The very stupid walking dead

AMC’s The Walking Dead is nicely made, looks good, and has some real chills, but I can’t respect it. First off, the “injured guy wakes up in a hospital after all hell broke loose,” thing was done in 28 Days Later in 2002. The AMC series has no excuse because the comic on which it’s based started in 2003. Even if the comic did it, the authors of the comic should have known better, and so should the producers of the show. I hear their next pitch is about a teenage girl who falls in love with a vegetarian vampire…

Second, the protagonist runs into two other humans — as far as he knows, the only two other humans, and a day/thirty minutes later they’re splitting up. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a zombie apocalypse or just being lost at Disneyland, you don’t split up. There’s just no excuse for that.

Third, having driven out of town, the protagonist immediately runs out of gas. Was the gauge broken? Did he not bother to check? That level of stupidity is topped only by what he does next, which is abandon the car for a horse. I’ll say that again: he trades in a car for a horse. When there are zombies. A car. For a horse. Zombies. With that level of stupidity, I just want him to die so maybe the show can focus on someone who doesn’t have an empty skull.

Then there are the myriad little things: he wears a face shield when he takes a zombie out with a bat, presumably so as not to become infected, but then shoots another zombie point blank for no reason (hint: that’s likely to get blood on you) According to the wikipedia page for the comic, the bite itself doesn’t turn you, it just kills you, and then after death you turn into a zombie. But there’s no evidence for that in the show so far, so shooting one in the face when you don’t have to is just dumb. As is not finding a working radio — the other survivors are guilty of that one. It goes on.

It’s okay for the protagonist to make mistakes now and then, but this level of total incompetence is unwatchable.


31 thoughts on “The very stupid walking dead

  1. Brandon

    Even though I defend that these "mistakes" can be reasoned out; you’re letting very small things (that are very beside the point) bring a very good episode down.The zombie apocalypse hasn’t happened yet. Let’s remember that no one has any real clue as to how they would actually react to it. So let’s not pretend to be experts.

  2. Geoff Canyon

    People are exposed to bad situations all the time — not the ravenous undead, obviously, but war, crime, etc. A war movie about stupid soldiers who split up and didn’t arm themselves would be a bad war movie.I’m not pretending to be an expert, I’m just talking common sense. When in danger, don’t split up unless you must — that’s too basic to ignore. If a writer is going to have a character violate that guideline, there should be an explanation: the character is stupid, the character is unbalanced, etc.

  3. Brian D. Davis

    Your problem with them using a story vehicle from another zombie movie seems fairly weak since most of the genre starts their stories alike in some fashion or another. If you want to call foul on that so be it. As to him leaving the only two other living people he has found, I can understand that he wants to leave and he did offer to bring them with him Rick who is still in shock and not really filtering the events of what has happened only wants to find his family. If I woke in the same situation I wold be out to find my wife and kids or die trying. Traveling alone is safer than in a group if you are trying to go unseen. The car did not run out of gas just after a few minutes of leaving town, that was a montage showing that he was constantly looking for fuel. The horse is a better choice since it does not need fuel other than what it eats, doesn’t make engine noise to draw them to you, and he did say he was almost to Atlanta at that point, so in his mind he was a short ride away from security. As for the radio, they seem to be using a 2 Meter band radio and the range on them are not great and when buildings come into play your lose a lot of signal reception not to mention that with power down the repeaters that help reception in cities would be all but down. You are approaching this as if the characters would have gone through one of Max Brook’s Zombie Survival lectures. You are watching a show about zombies so if you can’t suspend disbelief for a bit, I wouldn’t watch it. You seem to think of it as a video game story where you do A obviously to react to B that was presented to you. The real world doesn’t work like that so why would it in the case of a zombie apocalypse?

