

I think the bashing against the door is a pretty simple thing. The zeds hear potential food and try to navigate to it. A barrier or some sort stands in their way, so they just sort of bash and claw at it until either A. The barrier is destroyed and they can pass, or B. The potential food source is no longer detectable.

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BrickVoid

Wouldn’t it just be funny if the zombies could hear potential food on the other side of an impassable door? Like a walk-in safe you find in a bank, complete with airconditioning, etc.

“Well, at least they’ll never break this steel door down while we starve to death!” 😀

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Dave

You know, that would make for a really creepy short story. A small group of survivors trapped in a hermetically sealed vault with zombies outside. They’re out of food and water and are just sort of waiting to cash in their chips.

Dave

Hah, that does sound like a great Twilight Zone episode. The black and white ones, of course. I never did like any of the more recent versions.

Silver Fox

Go Barb!

And that’s a good view now of the chainsaw to see how it was built for the Advent it comes from.

And then Gene just standing there screaming… yes… make more noise. Alert the hungry zombies that there’s tasty long pork in the Hospital.

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Dave

Hah, that’s Ted doing the screaming. Ted is… not entirely useful in a survival situation, although he did take out the doctor zombie a few episodes back.

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Silver Fox

Ted then…

they should use him for the next scene calling for a luring away of a massive horde of zombies.

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Randomnessly

I think it’s funny that Ted is just standing there yelling things that they already know while Barb and Gene are actually doing stuff. He’s kinda being one of those stereotypical celebrities that always expects work to be done for him.

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BrickVoid

Ted’s personality is so egotistical it would turn into a zombie two minutes before Ted ever got bitten! 😀

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Yatkuu

The best part with barricades is that they are usually placed against a door when zombie usually enter through the windows… so the barricades very often turn from a life saver initiative into a deadly trap for the poor souls who desperately built them in the first place…
I can’t wait to see the zeds enter the room and see some action!

On another completely unrelated note – have you guys seen this: http://youtu.be/IgV1AVSz8jw ? It’s veery politically incorrect but damned well done too (omg it’s a real cat in the blender!).

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Dave

The barricade thing is an excellent point. That’s going in the ideas log.

That trailer is something else. Good god. I loved the French accent on Obama.

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zombiemutts

Yatkuu….your new MOC are nothing short of amazing. I just checked out your flickr feed and I am stunned.

Everyone…click on Yatkuu’s name and see a true master’s work.

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zombiemutts

Those Western MOC’s surpass PowerPigs work…

Yatkuu…could you please show me a picture of how you do your lighting? If you don’t want to show that believe me I understand.

Yatkuu

wow… guys, thanks for the praise, I did not see that one coming! Really glad you like my western MOCs, please note I did get a lot of help from my friend Pixel Fox on these ones!
Zombiemutts, I must beg to disagree with your reference to PowerPigs – the man is an artist, I just play with Lego in comparison!
Now, regarding your question on the lighting… well I have tried various things, for the small MOCs I have been using a homemade lightbox for a while but I grew so tired of the damned thing which was falling appart that I recently purchased a real one on Amazon (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Portable-Studio-including-Lights-Tripod/dp/B00140RTJU/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1317230466&sr=8-3), you can see a picture here with one of my MOCs: http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/Yatkuu/western/dsc01037.jpg
In what concern the larger dioramas… well, it’s a nightmare. So it’s a lot of tryouts but I try to always use the same principles – no direct light exposure and multiple light sources.

(Sorry for the links, I’m not sure how to code these)

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Dave

No worries about the links; this works fine.

Love the western MOCs. I’m actually working on a little western-themed project now, so this is right up my alley.

zombiemutts

I guess I am separating his MOCS versus his stuff for Art and/or publishing intent. I am splitting hairs with my own definitions you could say.

Nekrospike

Why is Gene’s gun on the couch? Is he going to try to get it whilst the z’s are breaking through and get bitten?

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Dave

He just tossed it up there so he could grab the couch with both hands. Purely a temporary move, much like the Barb dropping her shovel to help.

