Take a Drink: for each zombie-related famous face
Take a Drink: for each seminal zombie movie referenced
Take a Drink: for brutal kills
Take a Drink: for zombie “rules”
Take a Drink: every time George Romero seems bemused by what he’s wrought
Do a Shot: for zombie-related songs
Do a Shot: Red Letter Media, baby!
By: Henry J. Fromage (Three Beers) –
We live in a world in which the far and away biggest hit on television is a bloody genre (Zombie) show in its sixth season. It’s hard to properly communicate how bizarre a notion that would have been even ten years ago.
This would get at least six seasons and a(nother) movie today, ten if you could sell Reavers as Zombies.
Doc of the Dead examines the rise of the zombie phenomenon, from Haitian folklore to xenophobic horror to the ultra-low budget, paradigm-shifting Night of the Living Dead and onward and upwards to the present day, where a 1,000-person zombie walk through a major city barely warrants the bat of an eye.
If you’re not terribly familiar with the history of zombies in film, you’ll find this documentary very informative. Certainly just about everybody who is anybody zombie-related weighs in, making this as comprehensive a doc on the subject as you can hope for.
Unless you’re a Fulci fan… not sure what happened there.
The doc also makes an excellent case for zombies as a new cultural institution, with worldwide origins and worldwide influence. Peeks into some of the stranger off-shoots of the phenomenon, like cottage industries built around the inevitable (in their minds) zombie epidemic, or, *shudder*, zombie porn, are really interesting as well, and Red Letter Media’s odd interludes satirizing zombie tropes are hilarious (because of course they are).
However, if you’re already a big zombie fan, you’re not going to learn too terribly much. It’s a nice primer, but it doesn’t dig terribly deeply, and ignores the more unsettling implications of the guilt-free murder spree most zombie entertainment revels in.
Let’s be honest- this is GTA you can justify
The stranger corners of zombie fandom it does explore are pretty hit and miss. They show the “zombie preparedness industry”, but don’t inquire any further than that- this topic alone would be a fascinating subject for a documentary. The sexologist who says “Sex with a zombie is probably the ultimate rape” is more skin-crawling than any of the gory kill scenes. Lastly, the animated analogy likening monsterdom to high school, with all the werewolves as jocks, vampires as sexy popular kids, and zombies as nerds makes no sense whatsoever.
Doc of the Dead is a surface-level, but enjoyably wide-ranging documentary about a modern pop culture phenomenon.