Episode 229: Mints on the Pillow

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Zombie Cliché Lookout: Enter the Gruff Badass

One of the fun parts about zombie movies is thinking about what a mild-mannered person like yourself would do in the midst of a large scale zombie outbreak. You watch the movie and say to yourself, “These people are idiots! If that was me, I’d be totally fine.” And by and large you’re right. The common folk in zombie movies tend to be clinically stupid. They make ridiculous decisions (flashing back to my favorite example: the guy in the Dawn of the Dead remake putting down his steel crowbar for a tiny croquet mallet) without considering the short and long term consequences. But then there’s the other kind of zombie apocalypse survivor: the consummate badass.

Badasses operate on a whole different set of rules in zombie movies. They’re able to make rational decisions, handle several zombies, and are proficient at the selection and use of a variety of weapons. When the badass dies, it’s generally due to a complete overrun of the zombie-defense compound, or because of some sort of noble sacrifice. The badass is often an active or retired member of the military or police.

About this Episode:

I don’t know why, but I felt really strongly that this character needed to wear a green beret. I’m not a big fan of the beret myself, but I think it lends a sort of grizzled, retired army hardass to a character.

Discussion Question: Favorite Movie Badass

Let’s expand this one beyond zombie movies for the sake of a larger sample size. Who is your favorite movie badass, and why? Bonus points if they’re from a horror flick, double bonus points if it’s a zombie flick.

Me? I’ve got to go with Dirty Harry. I’d love to see how ol’ Harry Callahan would handle a zombie outbreak in San Fransisco, especially now that he’s gotten older and even more gristled.

Other News:

I’m going to be taking a little break from the comic when my daughter is born in mid-to-late July. During that time, Zombie Mutts is going to be doing some guest comics and other fun stuff. But he needs good topics for discussion questions. So if you have any ideas, drop him a line at [email protected].

71 thoughts on “Episode 229: Mints on the Pillow”

  1. Accomodations? I like Sam’s response! 😀 I just hope he realizes he’s going to have to come up with something he’d actually be useful at! 😉

    • Don’t forget to send me questions to post!

      • If I can think of any, sure will! 😉

      • Just thought of one now … Emailing! 😉

    • I have to wonder whether Sam’s skillset (remember, he works on computers all day) is going to transition well to the PAW (Hey Bo, I know a couple acronyms!). I hope he has some rugged hobbies.

      • And if you remember your discussion question that asked a very similar thing, you’ll recall that most people will probably find something they’re good at. 😉

    • I like Stewart better. i love his badass machetie

  2. (Sacrcastic Voice) Oh if zombiemutts here then this will be the worst comic ever. Of all time. (Non sarcastic Voice)Congrats Dave! Sylvester Stalone. Then I have Rambo, Tango (From Tango And Cash), and an overall badass!

    • Hah!

    • Stalone: America’s least articulate action hero.

      • “Yo!” Given that zee’s neither speak or appreciate witticisms, a hero who doesn’t monologue fits right in!

      • vin diesel is on line 2 and would like to have a word with you.

        • Hah! Vin Diesel isn’t terribly hard to understand either, but Stallone, especially lately, sounds like he just had a massive stroke.

        • Maybe Sylvester Stalone and Vin Diesel as a get away driver. Mutts did you get my email?

        • Guy

          I sure did! I haven’t had time to watch it yet but I promise you I will. Thank you!

  3. Easy answer: John McClane (1989 vintage), but then “Die Hard” is Christmas viewing for me.

    Offbeat answer: Trent (Vince Vaughn’s character in “Swingers”)

    Just plain wacky fun answer: Ferris Bueller. Just think of the 4th-wall shattering discussions and the role that Principal Rooney likely would play in it all…

    As always in times of family expansion: all the best as you approach this time, and ardent wishes that all goes well!

    • John McClane is class, you know, before he jumped police cars into helicopters.

  4. since I live in the UK when I saw that green beret I thought he was part of the royal marines!

    I like how Sam’s expression makes him look like he’s still in shock after everything that’s happened recently, he looks like he doesn’t believe it!

