Today at work we got to talk about zombies, and I realised that’s another area were my willingness to suspend my disbelief is not enough. Why, you ask. Are they too scary?
On the contrary. Zombies are up there with werewolves and goblins as so totally unbelievable as to make me laugh. I just can’t take them seriously. Maybe that’s why the only instance when I find them acceptable are the Discworld books, because most things in there are not what they seem but more importantly they’re set on DISCWORLD, which is the opposite of our world, and thus a mirror, nothing else.
Zombies in OUR world? Excuse me. Just don’t believe.
Not that I find wizards any more believable. Possibly that’s the reason I just can’t stand Urban Fantasy. I need real good world building, High Fantasy style, to believe anything beyond FTL (Faster Than Light) (which by the way also is quite unbelievable but I want it to be a possibility, so humankind can go to the stars some day. And NASA’s putting money that way, so maybe??? *holding thumbs*).
So, no, while some of my colleagues at work seemed to think I Am Legend was a good film I don’t think I’ll watch OR read it.
And no, I don’t think Dracula or Nosferatu, in any incarnation I’ve seen or read, are scary, either. They’re interesting, though, especially when contemplated besides each other, for the different views they afford us on how we’ve handled the Other through time.
This might be the reason why such stories are so popular – a manifestation of our collective need to come to grips with the fact that large parts of the world is NOT like me and you, whatever ‘me’ is. These stories provide the tools to disseminate and analyse and channel, however unconsciously, our fear or distrust of the other. A need that grows more pressing in times when we are supposed to like and embrace that which is not like us.
At least, that’s one way to look at it. This don’t make me like zombies any better, though ;-)