*spoiler alert: If you’re not watching the current season, but are watching old ones trying to catch up, don’t read this post yet.*
The episode where Lori’s baby was delivered by emergency C-section during a zombie attack and her young son had to shoot her in the head after her death to prevent her from becoming a zombie was not something I would have chosen to watch with my fourteen-year-old son. But we’re big fans of the show, and so there we sat when it happened. John scooted closer to me and wrapped him arms around me, and I’m not sure if he was looking for comfort, providing comfort, or a little of both. Either way, we’ve had quite a few “What if. . .” discussions since then.
We both quickly agreed that we’d shoot (or otherwise destroy the brain of) the other after death to prevent each other from becoming zombies in the event of a Zombie Apocalypse. Michael refuses to join in these discussions, and has in fact stopped watching the series since that episode, but we John and I agreed we’d “take care” of him and other family members as well.
Then we discussed pets. Would dogs become zombies or would the zombie infection be species-specific? And if dogs don’t become zombies but their barking attracts zombies should they be taken along on our quest for a safe location? We decided we’d take the dogs, but make one of our first stops a pet store that sold those awful shock collars that train dogs to stop barking.
We spent an entire commercial break deciding on our preferred weapons. We both agreed that guns would be a poor choice because you’d surely run out of ammo before you ran out of zombies. John decided on a club/baseball bat sort of weapon. I decided I’d need something that required less brute strength – perhaps a machete or a hatchet. John, of course, questioned my ability to be accurate with either of these considering I once severed the end of my thumb using a mandolin slicer. He’s got a valid point. I’ll be the wimp attacking zombies with a paring knife and won’t make it through the first episode.
Both of us agreed that one’s position in the pre-zombie world should not necessarily dictate their position in the post-zombie culture. Choosing medical personnel for your team? Give me a guy in prison for vehicular manslaughter who was once a field medic in Iraq over a dermatologist any day.
Michonne’s zombies-on-a-leash idea? We both thought this was a winner, and that for safety’s sake ideally the jaws and arms of infected corpses should be removed before they woke as zombies. Have I totally freaked you out yet?
Would you trust a town like the town Andrea and Michonne found, with its green lawns and back-slapping Governor? John said he wouldn’t be fooled for a minute, but I have to admit I’s be easily sucked into a sense the normalcy and safety the town seems to provide on the surface. I’m a “joiner” and a “planner”. I’d be meal-planning for the masses and hunting down qualified teachers within forty-eight hours, blithely ignoring the zombie gladiator fights and the fact that no one knows the Governor’s name.
Is staying in the prison a good idea? At first, I thought the prison was perfect. Nice tall fences to keep the zombies out. But you just can’t make a prison feel like home. You can turn the exercise yard into a garden, maybe paint the cells, but there’s just way too much negative energy there. John’s still in favor of the prison idea, but I suspect he’ll change his mind before the season ends.
What should you pack in your “in case of Zombie Apocalypse” duffel bag? I think this will be an ongoing discussion. My priorities lean more towards books, thick socks, antibiotics, and toilet paper, while John’s lean more towards stuff you’d find in the hunting section of a sporting goods store. In fact, a saw a really cool electric wine opener the other day and my first thought was, “That’s great, but I’d still need my Pampered Chef one for the Zombie Apocalypse ” Maybe I should watch more Project Runway All-Stars and less Walking Dead.
Here was the toughest question of the night, and it came from John. What about people who can’t follow directions or keep quiet in order to avoid attracting zombies? Wow. For those of you old enough to remember, this took me back to the final episode of M*A*S*H, in which Hawkeye (Alan Alda) was on a bus with a woman who smothered her baby to keep its cries from alerting the enemies nearby. My best response was that it’s your moral obligation to try to help those weaker than yourself, but if you’re dead you can’t help them at all. Think about the speech you get from the flight attendant before lift-off. Put on your own oxygen mask first before you help anyone else, even your own child.