AMC's The Walking Dead Season 1 Discussion & Spoilers

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Dream, Oct 30, 2010.

  1. Peter the Younger

    Peter the Younger Commodore Commodore

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    Yeah, trying to use real medical and biological rules for zombies quickly becomes a losing proposition. WW-Z tried mitigate this a bit - the black ooze/blood that is toxic to all other life, including other microbes and parasites, and seems to keep them going even in deep ocean pressures - but the more you know, the harder it is to buy a "scientific" explanation.


    I think a key point is that they didn't know any of those things at the time; as somebody else said, it was early in the war, and Brooks devotes a lot of time to all the bad information floating around. Ironically, the same thing that makes zombies biologically implausible is what makes disastrous counter-strategies more likely; the authorities simply can't/won't accept that these things are reanimated corpses that can only be stopped in a very specific way. It's just "African Rabies", or whatever.

    Having said that, I do agree that really, you would need mass infection throughout the population, then the zombie stage later, in order for this to get really out of hand. Especially if people reanimate automatically on death, and it wasn't known at first. Hospitals might be the first places to get overrun, actually.
     
  2. Silvercrest

    Silvercrest Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    That's not really irony; it's just consistency. It's implausible to them the same way it's implausible to us. The only difference is that if we choose to reject the implausibility, the worst case is an Internet flame war. If they reject the implausibility, it means a disastrous defeat.


    Because those situations could never really happen here.





    ...right???? :evil::evil::evil:
     
  3. FluffyUnbound

    FluffyUnbound Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I agree. Something with a very, very long incubation period and easy transmission person-to-person could be endemic to the population before anyone even knew it existed. That would create the numbers needed to give the zombie plague a shot.

    Going the other way - to 28 Days Later, where any slight scratch turns you into one of the "ragers" in mere seconds - used to sound good to me, but it's got its own problems. One advantage to a slow-acting bug is that you can get infected and then drive yourself to another time zone before you zombie out - so the infection can effectively appear everywhere at once. The "rage virus" can only advance as fast as a man can walk/run after getting infected - and not even that fast if the victims don't move in straight lines. So if the "rage virus" appeared in California today, we'd have weeks to plan how to stop it on at the Mississippi.
     
  4. Corran Horn

    Corran Horn Vice Admiral Admiral

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    One thing I could see is soldiers losing their resolve...based on the fact that the zombies used to be humans as well as that their own families are directly in danger, wherever they may be.
     
  5. Reverend

    Reverend Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I haven't read the WD comic so I don't know their back story, but Brooks has the infection spring board from a few isolated cases to full blown pandemic by having it crop in China first (more or less.) The idea being that the mindset of the Chinese authorities would be to try and suppress it rather than admit there's a problem. Nobody is given a chance to really study the condition and everyone is just told to keep quiet. Before you know it, infected organs from live donors are being smuggled into the west by the triads, blood stocks are tainted before anyone knows there's a horde shuffling their way into India.

    What really struck me a plausible about WWZ was the placebo that some unethical pharmaceutical company sold as a working vaccine against "African rabies." Brooks basically had humanity dooming themselves as much as anything else.
     
  6. FluffyUnbound

    FluffyUnbound Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Brooks did do a good job with that. He takes full advantage of the fact that it's possible to carry his version of the zombie infection for long enough to travel continental distances.

    He also has his zombies be able to walk along the bottom of the ocean, which admittedly would make defending fixed points more difficult.

    Romero has his zombies not cross water [at least until Land of the Dead] and I guess Brooks saw pretty clearly the huge strategic disadvantage that would give his zombie forces.
     
  7. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Wouldn't *anything* on the ocean floor be crushed by the water pressure? Certainly anything that had once been human.
     
  8. FluffyUnbound

    FluffyUnbound Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I was a little unclear about the details of how that worked.

    But he has scenes where dozens of zombies are clinging to the hulls of submarines, for example.

    And zombies walk up on to the beaches of all islands.
     
  9. SicOne

    SicOne Commodore Commodore

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    From "Zombies:A Hunters Guide" by Joseph McCullough, with some paraphrasing...

    "As a general rule, around thirty days seems the cutoff point for a corpse to be reanimated...by then, much of the internal tissue of the body and many organs have turned to mush and escaping gases have ruptured the skin. The first to be affected in a hot zone will be the most recently dead. Hospitals usually form ground zero for a zombie outbreak. One moment, everything is business-as-usual; in the next, a man who has just died on the operating table gets to his feet and attacks the surgeon. Within a few minutes, the corpses in the hospital morgue also reanimate. In less than an hour, funeral parlors and crematoriums are also affected.