    • The US just phased out berets as the standard uniform. I believe they are now reserved only for special forces, just like they used to be.

      • I think “the blanket” is still optional wear; but when I see a green beanie, I think a teams shooter. I’ve been very fortunate to have trained with a few; and without exception the ones I’ve known have been affable, respectful, and EXTREMELY capable. Remember that a large portion of their mission is to train insurgencies. To that end, they have to be good teachers.

        The Rangers still wear the blanket, too; but their colors switched to tan, after the army chief of staff gave their black beret to the whole rest of the army. Airborne still wears the maroon beret (which I have noticed is a common thread through many allied nations: paratroopers = maroon beret).

        On topic: I tend to like the survivalist badasses more than their urban cop counterparts. Think Snake Plissken or The Man With No Name over the urban cop or polished operator badass (what is our obsession with police shows and medical shows? Can I have one good tv dama that’s not about cops, lawyers, or doctors? /rant off).

  5. Personally, he seems like some kind of Scottish lord to me, all he needs is a kilt.

    • If he’s a Scottish lord, then I’m Mickey Mouse.

      • Haha!

    • Haha, I’m sure he’s about to pull a bagpipe out of his pocket.

      • It only looks like bagpipes, if you squint a little. 😉

        • Hah!

  6. haha, fun question Dave. You know what? we should ask TOPPS to make a badass trading card game!
    My pick would also be a role by Clint Eastwood – Will Munny in Unforgiven. For some reason that movie had a big impact on me. He may not be the most impressive badass of all time but he’s damned mean and merciless… and Eastwood is a hell of an actor too.

    • Excellent choice, Yatkuu, and a damn fine film.

  7. Congratulations, kids are awesome.
    The question, hmmm. Ok. Nathan Fillion’s sheriff from Slither.

    • Thank you sir!

      Nice call on Slither, although I’d have to stick with the mayor. God I loved that character.

  8. I had a chat about the “badass question” with a colleague over lunch and he told me he would pick Javier Bardem in “No country for old man”. Without a doubt I’d say the guy is definitely not the kind you’d want to mess with but… would he qualify as badass or is he rather in the total psychopath column?

    • I’d have to put Anton Chigur in the psychopath column. Definitely an interesting choice though.

  9. I took one look at dad and my jaw hit the desk. Awesome Dave!!

    • Oh and let me guess… is his name Agnus McBadass? hahahahahahahaha

      he’s my new fav

      • “Agnus McBadass”… not too sure people would take that one very seriously. Reminds me of that hilarious scene in “the Life of Brian” where the centurions can’t stop laughing with the name “Biggus Dickus”.

        • You’re probably right. I snicker every time I hear Dick Butkus on football. lol

        • Biggus Dickus has a wife you know…

        • Dick Butkus… Mhouahaha… no idea who he is but he must have had a hard time at school!
          lol Dave…
          I don’t know if everyone here knows what we are talking about, so here it is:

        • I love that movie. I think I wore out my VHS copy when I was in Jr. High.

  10. Hmm… I guess I might have to go with Mr. Smith from “Shoot ‘Em Up”. Takes down over a hundred bad guys over the course of the movie… two of them with carrots.

    • lol, now I want to re-watch that movie. I just checked a couple of scenes on youtube – the warhouse scene with nirvana in the background is kinda awesome.

      • I too now was to rewatch that. Hell of a fun movie, and Clive Owen is awesome.

  11. I am back! My computer crashed so I could not see any of you comics, so i borrowed my dad’s iPad. So regarding the question then, Bruce Willis is my choice, I have seen him star in many different movies, an mostly as the biggest badass in RED, I sh*t you not that is the most badass movie ever.

    • Red was pretty cool, but I don’t know if it’s the most badass movie ever. Die Hard or Aliens would be my top choices.

  12. Congrats Dave! 😀

    anyhow, The dad looks like a cross reference of Bill from L4D and Hershel from The Walking dead o.O

    for the question: I have no experience with watching zombie movies (I tried looking for some -.-) so I think the Main Female character from Resident Evil will do… for now (I forgot the name -.-)

    • Thank you, sir.

