Episode 555: Living Life

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Zombie Cliche Lookout: Wishes of the Dying

I’d like to think that, when my time is running out, I would stop thinking about myself, and really start thinking about the people I leave behind. I’ve had a number of people I was close to die, and those that had the dubious gift to know that they were dying almost all did this. I’m not sure if that sense of perspective is just part of the human condition, but I consider it something beautiful in a time of pain and unknowing, and that counts for a lot in my book.

In zombie fiction, we see this all-too-real trope show up from time to time, although it’s generally reserved for one of two situations. The first is when a beloved character in a leadership role is infected, and has a very limited time left to ensure that his or her group has the best chance of survival possible. In the second situation, it’s a character that’s generally seen as being more or less useless, or perhaps even evil. With their life’s clock slowly ticking away toward midnight, they realize the errors of their ways and try to make amends as best they can.

About this Episode:

We’re going to be saying goodbye to Michael and Joy pretty soon here, and I wanted to give Joy a quick character moment before they’re gone. As you probably know, these are not my characters. This was a bit of an experiment to bring in two fan-created characters to the comic to see how they’d work. I liked them both, but feel like Joy got the short shrift a bit too often, hence her extra couple of scenes here.

Discussion Question: Let’s Keep the Politics Out of This

I’m not sure how many of you have been following the events in Ferguson, MO, but I think it’s been an incredibly interesting and tragic story, and I love bringing in real-life events to these questions. That said, I realize that this is an extremely politically charged issue, so let’s leave the politics to the side here.

What I’m curious about here is whether the protests, riots, and police responses have changed the way you think about zombie outbreaks at all. Riots and militarization are both extremely common elements in zombies stories, with the early parts of the outbreak often confused as riots. Seeing how things are going down in Ferguson, has this changed your perspectives at all?

18 thoughts on “Episode 555: Living Life”

  1. Typo alert, Zombie Cliche Lookout, second sentence “I’ve have” have–>had 😀

    About This Episode, fourth sentence: “short shrift a bit too often” I looked up “shrift” in the dictionary, and this word is to do with the forgiving of sins, not character defamation as I think Dave’s trying to say here.

    “Shrift” feels out of place in this sentence, although if Dave wants to justify his use of it, please feel free to point me to some examples where this word has been used in a similar sentence construction. Dave will have to figure out how he wants to reword that part, if he wants to change it. 😀

    • Fixed the first one. “Short shrift” is a phrase that means not really giving something the effort it deserves. I’m going to keep that one.

  2. Regarding the comic, and Michael and Joy being in it, is Dave going to turn them into never to be seen again characters, or is he going to have zombies get both of them on-screen? Whilst they are both fan created characters, I would like to see them again, down the track, and I was wondering how Dave intended to handle this. Hopefully without continuity errors, though! 😀

    • Hopefully without continuity errors.

      As far as your question goes, I’m not completely discounting the idea of them showing back up at some point. I guess we’ll see.

  3. I don’t really think the breakout of the ZA could be confused with a riot for more then a day or two. The simple fact is that at any protest there is always someone trying to make political hay. There is always someone ready to talk to the media or deliver their analysis. Once enough reporters get attacked while trying to get an interview I think the disturbance (while maybe not credited to zombies) will be treated as some kind of random violence and responded to as such.

    • Excellent points. Although I would argue that there might still might be analysts, just making wild-ass guesses about what’s going on. And there would probably be a few opportunists either trying to draw attention to their pet cause, or just out there causing mayhem and stealing stuff because they could get away with it.

  4. When it comes down to it, the civil unrest in Ferguson isn’t great on either sides. The Police aren’t justified to use excessive force when it’s not needed, and the protesters aren’t justified in breaking into a store and nabbing a pair of new trainers; the cops won’t foot the bill for that.

    That said, my opinions on Police handling of zombie outbreaks aren’t changed, and I will continue to prepare accordingly.

    • Good thoughts here, although I would like to draw a distinction between protestors and looters.

  5. You could use it as Discussion Question material, and decide if you want to take the route everyone thinks they should take. 😀

    • Not a bad idea.

  6. Im probably the only one here old enough to remember, but there used to be a thing called “wilding”


    I haven’t heard the term in a long time so Im not sure if its still happens or not.

    Seems to me that its most likely that the early onset of the ZA is most likely to be mistaken as this kind of activity as opposed to a riot or protest.

    I agree that there is bound to be some looting and people running around with “The End is at Hand” signs, but social media is so at large in our society that I cant see the public being fooled for long

    In the “Newsflesh” series of books (which I wasn’t crazy about I admit) the authorities attempt to cover up the initial outbreaks but the truth comes out though bloggers and social media. I imagine that much the same would happen

    • Huh, I didn’t know that term before, it certainly sounds fitting.

  7. BTW That was supposed to be a response to you 12:07 response to my comment on Dec1st

    • Ah, yeah. That makes a lot of sense.

  8. You ought to have Ted’s family with Clark and Barbara cross with Murphy Inez Brent Stuart Russell and Cheryl. Inez could break off to the other group as she believes her and Brent have a lesser status. I would to see the two groups interact.

    • That’s a pretty cool idea.

  9. Whoops meant to put love in between would and to.

    • My mind automatically put it there for you; I didn’t even notice the missing word.