Calliope Writing


I Will Always Want to Eat Your Brrraaaiinnnnnsssss
May 14, 2015, 2:47 pm
Filed under: Literature | Tags: , ,

zombies in horrorI was exposed to the horror genre at a young age. No, I don’t mean I was a preteen sneaking into R-rated movies. I was five years old, snuggled up against my parents on the couch. (Don’t worry–they told me to close my eyes during the sex scenes.)

This probably goes without saying, but I had disturbing, terrible nightmares and soon depended upon a nightlight to get any rest.

This love of gore and chills has followed me since that first scary movie, and I love pretty much all subgenres that typically fall under the label “horror.” One subgenre in particular has its rotten, fleshy grip on my heart:

Zombies.

I truly fell in love with zombies after watching the film 28 Days Later (2002). This was around the beginning of what was to be more than a decade of zombie fandom, and it was definitely the start of my personal zombie fandom.

According to the trustworthy* Wikipedia, the first piece of literature about zombies was Lovecraft’s story “Herbert West—Reanimator,” published in 1921. Oh, Wikipedia. You sweet, poor, naive creature. This simply is not so.

Mentions of zombies–or, as they were referred to in more “refined” times, the undead or ghouls–in storytelling can be traced back to The Epic of Gilgamesh, from the delightful Middle Ages (specifically, the 18th century BCE). See for yourself:

If you do not give me the Bull of Heaven,

I will knock down the Gates of the Netherworld,

I will smash the doorposts, and leave the doors flat down,

and will let the dead go up to eat the living!

And the dead will outnumber the living!

Translated by Maureen Gallery Kovacs

So, long before the eerie, unforgettable words “They’re coming to get you, Barbara” (Night of the Living Dead1968) were spoken, people were already more than a little creeped out by flesh-eating zombies.

Are you a lover of the undead? (If not, why the hell not?)

*For those who didn’t notice my sarcasm: Wikipedia is never, ever to be trusted.
scary zombie

3 Comments so far
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I really like zombie movies, because they show us how easily life can teach us humility when we think the impossible just can’t happen. It’s like a metaphor of being subject to forces beyond our control. I stopped watching them for a few years, but now I am on the lookout for more. Nicely written post. Cheers! 🙂

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Comment by AdamB

I just wanted to mention, ”Z Nation.” It’s like the, ”Walking Dead” with a lighter touch. Forgot, sorry about that.

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Comment by AdamB

I remember this girl: Samantha. She couldn’t stand zombie flicks. Romantic comedy with patriotic undertones was her thing. Pfft.

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Comment by Sarah




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