Spoiler Alert for The Walking Dead
As I explained in this post about morality in fictional universes, many entrants to the post-apocalypse genre of story telling express anti-human morals. I don’t fuck with that. I said there,
I cannot watch these shows anymore (TWD and FtWD), as compelling as the perpetual danger and lovely actors may be. I just started watching them in early spring 2015 and quit fall of the same year. It took an embarrassingly long time to do so, but I figured out what was bothering me about them. Both shows have the exact same moral, playing out the exact same way, over and over and over again.
If it was a moral I agreed with, that might not be a problem. But I disagree with it powerfully. It’s the underpinning of so much of what’s wrong with America – trust no one, everyone’s trying to get over, fuck them before they fuck you. Some of you might disagree that’s what they’re communicating, but it really is.
The show, just like America itself, makes exceptions for those close to you, based on closeness. Trust no one (except your family), and so on. On the show it’s the people you know the best – your enclave / faction / posse, whatever – that can be trusted, and everyone else is wrong, dangerous, deluded, or even a cannibal. IRL America, it’s your family first, and everyone else is trying to steal your tax dollars or make your children gay or whatever. And if you must stand in solidarity with someone outside your doors, it’s your race or gender first, everyone else is out to take your jobs, or trick or rob you, or terrorism on you, or try to reverse the situation so that white menz become the most oppressed group evarrrrr.
This plays out in our economy as a situation of total desperation, just a gigantic pile of everyone screwing everyone, the Hobbesian war of all against all. It hurts us emotionally and physically. It’s felt the most by poor people, but can be seen clearly at every level of our society if you know what you’re looking at. It really doesn’t have to be this way; it’s just the same overwhelming fear of the Other that drives the plots of Walking Dead shows along their inexorable crappy path.
…The show is just too bitterly misanthropic… Basically, any generosity toward humans outside of your immediate tribal unit is punished by painful horrible death, because people can never be trustedddddd. The writer is no doubt a rethuglican gun fondling jingoist piece of trash.
And yeah, now the entire Asian-American population of the southeast USA is extinct, so, bleeahhh. Fuck those writers right in their filthy conservative necks. Their brand of edgy “moral courage” is the kind of banal evil that passes for virtue in mainstream amurrica and I’m so tired of it. I’m gonna sleep on the show now (& its spinoff), and kindly advise all good people to do the same.
Now that Glenn has actually met the fate he suffered in the comic books (killed by yet another white “alpha” male – apparently the most naturally dominant form of human life in lieu of law), that post is once again completely accurate. I don’t know though, I’m not actually watching the show. Any other Asian characters in sight?
I feel like I had something to add to this thesis but it eludes me. Just, right now, on the eve of Trump’s more-narrow-than-it-should-be defeat, this worldview has a louder mouthpiece than usual. The place I work for sells fascist propaganda from convicted election fraudster Dinesh D’Souza and others. Ideas that belong on the outer fringe of human thought are packaged by billionaire-funded haters and sold through mass market outlets.
But the excesses of contemporary right wingers are just tapping into something that’s already there – the rotten core of the american dream. All I have left for this subject is exhaustion. G’night.