Saturday, July 23, 2011

Zombie Apocalypse 101 Brought to You by the CDC

Back in May of this year, the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) actually made a web page about how to handle a zombie apocalypse. You don´t even know how excited I was about this. Most people are surprised to find out that I love zombie movies, but I really do. And the reason I like this is because they are really all about public health.

As the zombie genre has moved far beyond it´s mystical origins, it depends more and more on science to appear plausible. Zombieism in its current cinematic form is usually presented as an extremely contagious type of virus. The zombie-virus most closely resembles rabies in that it makes victims extremely aggressive and is transmitted by a bite. Of course, from there it loses any semblance of real science.

At the moment there is no virus that provokes cannibalism in people.

I like zombie movies like Resident Evil, 28 Days Later, I Am Legend and Rec because the zombie epidemic could be substituted for any national disaster. How would the government react? How would the CDC react? Usually, it acts like a heartless dictator, brutally pushing people into quarantine. I think the CDC´s webpage on the subject is hilarious, because government institutions often play the villain is these types of movies. The CDC itself is often the bad guy in a hazmat suit, tearing apart relatives.

These movies show people stocking up on food and water, barricading their doors and windows, carrying flashlights. All things you should do to prepare for a hurricane.

I also like movies about the zombie apocalypse because I am convinced I would survive one.

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