What do vampires and zombies have in common?
They both bore me to death.
As if in response to the teenage heartthrob vampires taking up space on the big screen, people seeking a more grown-up alternative have embraced the zombie genre.
Knowing that zombies will never sparkle unless someone throws glitter on them, writers and directors have gone the opposite direction. Today’s zombie movies and shows seem to be made with one goal in mind: making every moment as disgusting as possible.
I admit that part of the fun of the zombie genre lies in the gross-out moments. But after watching the season premiere of AMC’s “The Walking Dead” this week, I’m convinced there’s not much substance under all the blood and guts.
The first episode, “Seed,” felt less like the beginning of a story and more like a tour of the advancements that have been made in makeup effects.
It makes me miss the kind of zombies that lumbered through George A. Romero’s early movies, often with little more than bluish paint on their faces.
Movies like “Dawn of the Dead” took the time to explore what human beings might do when put under the pressure to survive. The threat of zombies could be, and has been, replaced with anything — other plagues, wars, famine. Zombies just made it a little more fun.
These days, I can’t seem to find anything in the horror genre that takes the time to tell a story. In an effort to add something new and exciting to the musty “zombie apocalypse” formula, “The Walking Dead” has gone all out — in the wrong direction.
It’s fine for the characters to become desensitized, or just plain bored of zombies, after two seasons of battling them. The problem comes when the audience feels the same way.
No amount of intestines is going to faze the kind of person who would sit down and watch “The Walking Dead.” Until the evil takes on a more human face (which, I suspect, it will), I’ll be wasting my time with the second season of “American Horror Story.”
Call Laurel Black, a Paducah Sun staff writer, at 270-575-8641.