We might not admit it, but as gamers we have all got a contingency plan. We all know that the zombie plague is imminent. We’ve played enough games and watched enough television to know how best to soldier on throughout the apocalypse. You’ve had that thought at the back of your mind that maps out exactly where every item you could need is in your house. Hell, even what clothes you would wear! You know the best routes to your family’s homes, and the likelihood of them even surviving at all. Am I right? Or am I alone on this?
Now I watched something on TV a few days ago that really surprised me. Shocked me in fact. It really got the cogs turning in my noggin.
I’ll give you a little bit of back story first; and for those of you across the pond, hopefully explain a few things us British are accustomed to by now. I don’t know if anyone’s familiar living outside of the British Isles in regard to how our TV works, you might be as the BBC have certainly gone global and their reach around the globe is mental. In the UK, the BBC originally occupied Channel 1 and Channel 2 of our analogue television sets. We used to have 5 channels before the digital age: ‘BBC One’, ‘BBC Two’, ‘ITV’, ‘Channel 4’ and ‘Channel 5’. Yep, so original. These channels have remained over the years and have expanded into sister-stations such as E4, More4, ITV2, 5STAR and 5USA amongst others, but thats irrelevant. Channel 4 is known for its garish programs, looking at controversial topics and what-not. Netflix’s Black Mirror spawned from this and what a show that is! Anyway, earlier this year, Channel 4 started an indie-type project called ‘Random Acts’. The broadcaster has basically thrown money at young directors and created a space where artists can actually just create, using the TV as a canvas. It’s a collection of shorts, one of which explores the zombie outbreak we’ve all been waiting for, aptly titled ‘I Dream of Zombies’. It’s only four minutes long and is worth a watch below. Alternativly, you can watch it on the Random Acts website here. Be sure to check out some other cool shorts they’ve made.
In essence, it’s a short comedy. It features a young guy who watches and plays zombie films and games respectively. He prepares for the inevitable un-dead invasion, honing his skills with bows and cricket bats. One morning, he wakes up to find his dreams have come true, with a horde of the walking dead outside his house. Unable to contain his glee, he suits up and ventures outside with an assortment of weapons to meet the zombies only to realise not everything was as he expected.
Now what shocked me wasn’t this little clip. I saw the humour in the twist at the end and found it rather relatable. What shocked me, was the reaction the general public had of it. Another program to feature on Channel 4 is series called ‘Gogglebox’. It’s basically a load of random people, sat in their homes watching TV and the entertainment value is supposedly watching their reactions to the programs they are shown. It’s like viewer-inception! You’re watching people on TV watch TV and it’s somehow become a national treasure.
These families were shown this clip, and they watched in horror. They found it disgusting that someone could actually think the things that this young lad was thinking. I agree that to prepare in such a way and to live your life as he does would be incredibly worrying to witness in reality. But this was a program. A sketch. A simple vision from a young and budding director. I thought the flak it received was unnecessary. Me and my friends have often discussed how we’d do things in the event of a catastrophic, world-ending event and saw nothing wrong with it. Maybe it was just our childish minds running away with things, but surely I wouldn’t be classed under this ‘insane’ category as these families were stigmatising this character to?
Perhaps I am insane then. I mean, if a middle-aged Mancunian with twenty dogs thinks so, then there’s clearly nothing for it but to lock me up and slip that straightjacket on!
Forget it, I’ll just go to the Winchester, have a nice cold pint, and wait for all of this to blow over.
But who’d look after my State Of Decay community?