      Hah, he does sort of look like Bill!

      The main character in the Resident Evil flicks is named Alice if I recall correctly.

  13. Congratulations to the three of you!! Bwa, ha, ha!! With a newborn, your definitions between an “Insane Cult Leader” and “Protective Nobody Messes With My Girl Father” will become rather blurred!

    Speaking of: Sarah Connor, especially from Terminator 2, would be my choice. Focused, driven, trained by God Knows Who, amazing weapons caches all over the place, firm conviction that her son is the Post Apocalypse Messiah, and all around crazy resourcefulness.

    • Thank you, Luis! I’m definitely going to be the “No one messes with my little girl” kind of dad. I need to get a bunch of guns to clean for when she starts bringing boys over to meet me.

      • Pit bull and a shotgun…

        “Hey you! Anything happens to my daughter, I got a .45 and a shovel, I doubt anybody would miss you.”

        • I’m more of a GSD man, myself.

        • I’m thinking Dutch Shepherd next, because they don’t lose hair like a German Shedder.

  14. I think one of the big things with the badass is figuring out if you’ve found a real one or not. All we know right now is that Sam’s found someone who’s supremely confident when they’re inside a fortress surrounded by their followers. I think we’ve all seen more than a few “badasses” who completely fall apart once they’re in an actual crisis situation…

    If I could say television, the ultimate badass would have to be John Casey from CHUCK. Movies, it’d have to be a tie between John McClane and Martin Riggs. 🙂

  15. Hmm…. Well, honestly I don’t watch movies enough to see a hard core guy. I especially don’t watch zombie/horror flicks so I can’t relate to this one.

    Oh and I’ll be checking out zombiemutt’s site from now on!

  16. Up, nevermind I didn’t realize there was no site. Sorry!

  17. I am stuck on who I should choose, There are so many badasses (I can’t think of many movies BA’s so am trying to choose from TV). The choice would be much simpler if it was from Movies TV and Video games instead of just movies, but there is the plight of the Gaming Geek.

  18. My favorite movie badass? Probably Tallahassee from Zombieland. He was sorta a New-Mexico/California Machete in the zombie apocalypse.

  19. Yeah, I can imagine the harsh father talk when Sam starts falling for Emma. If he hasn’t already 😉

  20. go to youtube then type in cannabal zombie. where is this world coming to

    • Some place better then where it is right now..
      Let us all hope for zombies..

    • It’s “Cannibal” dude XD

      They say its contagious o.O

  21. what does he mean about finding the accomodations of your liking????

    • We will find that in the next strip…

      This Family has too much secrets, yes?

    • He’s just being a smartass. Sam was locked up in an empty room with a bucket. The accommodations weren’t to anyone’s liking.

      • I’ve been in worst motels . . .

        • So, what, they didn’t even empty the bucket from the previous guest?

      • *and a sock.

        • The sock seemed to be rather… stiff.

  22. Nicely done, Dave. The first word that popped into my mind as soon as I saw the beret and the eyepatch was “badass.” Then I scrolled down, to find the word used repeatedly throughout the cliché blurb.

    I can’t wait to see what this guy ends up doing!

    Also, congratulations on having a daughter! I’m a little bummed out it will mean a hiatus on your part, though, although I can’t wait to see what ol’ Mutts will come up with for guest strips. (I could perhaps do you a guest strip or two, if you’d like, now that I’m getting back into the swing of things.)

    • Thank you!

      It’s very likely that I’m going to have another short hiatus around the time we move, so that might be an opportunity.

      • Alright, just let me know when my guest-stripping services are needed.
        (This comment sounded much less questionable in my head…)

  23. Good first impression. I hope these guys don’t turn out to be total fruitcakes, that would really suck for poor Sam.

    I’m pretty terrible at answering these “favourite” questions. I watched Die Hard recently, and I liked how John McClane outsmarted the bad guys rather than simply outfighting them all at once. That kind of badass is probably my favourite type.