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Nikolai

Dave, you’ve been a this for almost two years now. Don’t you think it’s time we saw some camouflage, if you know what I mean?

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Nikolai

Yep, the Military! I think now would be a good time for them to take out Jeff, without knowing that he hasn’t turned yet…

Dave

I may be mistaken, but I believe I referenced the national guard early in the series, saying that they would be deployed to priority targets, like major cities. BotD takes place in a relatively small town, so it would be a low priority.

Furthermore, a lot of active military are currently deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan, and – if this is a problem around the world – I’m not sure how quickly they could be redeployed stateside. And if they were redeployed, how many would go AWOL in an attempt to get back to their families in this time of crisis?

I’m not saying the military won’t ever make an appearance, but I have not plans of using a lot of soldiers anytime soon.

WJS

Well, that would basically be the end of the story, wouldn’t it? A single platoon would clear out most of the town in hours (if not minutes, depending how big it is), never mind the army actually arriving in force. You’d probably be finding the odd zombie that was trapped and couldn’t go outside to see what all the noise was for a while, but they would be finished as a serious threat.

the dude person

I never noticed before, but that’s a great couch, Dave. Hopefully it will hold up to the teena- I mean, zombies.

I love how somehow, even the fish looks incredibly worried in that last panel. Nicely done! 😉

And Captain Obvious sure is being helpful…

Another thing I like about this episode is the part of the “barricade” cliché, in which the survivors seal themselves in safely, but don’t realize that one of their own is already turning…

Nice episode, Dave! The tension is really building.

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Dave

Thank you, sir. It’s not an original design, I’m borrowing pretty heavily from the furniture in the Fire Brigade set.

Excellent observation regarding the barricade!

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WJS

I would agree with all of that, with one exception: they definitely do know that Jeff is on the turn.

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Dave

Well technically I should be working on finishing up this boring ass report, but yeah, that comment editing thing is on my to do list as well.

zombiemutts

Sitting in a cubicle clicking around on an obscure blog that has a comic made from legos that feature an apocalypse theme. Not really sure how my life got here but…well…hi.

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Calicade

Read the book 1984.. That’ll cheer ya up. I just got 14 minutes till I’m out of here for 5 more hours of this boring institution.

the dude person

1984 is actually a favorite of mine. Although high school classes (I’m assuming you are in high school) can usually suck the fun out of just about anything.

1984 provides a somewhat dim and hopeless view of the future. But hey, don’t zombie apocalypse stories, as well? 😉

Calicade

Ooooh I loved it! Not only is it what I believe this world is coming to slowly, but it also provided me with rage at the main story plot which is just the right emotion you want from me.
As well with my political beliefs (Libertarian, Yes I’m a capitalist pig that believes in personal and economic freedom from the government) It annoyed me that Winston was so… I don’t know.. So pansy, but then I kind of assumed it was his age. I could talk about the book quite a bit!

zombiemutts

I am not the biggest fan of the classics but I am a huge fan of 1984…but my favorite of all time is Fahrenheit 451 and had a huge impact on me. Not to get into politics but Calicade started so I share the same beliefs at he does it seems with what was expressed. And I am fairly sure it was Fahrenheit 451 that turned me into a disgusting liberal. 🙂

the dude person

I agree, that does look kind of awesome! But only kind of. Especially since I have an iPhone 3G for the time being… Damn iPhones, a couple years from now they might as well be disposable, so that you can just get the new one every week….

But this game seems like an innovative idea; I wonder where we’ll end up with it in the future, if it catches on.

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Dave

Seriously, you’d never realize how frustrating it is to get two minifigs to move a damn couch. All that effort, and it still doesn’t look great.

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Calicade

I would of put their arms under it to the elbow, then I would have pressed their hands into the bottom of the couch. Then it would of looked really great.

WJS

I kinda have my doubts about them breaking down the doors. Aren’t the doors in hospitals generally fire doors, i.e. very sturdy and heavy?

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