  4. Geoff Canyon

    There are 250 million cars in the United States, and over 100,000 gas stations. The likelihood of running out of gas is 0. A car isn’t very loud if you’re not going fast. A car can kill zombies easily and nearly endlessly while keeping you protected. A car can travel more than ten times as far in a day while not tiring you out riding it, and it can carry a small arsenal in the trunk. It’s important to note that a zombie can cover more ground in a day (assuming it doesn’t get tired or need to sleep) than a horse can. So once they’ve spotted you you’re screwed on a horse.As far as the general principles of staying alive: this really has nothing to do with being prepared for the zombie apocalypse, and everything to do with general survival. If you were lost in the woods and you ran into two other people who were also lost, would you split up, or stay together? In dealing with zombies, one person has to sleep unprotected, while three can keep watch, so it’s clearly not safer to be on your own. I can suspend disbelief just fine; I have no problem with the biggest leap after all: zombies. I just can’t stand stupid protagonists. If I root for their death as an improvement to the overall gene pool, that’s not good.Finally, There are only two stories I know of that start with the zombie apocalypse happening while a man in a coma misses it. That’s a pretty specific trope. By comparison you have the far more generic "something bad happened and it spread" trope in Night of the Living Dead, Zombieland, Resident Evil, etc., etc. The man-in-coma trope is too specific (for me) to be recycled so completely.

  5. Brian D. Davis

    Gas stations have gas because they are resupplied weekly, not monthly and if that supply is disrupted by, oh I don’t know, an uprising of the dead, then that supply is drained quickly by people trying to get away and buying what supply they had. Gas shortages have happened in short order when supply or refineries have had problems. As far as him staying with other people, if they were not willing to leave and his desire (only desire you have when you don’t know that your wife and kids are safe) was to find his family then he really didn’t have a choice about staying with them. He (like most men with families) main drive is to find and protect them in this time of crisis.You don’t think cars make much sound because of all the background noise and noise pollution that we hear everyday. Take a long drive down a deserted country road and see how much noise your car makes in contrast to stark silence. Also, if you watch, you see that he has a bond of empathy with this living creature that he has found fenced in by long dead masters. There is great debate about who came up with the story hook of the coma entrance into the new undead world first. The Walking Dead appeared on bookstore shelves the year after the movie 28 Days Later. Not a full year mind you so we should say months. Book publishing, even comic book publishing does not happen overnight, nor does movie making for that matter. I don’t know who came up with the concept first and to be honest, it matters little in the bigger picture of it all. Both stories are compelling in the genre of zombie movies because the are character driven and not monster driven. If you seek to find fault with almost any book, then you shall. If the hero in a book did only sensible things and safe strategies then they would fall far short of what we call heroes. Remember your argument is that an average person would have done "this" or "that" but the average person did not last the short time he was in a coma, so following the average guy logic didn’t seem to fair well. The technical aspects that you seem to want to pick apart are small in comparison to the quality of the project. You stated some of those at the first of your critique. Trust me, I have seen enough really bad zombie movies in my day. Romerro has not made even a fair one in decades so I appreciate the better ones. We could go on all day about how the officer in the beginning checked his safety on his Glock handgun ( they don’t have a safety). how the cop cars chasing the criminals closely at high speed managed to stop short of the road spikes, or Why Rick has a big wild west revolver, while every other officer has a more contemporary and accepted firearm. Every story, movie, and television show will have continuity issues but just because the characters don’t do as we would have had them do, does not mean it is a bad story, it just means it is a story we did not write.

  6. John

    This is an interesting debate, except that the show itself is boring, so who cares? The problem is that zombies are just not that interesting for extended periods of time. It takes about the length of one movie to be tired of them (even 28 Days Later was pushing it). I know, it’s supposed to be character driven. That would work if there were any characters who were interesting, sympathetic, or at least funny. Instead we have a bunch of tedious people reciting bad dialog and then running from the dead people. I stuck it out for three weeks based on critics liking it, but it commits the absolute worst sin for a show like this: I almost fell asleep watching it.

  7. jsun

    Hmm, my favorite part is when the guy on the roof saws his hand off as opposed to the rusty metal bar… i remember that from my effort skimming through the graphic novel. It does seem strange that they would try to recreate the graphic novel and not tweak dialogue and events to make a overall more enjoyable product.

