Anyone who knows me knows I’m a big fan of “The Walking Dead”.
Actually, I’m fascinated by zombies and the zombie apocalypse. It’s one of my lifetime ambitions to gain a PhD in “Zombie Apocalypse”.
Let me explain: I’m not at all interested in “zombies”, more about the psychological, anthropological and sociological (hey, and any other “-ological” you care to think of) fascination with them and the apocalypse in general. Let’s face it, I’m wasted in computers, I should have listened to Mrs Beattie and got myself an “-ology”. (Link for young people here: You got an ology! *shakes head at young people and having to explain classic “you got an ology” reference*)
Anyway, “The Walking Dead” is back this month so it’s taking over my waking thinking hours. And I’ve been thinking about Negan (the very very worst baddie of the show for those non-watchers). The last half of this series was about him and his life. The second half is going to be about our goodies standing up to him and (hopefully) defeating him, because, you know, good always wins. (Of course last series was questioning whether our guys were the goodies at all, but that’s another story).
Negan (the baddie, keep up) believes he is the answer to society in the new world.
He is trying to make the world great again (with him at the helm obviously). He keeps telling our side that he’s a good guy once you follow his rules. His rules of course involve putting his community first, last and only. But if you play by his rules, he does what he says he’s going to do. Which so far, has been true. What he’s done has been very very bad, but he did say he was going to do them. He did set out his rules at the very beginning. His rules are pretty unfair: all women He wants are his wives and you mustn’t have any of them, half of everything is his and if you hide anything He’ll come and take it (and more) anyway and if you don’t like what He says he’ll kill you or someone who means something to you. Of course, his rules are open to his own interpretation, if you might be useful (even if you disobey the rules) then it’s “Easy Street” for you.
Anyway, that’s Negan.
So far this series we’ve also met two new communities. One tried to defy Negan so he killed all their menfolk. They then ran away and hid and have had to become self sufficient, killing anyone and everyone who finds their location; making any sort of trade agreement or inter-community friendships impossible.
The other, have played by Negan’s rules from the start, duly turning over half their produce at the contracted times and locations. All their menfolk are alive and well and (if trailers are to be believed) will be the key to our guys destroying Negan and let’s hope (although it’s TV, there’ll have to be some more drama around the corner) living full lives.
This series we’ve seen a bit about what it’s like to live in Negan’s community. Not many people are happy but they’re surviving. When the apolocapse came and people feared for their lives, not knowing how to get by in the new world, I bet it was refreshing to have someone come along and say he’d look after them, that he’d build a wall to keep the bad guys out (even if that meant turning away some good guys in the process: but he’ll win them over later), that he’d make rules and keep them, that he’d do what he said he would, that he’d make difficult decisions on their behalf, that he wouldn’t waste resources on those that couldn’t be useful and that he’d take everything they needed, no matter the consequences to others. After years of Politicians, I bet it made them feel safe. (We know from “Fear the Walking Dead”, after the apocalypse starts, our current way of life bearly lasts an episode).
A series or two ago, our heroes were welcomed into the town of ‘Alexandria’. Many of the townsfolk were scared: who are these immigrants coming in and taking our food and resources? They made the residents feel less safe. Some bad things have happened in Alexandria since our heroes have arrived and the locals have blamed the immigrants: who wouldn’t? Everything was fine until they came. Of course Rick (yay British actor playing the hero with an American accent) has fixed many problems they didn’t know they had, has done things they didn’t know they needed to do and has become the leader they didn’t know they needed and is just about to lead them into victory against Negan. But you can’t blame people for being scared of change. The last change was apocalyptic!
Our guys (led by a British Actor even the locals think is American) started the series following Negan’s rules. But Negan found our community too entertaining, too interesting and too much fun to stay away from. So his rules got stricter and he kept asking for more. He couldn’t stay away. He wanted more. He’d never been denied before so the challenge excited him. He sent deputies to other communities but visited our village in person. Some tried to keep him away, but he came anyway. In the series finale our man (yay Andrew Lincoln” he’s British don’t you know!) has had an epiphany: Negan won’t stop taking until he’s stopped. BUT having taken his time to come to that decision, his son still has his hand, most of our Good Guys are still alive and Negan is resting on his laurels and will be off guard when Rick and King Ezekiel come for him, which will ultimately be his undoing.
Much better than Oceanside who stood up to Negan straight away and lost.
PS this is an analogy. I couldn’t possibly tell you what it’s really about because, you know, everyone is Negan and there are spies everywhere ….
PPS anyone want to fund my Zombie Apocalypse PhD?