Why Zombies?


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marb4
June 4, 2012, 12:28 PM
Can anyone explain to me the recent facination in the firearms world with "zombies"? Everywhere you go you get gun guys talking about their "zombie guns". We've got zombie targets, zombie tactical accessories, even zombie ammo. Did we all suddenly revert back to 6th grade? If you enjoy zombie stuff then great, go for it. I'm just curious where this all this started.

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kayak-man
June 4, 2012, 12:35 PM
Its not just the shooting world. I know plenty of people who aren't into guns that have been bitten by the zombie virus... figuratively.

In the shooting world, I think its a great analog for preparedness.

As much as some of the people here dislike Cracked, they did have a pretty good article about why people think about the zombie apocalypse: http://www.cracked.com/article/136_5-reasons-you-secretly-want-zombie-apocalypse/


Chris "the Kayak-Man" Johnson

Hunterdad
June 4, 2012, 12:39 PM
I am so sick of hearing about this zombie stuff. Unless a dead guy wakes up and starts eating people, we have nothing to worry about.

As far as the ammo and accessories for zombie's.....the companies have caught on to this nonsense and are running with it. And, its working. People are going nuts over this garbage.

blarby
June 4, 2012, 12:43 PM
As far as the ammo and accessories for zombie's.....the companies have caught on to this nonsense and are running with it. And, its working. People are going nuts over this garbage.

And most importantly to us, that "garbage" is dragging people into the fold who were "on the fence" or non- gun owners before the craze and converting them to gun enthusiasts .

Much like westerns did for the boomers.

Skribs
June 4, 2012, 12:43 PM
For one, it's a lot better PR to have the exploding blood-pack targets be paper undead instead of paper "living" targets. The undead are an evil that cannot be reasoned with, and even my anti-gun coworker said if she saw a zombie she'd triple-tap it.

Another reason is that the zombie horde fits with the fear of hordes and sieges that has gone on through the ages. Look in history - it was always hordes that came in and decimated a civilization. The zombie horde is a sort of a way to think about a horde situation.

Also, we've had a few "zombie attacks" recently, so the apocalypse may be coming :P

ETA: Unless a dead guy wakes up and starts eating people, we have nothing to worry about.

Have you heard what bath salts does to people?

elrowe
June 4, 2012, 12:43 PM
Based on a buddy's experience in Katrina as private security contractor for a utility company, post-disaster behavior mirrors zombie movies. The displaced hordes shuffle to any source of light, noise, or smell of food (not to mention anyplace than might have flat-screen TVs in large numbers). Based on his experience, this is not a weak analogy. The main difference is in armament, the guy he had to drop came at him with a machete, not just teeth and fingernails.

Tommygunn
June 4, 2012, 12:45 PM
In the shooting world, I think its a great analog for preparedness.

Yes, this.
It's easier to think of shooting zombies than people as they exist only in fiction and there is no social approbation for killing monsters.
Society may have glommed too far onto this and taken zombie-mania to an extreme ....
George Romero, thank you very much.....

psyopspec
June 4, 2012, 12:47 PM
Pop culture = a mirror for a society's hopes and fears + social fads of the time. I vaguely remember as a young kid of the '80s that there were post-apocalyptic media around very commonly, often having to do with a fictional ending to the real-life nuclear threat. Now our main threat is economic, something hard to understand, assess, and predict; ultimately self-destructive. There are even financial institutions given the zombie title, for they are dead on the inside but continue to exhibit symptoms of life. There is no "us vs them" like in the cold war - rather the fear is that the downfall will be internal, that the "us" will turn on one another.

Heck, it could even be a political reflection. You either have to be parroting Ed Schulz or Bill O'Reilly, not in between. In that way, the divisive automaton nature of the political discourse in this country is also a little reminiscent of a late night zombie flick.

mgmorden
June 4, 2012, 12:49 PM
Zombies are an interesting adversary for a horror movie. For one, they prey on a basic instinct we have as humans - a fear of people that look "wrong". We are programmed at a basic level to pickup cues that a person isn't acting right and avoid them. Its an evolutionary response to make us avoid sick people.

You see the same thing with robotics. Lookup the "uncanny valley" problem. Robots that look too much like people start to creep people out because they don't look/act quite right, and people start mentally classifing them as sick people to be avoided rather than inanimate objects.

So you have the creepy factor there. Now factor in a complete and utter disregard for all things that most adversarys normally would think of. Zombies don't retreat. They don't feel fear. They don't get demoralized when their buddies fall. Heck even an animal will run away if you frighten or injure it.

They literally represent one of the most hopeless scenarios we could be in, and people like to visualize themselves in those types of scenarios because its a chance for people to escape everyday life and become a hero. You can't be a hero going to your job everyday and working on spreadsheets.

Guns get worked into the mix because they're integral to the scenario. You're not going to negotiate with them - zombies must be put down (or ideally, avoided. If you've ever played a good zombie game like Resident Evil you'll quickly learn that it becomes more about not letting the zombies catch you than killing them all. if you kill every zombie you'll run out of ammo).

Its no more "childish" than all those cowboy shows of yesteryear. Going to the range to play uber-serious tactical swat-commando gets boring real fast.

Sam1911
June 4, 2012, 12:49 PM
Well...

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=625413
http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=656935
http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=647647
http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=635405
http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=634367
http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=619925

And on and on and on...

It started in pop culture with a series of movies made loosely off of a wide variety of similarly themed legends, myths, and fairy tales from cultures around the world. It's recent growth in the shooting world has been simply another iteration of the post-apocalyptic fantasizing people who live in developed cultures use to assuage certain inherent psychological urges. As a culture largely enlightened beyond a willingness to call out whole other societies as enemies worthy of slaughter, make-believe human-like creatures fill that need without the messy "reality" of things getting in the way.

But we've beaten the topic to death so many times that its inevitable resurrection seems to give some credence to the theory of the "undead."

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