Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Why The Walking Dead is like crack...

If you are like me, you can't wait for the next season of The Walking Dead to launch.  I have a confession to make.  We actually plan our Sunday nights around The Walking Dead... But, I wasn't always a fan when the show first was aired.

My wife and one of our four sons loved the show and would talk about it constantly.  I thought, and said as much, "How dumb?"  I wondered how a show based on zombies made it past one episode?  It didn't seem, from the outside, to have enough sustainable material and it seemed to be a repetitive mindless idea.  Kill zombies, stay alive.  How simple, and then how boring.  How did I go from avoiding the show to being an addicted fan?  I watched it one night with my wife when she asked me to, then I watched it another time, and then I was hooked.

The elements that have reeled me in are twofold: The sense of community shared within the main characters and the transformation of their mindsets as they endure their struggle.   Those two ingredients make for a real plot and character arc that I didn't have an insight into until I watched the show.

I think the show is so appealing on another more subconscious level too.  Us, the viewers, we live vicariously through the show.  What I mean is, we all want to be able to overcome and to survive whatever challenges life throws at us.  And, the show provides this for us, a chance to cheat death and to conquer the worst situations.  Also, as the characters battle through their post-apocalyptic scenario, they don't have house payments, the economy doesn't effect them, they don't get fired from their jobs, their factory doesn't get outsourced overseas, they don't have high insurance premiums... i.e., they don't have to deal with same problems or carry the same responsibilities we are all trying to escape from.

So, for an hour on Sunday nights, we escape the daily grind and win countless victories from our couches, and then we can't wait until the next week to watch it all over again.... It's so addictive it's almost like the show is laced with crack.

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