Thursday, January 8, 2009

I Dream Of A Zombie Apocalypse

As those reading this blog already know, I'm fixated on end-of-the-world scenarios. Be they in book form, games, or movies -- I just can't get enough. Particularly if zombies or some other form of undead are involved (mutants? vampires? mutant vampire zombies?). I don't know what it is, but there's something about vast, trashed landscapes littered with shambling hordes of festering boogie men that just thrills me to no end.

And I'm left wondering: what does that says about me? :)

It's interesting, given that this fixation didn't really begin until I played the original Resident Evil game on the PlayStation back in 1998. Before then, I actually hated zombie fiction. Especially the old Living Dead movies. Zombies were always too silly to me, and those types of movies way boring. But with Resident Evil, the game actually made me fear for my life as I tried to blast my way through too-narrow zombie-infested halls and labs in my search for an escape route out of some old, scary mansion.

And while I would never *really* want to be in such a scenario in real life, the thrill was there nonetheless. When it really hit me bad was when I played the sequel a few months later. This time, the zombie infection had spread to the nearby metropolis, and now there were a hundred thousand zombies (and worse!) roaming the streets in search of fresh meat. The big city setting of RE2 really cut close to home seeing as I live in NYC. So naturally I found myself wondering what it would be like if I was one of the last people alive in a New York gone to the undead. What would I do? How would I escape?

Yeah, I'm a strange guy. What can I say?

Anyway, all this is just my roundabout way of bringing up that I saw Resident Evil: Degeneration last night on DVD. It's a CGI animated flick based on the games and *NOT* the live-action shit starring Mila Jovovich that has been mucking up movie screens for the past few years.

RE: Degeneration takes place chronologically after the RE3 and RE: Code Veronica games, but just before RE4. It reunites two of the main characters from RE2, which is considered by most old-time fans as the best RE game ever! Which it is.

The movie was highly entertaining, mostly because I got to revisit old friends from my past (so it seemed), but also because it brings back zombies into the RE consciousness again -- rather than the super-speedy, disturbingly lucid and intelligent "neo zombies" of the more recent games like RE4. No, the zombies in this movie are the classic slow-moving, gang-up-in-hordes creatures of old. And I loved every minute of it!

This isn't a movie for a newcomer or even a casual fan of the series to enjoy. There's a lot of innuendo and connections to the video game series as a whole, and only someone deeply immersed in the collective plotline can truly enjoy the quirks of the script. It's classic Resident Evil when seen through the lens of the video games.

To everyone else, however, it just seems like a shoddy, unintelligible B-grade animated. Which is sad. I mean, I can see why this movie would suck for anyone else, honestly. But ultimately I don't care. It satisfied my zombie apocalyptic needs, and that's all that matters.

I'm hoping I get to continue on this fix when I eventually delve into Fallout 3 for the Xbox 360, which promises to be drowning in all that apocalyptic goodness that I love so much. It's a game which I've already talked about here, but which is way too huge for me to begin until I'm properly ready (which should hopefully be the end of the month).

Until then, have fun in the apocalypse! I know I will . . .


  1. I was watching Night of the Living Dead before you were probably born ;)

    I have always been into vampire/zombie books/movies, not video games though. So, when you figure out what it means about you, can you tell me too?

    I'm looking forward to Underworlds next release on January 23rd Rise of the Lycans . . .

  2. You know I can't stand zombies! But Veronica would have loved this. She was so weird 'cause she loved RE but she would make me play it for her. She couldn't take the suspense of a zombie jumping out at her and still play properly and it was an exercise in intense concentration for me. RE was a subject of contention and bonding simultaneously for us. I guess we were both weird!

  3. Kim, I was born in 1976 so it looks Night of the Living Dead had already been out for about 8 years. I myself saw it when I was very young, around 7 or 8 I think. I remember thinking: why don't the people just hop in a car and drive off? The scary monsters are so SLOW!!! :)

    Tarrell, yeah I remember being surprised when you told me you and Veronica were playing the game. I was kinda hoping you would continue the series, though, especially considering the next game after it is the best of the franchise!

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