Monday, May 18, 2015
Blood, Boobs, and Carnage Blogfest
Howdy, ya'll. Today's bloodfest is hosted by Ninja Captain Alex Cavanaugh, author of Dragon of the Stars and the Cassa Trilogy, and Gnome Master Heather Gardner, author of One Good Catch and Already Home.
Few stories feature more blood and carnage than a zombie apocalypse. Boobs? Well, zombies give a whole other take on breastfeeding, I suppose. (Insert evil chuckle here.) Today I'm focussing on the episode Pretty Much Dead Already in the television series The Walking Dead, because not only did the flesh fly, but there was a moment of horrifying emotional carnage as well. Talk about brilliant writing!
Season 2 finds the band of survivors led by Rick Grimes out on the road, fleeing from the camp where they first met during the outbreak. Right off the bat, one of the children, Sophia, gets separated from the group and lost in the woods during a zombie encounter. Several episodes are spent looking for the girl even though the odds aren't so hot. Few humans are around to help a missing kid and hoards of zombies are hungry to eat her alive.
The group settles by the farm of Hershel Walker, retired veterinarian, to keep up the search and to save the life of another kid in the group, Carl, when he is accidentally shot. It turns out that Hershel's not too crazy about letting other survivors join what's left of his family. He's got a big, ugly secret: he's been keeping his dead, but still lively, family members and neighbors locked up in his barn where he feeds them live chickens. Poor Hershel is in serious denial that these moaning corpses can be cured of what ails 'em.
Of course, the secret gets out and one of the hotheads in Rick's group decides to do away with the barn monsters. As a viewer, I was on his side. Yes, shoot those disgusting zombies. I don't care if it's Hershel's wife, she's the grossest one. She's dead! Shoot her quick, before she can rip off her surviving daughter's head! BAM! BAM! BAM! Yeah! All those deadly (and dead) zombies are toast. High fives, right?
Well, guess what? After all those zombies, whose characters we never knew as live people, are dispatched, one last zombie shuffles out the of the dark barn into the light. The camera shows the feet first: small, unlaced sneakers, torn capris. It's Sophia. The whole time Rick's group was searching, she was in the barn, already dead.
Image courtesy: caliopedreams
It's heartbreaking, especially the mother's reaction. She knew Sophia was probably dead the whole time, but still, she had hope. And that kind of makes sense, because Carl survived a gunshot wound to the chest, so why not a Hail Mary save for Sophia too? No dice.
Then Sophia's mother has to hear the bullet that ends her child's undead existence. That's emotional carnage, my friends. I haven't felt such a kick to the gut since the opening scene in Sty Stallone's Cliffhanger, when the hiker, dangling from a steel cable, slips out of her glove, and you know the last minute (or minutes) of her life will be spent plunging to her death. That still gives me the shivers.
What show or movie has kicked you in the gut? If you're a Walking Dead fan, do you have a favorite episode?