Zombie movies and series are rarely about monsters. In fact, Too often monster movies don’t tell us about monsters, but use them as a reagent To talk about people. How humans react to demons, or what does this say about our behavior when faced with a fundamentally strange situation, such as coming face to face with a creature that questions our idea of normality.
In some cases it is as obvious as zombies, that is, from its classic configuration, such as George A. Romero’s early trilogy that begins with ‘Night of the Living Dead’ and continues with his most influential film, ‘Zombie’. , a background that uses demons. The zombie movies that really interest are the ones examining how humans organize themselves around a decaying world.
Romero’s films were seminal in that sense, and have served as the template for everything to come in the genre, even the more passive zombies from the success of “28 Days Later” and other films in those lines. Viral turned mystic to explain resurgence and contagion turned infected furious. But almost always the living dead and mass-infected people have acted as circumstantial ornaments to talk about. How will we behave if the social rules and structures that govern us fall apart,
The clearest case is, paradoxically, Romero’s return to the visual and thematic style with great success. Mainstream Zombies of recent years, ‘The Walking Dead’. The AMC series reaffirms the premise that we come to this type of story not to see the monsters (though the practical effects of the gore and rotten ones in this series are especially palpable), but to see that How the living are organized through your environment. Or as he said in the original Robert Kirkman comic, to verify that “we’re dead”.
comparisons rise from the grave
The most frequent comparisons to HBO’s adaptation of The Last of Us point to The Walking Dead. This is logical: in both cases dead/infected A menacing background noise that affects absolutely all aspects of the protagonist’s life, But it does not have a real physical role. He is hardly seen in the first episode. In the second, we see them, but they don’t steal an iota of prominence from the trio of humans who enter their domain.
As we talked about in our analysis of this second chapter, it makes all the sense in the world to have less action (and with it, fewer monsters) than the games in the series. The dynamics of a video game can’t ignore conflict, but a series goes in the opposite direction: it requires the audience’s emotional involvement, which the game achieves simply by putting a controller in the player’s hands. And for that, what the series is looking for is more humans and less monsters to identify with.
We were talking a few days ago about ‘Melanie: The Girl with All the Gifts’ as a powerful alternative to ‘The Last of Us’ with its usual curious plot points. One of them is the girl protagonist, who like Ellie is infected with the fungus, although in ‘Melanie’ the heroine develops an insatiable appetite that makes her an approximation to the monsters that have decimated civilization. Her eternal debate between the most primitive instincts and the need to preserve her human friends is what makes her most interesting. That reasonless monster… Or that human who only works to shoot.
‘The Last of Us’ knows this too, and that’s why it constantly keeps suspense about whether Ellie will end up developing symptoms: because it erodes her relationship with Joel and affects their adventure. Is. Zombies may not be the most interesting monsters in the world, but they fascinate so many viewers and players when they mix with humans or when they serve as triggers for tragedy.