  8. sui

    ok … I ‘m not trying to be harash or anything but how the hell those 30+ zombs get so close to them without anyone notice? I mean they have build the camp for awhile and they already know it’s just a matter of time pack of zomb will show because they saw one from last episodeso it just didnt occur to them that they NEED something to alarm them if zomb actually show and they can have sometime to run???? or they did but they just did nothing with it and “hope” zomb will never show!? I completely get it’s nonsense to even think they can make the camp a fortress but if they cant even make anything that can warn them just few mins ahead, why not just live in the cities? at least there are walls…. ok…. if you think that is asking too much…. think about this….. if they got attack when they went to sleep, it’s still acceptable (even tho still doesnt make sense of them staying there, knowing zombies are starting to leave the city and approaching, yet not doing anything about it) but then they still got like a few hours to walk so close when they are asleep…… but not now it’s like on top of all those nonsense…. they cant even realize zombs are walking to them untill they are like 10 inches away AWAKE… !@#$@!$#$@#$?plus going back to first epi… how can u argue the lack of common sense or how stupid the protagonist is? I mean even if I ignore all teh pts of why he pick a horse instead of a car, so yes walking to a city when knowing there’s a lot a zombies in it(just common sesne, highly populate cities with so many empty cars pack on the exit yet not even one car at the entrance, go figure)then he just walk in with a horse without a plan and hope he wont run into any zombies? yes it can outrun may be a few ,but right there’s only going to be a few zombies in a big ruin cities ….. then to a even more stupid moment, when he try to close the top of the tank, yes any human will not just close it immdiately when a zombies sit right next to it(n he just got attk by another one inside) but he still have like almost 20 secs to look at the bag of the guns then close it… dude this isnt even lack of common sense can cover… human basically just dun act that way in those kind of situation…(if a pack of robbery is chasing you and you trying to shut them up anywhere, right ! you will still pause n stare at some guns like ten steps away when their hands is alreadi grabbing the door nod) also about the noise…. just reading back to history…. may be car make more noise, but so does horse, if he actually consider about the noise problem, he would try to wrap sum clothing under it at least when he is going into the city..(this is not out of the blue… people from thousand years ago actually did that to do sneak attack in war ) Never say this is crap or watsoever… but just admit it has lots of flaws, n not just to the details (for this part you can look at "im Legend") but to some major major scene…. like when he just walk into a cities with a horse without having a plan ,or shot a zombies that dun even have legs when ammo is one of the most important supplies at those time(i get why he did it , just not the weapon choice,especially he is not in n intense moment and the zomb can hardly move)

  9. sui

    and the end of epi 4 too.. major moment that force them to leave.. right zombies that cant think can just get so close n not get spottedif the camp is so badly constructed i’m suprise why these people is still aliveit’s not even a suprise attk… they know they are coming from the first zomb shows in last epi n still did nothing about it

  10. Morgoth

    I have just finished episode 2 and have to say that it is beyond me how these people ever survived the initial outbreak. They are stupid and do ridiculous things. There is strength in numbers, so why break up and leave people behind? They let that red neck idiot live? Why? So he can come back and get revenge? Now you have zombies and red neck coming after you. Just stupid.The lead is a real moron for being a cop and is giving law enforcement officials a bad name. If I was in the group, I would kill him before he had a chance to get me killed. They oriental guy seems to have his crap in one bag, so I would team up with him.The retarded things the main characters keep doing is keeping me rooting for their unpleasant demise, while hoping that someone with even the intelligence of a six grader shows up to save the day.I will watch a few more episodes to see if it gets any better, but I am not going to hold my breath.

  11. Wendy Flay

    Why doesn’t he leave messages in places that can’t be missed by other survivors?Why isn’t putting a pair of shoes and trousers on a prioriy?Why isn’t getting some kind of weapon a priority?Why isn’t checking radio and tv broadcasts at this point important?Why does he leave the only two humans in the area alone?Why with all the kick-ass combat vehicles with radio’s lying about everywhere doesn’t he use one to travel in?Knowing that sound attracts zombies, why does he take a metal shod horse to obviously the most zombie concentrated area on the map, a city covered in concrete and dash about surprised when he find that there is a high zombie concentration there. The poor horse gets eaten alive. Even some guy on a radio called him a ‘Dumbass’ shortly after that point but I guess he couldn’t hear on account of having almost permanantly deafening himself shortly before the broadcast. I will watch the next episode to see if the man on the radio is taking over as the hero, he’s got to be a better bet and advert for mankind as survivalist.