    There is a grim irony to outbreaks commonly starting in hospitals. Not only are they places where death and corpses are common, but they are also generally full of the ill and injured who can offer no resistance to an attacking zombie. Thus, a single zombie can kill numerous people in a short space of time. These victims, now part of the recent dead, will also reanimate and join the rampage. In such a way, the number of zombies can easily multiply in the first few hours."

    Now, since we are only seeing the zombiepocalypse from the point-of-view of our group, with only glimpses of the bigger picture provided by Jenner in the CDC, we just don't know how it began, what steps were taken to prevent the outbreak, if it indeed went completely global, who is left alive out there, if the authorities triaged the metropolitan areas and began to fortify smaller towns, what's going on. All we see is what the group knows.
     
  10. sojourner

    sojourner Admiral Admiral

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    Anyone else think the helicopter Rick saw might be a tip of the hat to the original Dawn of the Dead?
     
  11. Silvercrest

    Silvercrest Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Now that really is ironic. (Compared to Peter the Younger's earlier post.)
     
  12. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

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    That's a good thought. It's very likely the military was destabilized right from the beginning.

    Good way to look at it, I guess. I thought it was foreshadowing, but apparently it wasn't; might as well take it as DOTD homage. :rommie:
     
  13. SicOne

    SicOne Commodore Commodore

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    In a way, yes; however, in the comic series, our gang did witness a helicopter land (but that event and subsequent events related to it took place some time in the future from where we are at now in the TV series). So they might follow up on the helicopter in Season 2.

    Or...this might be what inspired the trip to the CDC, the idea that Rick might have thought the chopper was heading there. Clearly it was going somewhere.
     
  14. SicOne

    SicOne Commodore Commodore

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    You've got me curious. Where is that post? I'd like to see it, but don't necessarily wanna wade through forty-plus pages to find it.

    EDIT:Never mind; saw his post, above.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2010
  15. SicOne

    SicOne Commodore Commodore

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    Yeah, that's what I thought, too. Certainly the Zs don't need oxygen to survive, at least in the Max Brooks Universe ("Maxiverse"?), but all that water pressure should squeeze the Zs heads like zits, destroying the brain.

    Walking across a bay or a river? I can see that. But not the deep, deep ocean. And how do they climb to the continental shelf? Gaping plot hole, Max.
     
  16. SicOne

    SicOne Commodore Commodore

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    Thanks for the assist, PsychoPere.
     
  17. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

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    It's unlikely that they could walk across the ocean floor. It's muddy and there are all kinds of ravines and they'd be buffeted by the currents and so forth; and they wouldn't be able to see, so they'd need some magical sense of direction. Maybe they drift like seaweed until they hit land.

    As to why they're not eaten by fish, perhaps the zombification process makes them unpalatable.
     
  18. Reverend

    Reverend Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I think the bit about zombie blood being more like gel than liquid was probably supposed to be how they were able to function at that depth-not the *deep* bottom, but at the crush depth of a Chinese nuclear sub IIRC-as to how they got there I think it had something to do with freighters overloaded with thousands of smuggled refugees dumping everyone into the drink after an outbreak. It's not shown to be much of a direct threat, more of an ongoing nuisance in the clean-up period with ghouls occasionally washing up on coast lines or just walking out of the surf. Either way, swimming in the ocean, seas or lakes would no longer hold much appeal.
     
  19. Canadave

    Canadave Vice Admiral Admiral

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    There is a bit of a handwave by Brooks—getting turned into Zach changes the body's physiology so that it is able to withstand things that regular humans cannot. Such as internal fluids congealing to more of a gel, inexplicable resistance to rot\decay, and their ability to walk on the ocean floor. Does it make sense? Perhaps not, but he does at least acknowledge it.
     
  20. Morpheus 02

    Morpheus 02 Commodore Commodore

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    i think that indeed is how zombies could cross oceans or wash ashore.

    Assuming that the initial zombification started suddenly, all over the world. If you're on a Carnival cruise, and justhappen to be in the middle of the ocean (or at leats in between islands), it's possible that a boatload (literally) of people get infected. And as it's a new thing, people who have gotten bitten may jump overboard to get away, not knowing that they'll get zombified anyway.

    And certainly issues like smuggled people will add to it as well.