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THE WALKING DEAD:DIFFICULT DEAD…

This very gory splatter filled horror TV series has been on air for a round two years now, with the second series soon ending in the UK. I have to admit that I have not really paid too much interest in the second series so far, as I think that I’ve lost some interest. Now, I do really want to like show with very impressive full-on CG gore, high drama and big scares with classic horror monsters on our screens. This is zombies though, who along with vampires have really reached overload, with zombie themed books, films, comics, games, all over everywhere we look. Does this mean that we’ve become desensitised to their terror now? Are they just boring, when we see them every day, in all directions and forms of entertainment?

I do wish to like this series still, and I want to support high quality genre television which is continuing strongly in most forms. So why have I lost interest with the dead ones? Well, even with the first series it was to some degree, not completely fresh or original but a new experience for television I think. The budget and production values were surprisingly good, and suggested fine things ahead. I came to it late, but then managed to catch it all very quickly on repeat.

Again, like some other genre shows now, some of them are almost blurring into one another, with desperate groups of people evading some terrifying gangs of either zombies, werewolves, vampires or something similar to that. They owe much to the storylines of shows previously such as LOST or HEROES, though not always but with so many genre shows appearing over the last half decade or so with increasing regularity now many are emulating others, showing signs of familiarity

THE WALKING DEAD is actually originally adapted from a fine successful comic book series, written by Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore, Charlie Adlard.  I do think that I probably would enjoy a lot and stick with if I began reading it. So I am wondering about the differences between horror in graphic novel/comic book form and horror on the screen in series form-is one better or more successful than the other? Why is that?

Comic readers might have different attitudes or interests than more relaxed television viewers which could mean that the comic version might have different storylines, structure that just might not adapt well to television, but then the TV series can probably display better certain levels of extreme dramatic horror scenes that the comic could only begin to suggest.

I hope it is still doing well, and a third series seem to be appearing too, along with a videogame. It’s the undead, they just keep coming back for you…

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About JAMES E PARSONS

Author of science fiction novels Orbital Kin and Minerva Century-also horror, literary fiction, many short stories and screenplays. Always reading, writing, watching films, playing guitar/bass, and am a husband with a coffee addiction. New horror novel due for 2017. This is my blog, offshoot from my website. It will be where I post current thoughts, opinions, views, reviews, or discussions about contemporary film, movies, books, video games, television series mostly in the horror, science fiction, fantasy and their sub-genre offshoots. The entertainment not in the mainstream (for the most part) and proud of it. Also follow me on twitter- @ParsonsFiction, and facebook - James E Parsons

4 responses to “THE WALKING DEAD:DIFFICULT DEAD…

  1. nzumel ⋅

    I read the first few trade paperbacks of Walking Dead comic before losing interest. This is probably more about me than the series; I’m a short story reader by preference, and I like the stories to eventually end… Ongoing series sometimes live well past the time when their themes seem fresh, and new.

    I’ve always thought that comics had a lot of cinematic elements to them when done well, so perhaps which you prefer depends on whether you like having the time to savor and linger over the words and images, or if you like to be immersed in them real time. Both are good.

    • Hello, yes fine points there. I agree about often longer series losing the initial strength they start with sometimes. I too am a great fan of many kinds of short fiction, and write it myself also. You are often going to get a short, sharp great concept or situation in a short tale, but with longer books or television series or comic series, the quality will go up and down over time.
      Yes, comics and graphic novels do these days have very cinematic qualities visually, and often even film and cinema take strong visual influence from comics. Since around the eighties with FRANK MILLER’s DARK KNIGHT RETURNS, and ALAN MOORE’S WATCHMEN and V for VENDETTA to only name a couple, comics have taken cinematic editing cues to build drama and suspense.
      I still might try the comic version of WALKING DEAD sometime to get a comparison. Thanks for your thoughts.

  2. I just wanted to point out that there is little CG in this show, most FX are done with traditional make-up and latex, and if you look into it, quite often they use ‘real meat’ for the gore scenes – (chicken gizzards, beef cuts, etc.). I think the hard working FX team would have issue with calling their effects, CG. A scene with 80 zombies in it has eighty people in make-up fx. Info can be found on AMC.com and on the show ‘the Talking Dead’ where quite often, they go into detail about the effects processes they use for each scene.

    Most Walking Dead, Graphic Novel/comic readers will tell you that the show mostly holds true to the comics, although there are some deviations. But the peeps that have read the books seem to like the changes, (ex. the character Darryl should have died already but fans liked his character so much, they are keeping him alive.) And lastly, the Walking Dead comic was out before Lost or Heroes, and most horror fans never watched those shows anyway, I know I didn’t.

    • Thanks for putting me right there. I now remember I think seeing behind the scenes images in a magazine and information. You are right, the very hard working FX teams rightly deserve good credit and praise. I hope viewers know more about their work. Yes, you’re right about the comic too, I think I was thinking more about influence of series on television. Thanks very much

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