  12. jeffdan

    i definitely agree with the comment. I find this series so stupid. The main character was a law enforcer and yet he looks so dumb stupid. I wished he didnt just get the horse to join him. The poor horse died because of his stupidity. And sitting next to a zombie inside a tank…. Freaking stupid guy for a freaking stupid TV series…..How the hell did he survive at a hospital sleeping without being eaten…..

  13. Kristopher Hogan

    How about the fact that, in the first episode, we see dozens of military humvees and M923 series 5 Ton cargo trucks and the main character just passes them by thoughtlessly. Military tactical vehicles do not require a key to start the engine, there are simply two switches, a battery switch and a starter switch. Also, they are run on diesel, have large capacity fuel tanks, sometimes even two fuel tanks that can switched between while driving, an enormous storage space for supplies including a generous supply of five and ten gallon fuel cans, tools, self inflating tires, military communications radios, ect. A m-923 series 5 ton, of which I saw at least three, get unbelievable gas mileage, have a 65 gallon fuel tank, can be used as a weapon, and can run over just about any other obstacle on the road, like other cars, trash, fallen trees, fallen building rubble, oh… and of course .. ZOMBIES

  14. Geoff Canyon

    Wow, nice catch — yeah, I'm torn between watching the new season and amputating one of my own kidneys with a melon baller. It was particularly gratifying to read an interview with one of the producers where they said that they were especially proud of how they try to imagine what would really happen.

  15. setharian

    How long could he have been alive, unmonitored, in the hospital before starving / dehydrating to death? An IV will last maybe a day or two. So we’re likely talking about a couple of weeks tops?? After which he awakes (quite healthy) and the world is overrun by zombies. Wouldn’t there be food, weapons, gas and supplies galore?? How could the world use EVERYTHING up in such a short period? Does he raid household cupboards? Siphon gas? Stock up on vitamins? Go "Rambo"? No, he takes off in a squad car, runs out of fuel and ends up on a horse. Good grief, who wrote that crap?Furthermore, after what had to be a very short time alone in the hospital, his loyal wife is having a torrid affair with his best friend. That might be okay if she was a complete backstabbing skank as a character. But no, she’s sooooo guilt-ridden and shocked when he shows up alive …. after what … 2-4 weeks? Pfft.Lastly, there are zombies everywhere. Let’s make a camp in the middle of the woods with utterly no defenses. Fantastic plan. When the zombies eventually showed up and start gnawing on people as was utterly predictable, I was rooting for the zombies.I concur, this is one dumb show.

  16. Joe X

    This show is retarded, the stupiditu of the characters in this show is overwhelming. How the f…k (and i dont care how many brainless zombies could take out, a fortified platoon or even section of infanteers. I mean these guys are traine to engage and destroy enemies far more deadly the some brainless, and slow as F..K zombie.STUPID.

  17. Joe X

    I want all of them just die, and restart the series, i dont care if it has the same name. ……atually i do. how about ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE!!!!>>>>>>>>>>>other subject:they should hire infantry soldiers to get their perspective how would they handle zombie out break,on their personal level..>>>>>>>>>in reality zombie outbreak would be impossible, unless it would turn zombies in hulklike raging, fast, regenerating, killers, im talking "I AM LEGEND" hulk size zombies, now that’s more realistic.slow stupid zombies, nay, the goverment will be able to put a fast lid on that.

  18. Joe X

    In this world, there is nothing more stressful that being hunted by a man armed with ASSAULT RIFLE.So F…K the zombies.

  19. tmcbpatriot

    Dude, I am with you on your complaints about this retarded show. But the one thing you id not mention and the one thing that is sticking in my craw…Why doesn’t the protagonist ask the humans, the first ones he has "alive" since waking from a coma, WHAT THE FU**CK IS GOING ON?????!!!!" This is the most fundamental, simplest question that any person with even a smidgen of thought would think to ask the first person he/she sees. But this guy, a COP NO LESS, who is trained to ask questions and to wonder what the hell is going on, DOES NOT ASK WHAT IS GOING ON!!!! He just seems to accept that after waking from a coma that his family is missing and everyone is a zombie! Jesus! DId the writers of this show miss this point? Did they really think that a person would just go with it after waking to a world such as this? It is enraging that they missed this. I am watching this screaming into the screen this fundamental question. Ugh. Why bother. I set my standards way too high it seems. Too bad. I was hoping to get into this show. Now all I want is to see this moron, who is about as inquisitive as one of the zombies, get killed so at least there is some satisfaction.

