27.2.15

BURT MALONE LETTERS: Zombies All Over the Small Screen.

He’s already once expressed his love for the wildly popular “The Walking Dead”, while simultaneously hating on how popular zombies have become.  It was only a matter of time before he started checking out some of the other shows that have popped up in the wake of the AMC show's success.

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Well hello again, good sir.

I’ve been kind of going crazy with the binge watching of late, and I stumbled upon a couple of real gems. And some turds, obviously.

I started up with the somewhat slowly paced “The Returned”, a French show based on the film “They Came Back”, or “Les Revenants”.

The show starts slow, and keeps that pace mostly throughout the eight episodes that I watched.  Much like the film, it has a very serious tone, is totally weird and confusing, and at the same time, kind of scares the BAJEBUS out of me.

Unlike the film, the show starts off focused on a bus load of children that flew off a cliff suddenly coming back a year later as if nothing happened.

AND THE PARENTS FLIP THE FUCK OUT.

It’s eerie, it’s cool, and Mogwai did the soundtrack.  And Mogwai kicks fucking ass and helps create mega tension.

Like in the film, the undead essentially try to resume their lives, unaware, seemingly, that they died.  But there’s all sorts of mysterious shit going on and we are trying to figure out what the deal is.  Super cool.  I can’t wait to see the second season.  Good, and complicated, characters.  Great dialogue and acting.  More television needs to be like this.

Which brings me to the somewhat unnecessary American version of “Les Revenants” called “Resurrection”.  I can’t say it’s bad, actually.  At least it’s SORT OF doing its own thing.  It’s not like when “Quarantine” came out as a nearly identical, but just in English, version of “REC”.  I haven’t seen enough of it to really pass any judgment.  It got picked up for a second season, which doesn’t NECESSARILY mean anything, but it does mean they got to develop the story further.  Which is always a good thing.  Not sure if the third season is coming or not.

Next up, in an attempt to liven things up, I went for the tragically short-lived MTV show “Death Valley”.

I can see why this show didn’t make it on a network aimed at people who watch shows about teen moms, people falling on their testicles, and other such dumb shit.  Most MTV shows that aren’t reality TV are on par, creatively speaking, with most Disney Channel shows.

Death Valley” was gory, ACTUALLY FUNNY, and in a way, fairly original.  Which makes it a strange offering for MTV.  Shot mockumentary style, and following a police department in charge of taking care of werewolves, zombies and vampires, I found myself digging the characters immediately.   Well-paced, well written, and a lot of fun… obviously, it was cancelled after one season.  Had the show been on a network like FX, or even something like Showtime, AMC or HBO, the series’ fate might have been radically different.

Which brings me to the VIOLENTLY unfunny, unoriginal and unnecessary ScyFy Channel original, “Z Nation”.  It’s a production from “The Asylum”, so honestly, I don’t even need to watch a single episode to know that it is a complete piece of shit - a lame mockbuster cash grab attempt to ride the zombie wave.  But, I felt I should watch at least one episode.  All of my suspicions were more than correct.  In short, the show should be called “ZZZZZzzzzzz Nation”.  Because it’s boring.  So boring.

And yet, I could totally see it going on for a couple of years.  Because somehow shit like this gets watched.  Somewhere out there are idiots thinking "man, can't wait for the new season of Z Nation".  And then they take a selfie and talk about how good "The Big Bang Theory" is.  Brutal.

Next up on my marathon of binge watching was a BBC show called “In the Flesh”.

HOLY SHIT.  The zombie apocalypse is over, and the government are rehabilitating the “used to be” zombies of the world.  The doctors call the formerly dead “partially deceased syndrome sufferer”.  It’s not that no one has tackled the idea of “what if the zombies stopped being zombies” or “what if there WAS a cure”, but in a way, kind of nobody has.  At least not with the serious tone of this show.  Within five minutes I can tell that I am not going to want to stop watching this one.

Way recommeneded.  I’m glad I watched this afterZ Nation” because, quite honestly, I thought nothing would ever clean my brain of that depressingly bad show.

After all of this, and ending on a zombie show high note, I decided to take it up another notch and settle nicely into binge watching a ‘not actually a zombie show, but it has zombies in it, technically’, known as “Game Of Thrones”, anxiously looking forward to any scene with the ‘White Walkers’, who are, basically, MEDIEVAL ZOMBIES FUCK YEAH.

And there are dragons.

Also, all of the wonderful female nudity is pretty nice.

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He can complain all he wants about the zombie’s surge in popularity, but from the sound of it, even he agrees that it has lead to some rather good television… definitely more interesting than all the vampire crap out there in the wake of “Twilight”.  Except "Z Nation" which sounds worse than it sounds.  Anyways, here’s hoping that it takes at least a couple more years before we get a zombie sitcom starring Zooey Deschanel or some shit.

WHO’S THAT ZOMBIEeeeeEeeeeeee…

Ugh.

4 comments:

  1. Great to see both you, and Burt Malone back!

    Wow, Z Nation sure has divided opinions! Some people hate it, while others love it. I can't wait to see for myself, and find out what I think.

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    1. It's honestly not the worst thing on television - not by a long shot. But I just felt like it wasn't over the top and cheesy enough to work on a so bad its good level, but also not serious enough to work on a Walking Dead sort of level. Pure mediocrity.

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    2. Also, thanks! Been dealing with a crazy winter and having a new baby.

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  2. Don't even say zombie sitcom outloud. I fear this idea will spread like wildfire if it crosses paths with a network executive. On the plus side, winter is coming again in less than a month!

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