That’s What Sarah Said
Sunday, February 12 marked the return of “The Walking Dead” (TWD) season 7, and despite lower ratings for the season in general, the country is still obsessed with zombies.
I’m not a fan of creepy things, but “TWD” has me hooked.
“TWD” follows the journey of a core group of survivors who have made it out of Atlanta, Georgia following a zombie apocalypse.
The group moves north, encountering opposition along the way as well as gaining new members to their group.
All the while, there are zombies ready to eat anyone who isn’t fast or strong enough.
The story has continued for seven seasons with no end in sight yet.
After finally succumbing to the recommendation of my friends three years ago, I decided to take a chance at watching “TWD,” and I sped through the show as fast as I could while still maintaining somewhat of a normal social life.
There was something about the suspense and deep characterization that had me constantly wanting to know what happened next.
I typically hate blood and guts, but with zombies, I could handle it.
It wasn’t real to me because it was zombies.
Zombies are interesting, and maybe that’s why Americans can’t get enough.
Or maybe it’s something else.
In a 2013 article by Meg Kinnard on cnsnews.com, she cites research by former Clemson University professor Sarah Lauro in which Lauro found that zombie obsessions appear when there is cultural dissatisfaction and economic upheaval.
Lauro, whose Twitter handle is @zombiescholar, said, “We are more interested in the zombie at times when as a culture we feel disempowered.
And the facts are there that, when we are experiencing economic crises, the vast population is feeling disempowered.
… Either playing dead themselves … or watching a show like ‘Walking Dead’ provides a great variety of outlets for people”
Though I may not 100 percent agree with Lauro, I think it is much easier for people to look to shows about “dead” humans for entertainment rather than face problems head on.
But I also think some people enjoy zombies for the sheer fact that life after death is a real topic people think about often.
We as humans want to know what life after death holds.
As Christians, we have assurance of what that will look like, but for others, death is an impending event many dread.
Who knows if Americans will stay obsessed with zombies in the coming year or if another supernatural fad will make its way into popular culture, but for the time being, I’m going to enjoy the edge of my seat thrillers as I cheer on Rick and the others in their quest to survive.