  20. Geoff Canyon

    @tmcbpatriot: wow, good catch. It would have taken about thirty seconds for him to say, "What happened?" and for someone to answer, "Not sure. It just happened one day. There were some reports on the radio about the government looking into it, but then nothing."

  21. tmcbpatriot

    Thanks for the reply. So I have been watching more episodes and so far I have to say the first episode was the most brainless. The rest of it is pretty good. Not something I would re-watch, but decent for a late night. I have to say though I really was hoping by episode 5 that someone would tell this guy what happened while he was in a coma, but still nothing. He still hasn’t asked yet! Ok…so it’s some kind of virus. That’s it? How long was he in a coma? He never even asked what year it was, what day it was. Is there a President? A Govt? Is everyone on their own? Is this hapening all over the world? Also, with regards to the hero being a cop, I am sure nothing really ever happened to him in his smal town, but was his cop training so bad that after stopping a speeding car and having taken out two people in the car, with other cops nearby, that he would stand up in the road and take his eyes off the vehicle only to get shot? What cop would do this after such an incident? You secure the scene and make sure there is no more danger before you just stand up and start talking to your partner, all the while taking your eyes completely off the vehicle and the dead people. I can suspend belief about the zombies, but a cop taking his eyes away from two dead perps without securing the scene is just unacceptable.

  22. tmcbpatriot

    Also, the writers are very unimaginative too and the characters hollow. The editors are good with the suspense part, but I don’t care about any of these people. When the zombies got into the camp and started attacking, I did not caring about the characters as much as I did not want to see a child get killed. Not that child, per se, just A child.

  23. tmcbpatriot

    Oh and in episode 2, the hero grabbed a grenade in the tank before he made a run for it. We never saw it again. Big faux pas for a writer to do something like that. In episode when the dead kill at the campy site, were they brought there by the one handed guy? Did he drive them there in the truck and let them loose? Are we left wondering? We’ll see.

  24. tmcbpatriot

    Also love the comments about the tanks and wondering why he never thought to drive it out of there. At least try it. So you never drove a tank before. You would not even be curious to see if you could? And also about the length of time he was out of it. Not long enough for his wound to heal and not long enough for the zombies to wander in and eat him! And that leads me to wonder why he was not eaten. He would have smelled alive even is he was asleep right. Or do you have to be awake for a zombie to sniff you? If so then just play dead! And with regards to the whole world becoming zombies….did Ron Paul become President in this world? Was the CDC non existent? They just ignored this outbreak? And if it happened in such a short period of time then why is it taking so long for that blonde girl in episode 4 to awaken as a zombie in episode 5? I could go on and on. OK. Back to watching.

  25. Unknown

    Did nobody else realize the fact that they left an entire truck full of sealed clean water on the highway and now they continue to get their water from dirty wells one of which they already found a zombie in?Or the fact they continue to smash zombies with bats and blunt objects with no regard for the blood splashing back in their faces?The hill billie hunting for food with the same knife and arrows he uses to kill zombies with?They would all be dead by now in my opinion.

  26. Uknown

    Oh ya and the fact they only have 700 rounds of assorted ammunition to last them for who knows how long and Sean wants to take everyone out for some target practice fucking brilliant!

  27. tmcbpatriot

    In a world where everyone is dead and obviously decomposed or decomposing….would it not be nearly impossible to walk outside without vomiting from the smell? Or the risk of typhoid or some other horrible virus from all the rotting corpses just walking around or lying around for who knows how long? Not a mention of the smell. And where are all the flies?

