Friday, May 2, 2008

Southpark’s fiction

This is an inspiration. So far, I like his stuff. I don’t know if he is on track for a full novella, or where he is gonna go plot-drama-wise. His characters are competent and prepared, even for a zombie eventuality, for the most part. More so than regular civilians, though not as much as a hard core survivalist is. Pretty close. He alludes that they might not be as ready as they figured.

There are 2 extremes in types of zombie apocalypse fiction. One, where the protagonist is VERY prepared, and has only a few hiccups in defending his ‘castle.’ This is more fantacist escapism fiction. Enjoyable, but there is less chance for the main plot point. There is no struggle, only triumph. It can be enjoyable to read, anyway. And it is a good preparatory on how to do things ‘right.’ Unless you emulate the successful techniques forgetting that no battle plan survives first contact with the enemy. There is all the stuff you DIDN’T consider, that you get in trouble. But the fiction of this type rarely address that. It is good for what it is. It is not fine literature, zombie hypothetical or not.

There is the second type of zombie fiction, that you see in the movies. The protagonist is totally UNPREPARED and fights to survive. There is plot galore in this route. Nurse wakes up, and husband gets bit, turns into a zombie… FLEE! Cops are opposing the growing zombie horde when it is small and seems manageable. When it becomes apparent that nothing is stopping the horror, he goes from restorer of order to FLEE! Worry about order later! Survive now. Improvise as you go. These characters’ only prep is ad hoc and the life skills they already possess and a will to live. These make for good stories, but are poor for preparation instruction regarding the VERY REAL ZOMBIE THREAT! Other than the improvisational ideas. Better literature.

People are starting to write in the in-between, combining both. SouthParkPundit is leaning Prepare-For, I think, but still has some good plot hook potential. Plus he writes well. If I were to write, with my meager skills, something similar, I’d drift toward the Unprepared-For side. A protagonist that has only partly considered preparations for a Necropalypse.

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