  28. Uknown

    And what about the zombies excrement aswell they must have to shit at some point after eating all that flesh. Nobody thinks hard enough about how life would turly be in that kind of situation or the network just won’t allow it on their TV shows/games. I love zombie movies and games but I have yet to find one that someone has really thought out every thing and just went for it. this show is one of the best zombie movies/games that I’ve seen but just like the rest of them you can sit here and pick them apart all day and of course I’m going to.The personal problems and bullshit between the charaters in this show is so retarded shane and lorri are the biggest hypocrytes. Everyone just rides ricks ass about everything going back for the guns that shane never shuts up about but rick was stupid to go back and get them right?he is also dumb for going to the CDC according to them but where in the fuck else would go, seriously where else would you find any sort of answers for your questions either go to the CDC or drive 100 miles not knowing if either place is even safe rick chooses the close option of course which one would you choose? but no they still ride he ass.

  29. volstag

    it is pathetic, they are pathetic, the zombies are pathetic. and its soo borring, where are the zombies? you only see them twice a show. but my main grumple is why does no one put on some appropriate protective clothing? there is this terrible disease passed on by bites or blood or spit or something and half the characters are wearing summer skirts tshirts and shorts, what about some fucking chainmail armour and a broadsword? or a mask and some goggles or just some gloves?

  30. Mark

    This show is so awesome…Everyone on RANGE day has Glock’s/Beretta’s/Revolvers ETC ETC ETC and shoot through ammo like it is actully laying around in the streets….. BUT when they go out on a mission they go with a Deer Rifle(4 shots)1 Shotgun(6 shots extended tube) 1 revolver(6 shots)1 semi auto pistol and a total of what 50 shellls total? I have hunted with people that have brought more ammo than that for a squirrel hunt!!! Oddly enough the Baddest dude on the show seems to be content with wandering around with 1 BOLT FOR HIS BADASS CROSSBOW? JESUS a 800 year old technology will keep you alive when a Browining 50 cal gets you killed! It is TRULY ASSININE the level of stupidity and dumb luck that would not keep you alive especially when over half of the Zombie’s seem to be in either Military or Government uniforms or in a M-1 Abraham Tank! I spent some time in the Army and picked up on the fact that Tanks are pretty hard to overun..Ask the last 75 years of soliders that have fought them with training and rarely win even with training. I know that suspense keeps us coming back but after awhile if the people deserve the death so be it! FInally when you find a group of people that are not infected they tell you to move on out to the wasteland? Gotta love it. My 8 year old son knows more about how to defend himself than people who have spent how many months in the Apocolyspe? I have missed my calling now that I look back over my life..Writer/Director Hollywood Extra? The Sheriff did save face when he came to grips with the fact that when your wife thinks your dead it is okay to sleeep with your best friend and to have his baby. Because after the end of the world there will be a lot of the Morning After Pills Laying Around since no one will really need them right? I am a huge fan of the new direction they are going with where you try to keep the walkers that you love alive until you find a cure after the demise of the CDC? The most advanced research facility in the world.. Sadly enough for me I still watch just to keep my family on the cutting edge of the Apocolyspe Hollywood Training. Thank the heavens for Zombie Land…Peace Out…BUY 22 AMMO Kills the Same & is only .03 cents a shot!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  31. Jonathan

    The show is dumb most of the scenarios are unrealistic. Who the hell procrastinates in a farm land with barely any zombies in 3-5 days, I would built wooden stakes around the perimeter cause the zombies are dumb and walk into them, the great thing is you can reuse them. Digging trenches takes too much labor so I say wooden stakes at the mass would be your best bet. Also make wooden spears and stab them in the head, they don’t really run, save your ammo when your really to need to use it. Aahaha the main character thought he can establish a life in the farm with no defenses lol, farm is a good place cause of food though. They cold of carved holes in the barn doors, so they can poke the zombies as well, they should of made hay stacks put lil fuel and burn them and toss them at a giant horde ahhaha wow, they could of got rocks place them at the top of the farm place and lodge the rocks at the zombies ahaha. It’s a good show but retarded survival skills are showed in the show. Wasting gas to find people is the worse thing you can do. It’s like every character is a dumb ass, except some are less of a dumb ass ahhahaah =D. Wooden stakes would own these dumb zombies, lol imagine being able to reuse them as the zombies are stuck, what if u had per say 500 in a month, that would mean 500 zombies off your leash, plus killing zombies everyday is needed too, lower the numbers unless you see a big horde.


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