Posts Tagged ‘zombies’

This winter I will be spending the majority of my waking hours staring down a microscope trying to identify sand grains. This is not a joke. It takes a lot of brain power to make a decision about what I’m looking at. This is my data, after all. I have to make a lot of judgement calls, especially when it comes to identifying rock fragments (yes, sand grains are often rock fragments, and it is difficult to distinguish between volcanic, metamorphic, and sedimentary, but that’s a story for a different day). But, it is very easy to multitask, like listen to music while I do this.

Sometimes music is great, and it’s exactly what you need to get the job done. But when you’re doing the same thing for many days in a row your brain wants to mix it up. This is cutting way into my winter reading time, so I’ve found a clever solution: podcasts (because audiobooks are expensive and I haven’t taken the time to set up my library account here). But I’m not talking about talk show type podcasts. Those are good, but what I really like are the story-type shows, like Welcome to Night Vale

… and We’re Alive, the zombie podcast.

“We’re Alive” is about a zombie apocalypse and follows a group of survivors as they try to stay alive in this new zombie-infested, everyone-fends-for-themselves world. I am totally addicted. It’s the best thing to listen to while I’m identifying my sand grains. One might argue that it’s not that different from any other zombie apocalypse story, and that may be true. You have your protagonists and antagonists, and the goal is really just to survive. But I love zombie apocalypse stories, so I don’t care.

Plus, the characters are pretty great. They are all well-developed, we learn their backstories very slowly, but everyone is really evolving through this crisis together, and it’s like their old lives don’t matter anymore. There’s great diversity of both ethnicity and gender, which makes the whole story seem that much more realistic. Every character is played by a different actor, and it’s really easy to follow who’s talking.

The zombies themselves are a little different too. There are several different types, some of whom might actually be somewhat intelligent, and the complexities of these zombies unfolds as the characters witness their different characteristics. It’s almost like we’re there with them, silent background characters. So far we haven’t found “ground zero” or who might have started the whole mess (though I am only at the end of season 2, and there are 2 more seasons to listen to). It’s well-written, and there’s enough action in each episode to keep me hanging on.

If you’re looking for something new to listen to, and audiobooks are out of your reach, I highly recommend We’re Alive.

If you know of any other good story-type podcasts, please leave recommendations in the comments! I’ve heard about Serial, so that’s next on my list, but I would love to hear more podcasts like this one!

Read Full Post »

I’ve just finished a long day of organizing 267 rock samples into boxes today, and so have decided that this week’s blog post will be my drunken review of a random, and probably terrible, movie. Tonight, I have chosen “The Returned” as my victim. It wins because not only is it a futuristic zombie movie, but it co-stars Kris Holden-Ried, my future celebrity husband. It’s possible this review could devolve into reminiscing about the brief moment I met him.


Yup. He is tall and I am short, and he said it was nice to meet me. I was smitten because the previous day he’d told us at his panel interview that if he could be any supernatural creature he would be a vampire so he could be immortal. We’re soulmates, ok? Leave me alone.

I am literally only half a glass in and I’ve already gone on a tangent. Oops.

But seriously, I love zombie movies. So does my roommate, so I feel a little bad about watching this without her (especially since she watches Lost Girl, for which Kris Holden-Ried is famous), but probably this is the kind of movie I would watch multiple times, no matter how bad it ends up being.

Before I begin this movie, I’d like to point out that the top 3 movies Netflix says are like it are called “Zombie Massacre,” “Hell,” and “Devil’s Knot.” The internet is being weird so I can’t see what the photo on the cover is, but those are great titles.


So much blood and death and creepy footage during the credits. Off to a good start.

Ah, so they’re going with that whole, main character had a tragic past and watched her parents get eaten by the zombies thing. Bummer. Now seems like a good time to mention that in this future, there’s an antidote to zombie-ism. There’s just not enough for everyone. Our heroine appears to be a doctor, and Holden-Ried is the adorable boyfriend? Husband? I dunno… he still looks like a werewolf to me.

Why do we care about the security guard’s haircut?

Oh snap, The Returned are the discriminated group of the future! There are protesters outside the hospital, but I still have no idea what they’re protesting. Can I have some plot please? Where are all the zombies?? All I see are ex-zombies! I DEMAND ZOMBIES NOW.

HEY IT’S A LOST GIRL REUNION PARTY!! Dyson and the evil guy from season 3. Yeaaaaaah

The novel pitch this woman just gave is… absurd… and somehow it’s a segue into THE BIG SECRET REVEAL which is actually really freaking obvious given the circumstances. Note to self: always be prepared for zombies. NO NO NO don’t ring the damn bell!! Zombies are attracted by noise! EVERYONE KNOWS THAT.

That was supposed to be an epic bomb drop. But… he’s on the cover image for the movie as half-zombie, so… not surprised. Bummer Dyson, er… whatever your name is in this. Secretly I want to see him become a zombie anyway.

Hehe this is a Canadian zombie movie.

Ok, so, the whole premise of this movie is that they are running out of the zombie antidote. Because of a lack of funding, or a cutback in funding. Um. Shouldn’t anti-zombie funding be everyone’s #1 priority? I mean seriously… even the Pentagon has a plan for a zombie outbreak. According to this movie, the person needs to get the first shot of the antidote within 36 hours. Money should be pouring in to mass produce this shit. But instead they are discriminating against the Returned. The assholes of the world would rather just have them killed or segregated than spend money to try to cure them/keep them supplied with meds. I sense a parallel to something like HIV/AIDS research, but that could be the wine talking, because I actually know nothing about HIV/AIDS research… Whoa… this just got really political. I’m actually enjoying the buildup of the plot now. This movie might not be as terrible as I anticipated.

Oh daaaaamn a big red “RETURNED” note gets slapped on your ID if you get diagnosed with zombie-ism and survive. This movie is really depressing.

Well, this is different… the scary thing isn’t the zombies, but the returned-haters. This is awfully depressing for a zombie movie. What the hell, Canada?

Ooooo fucksocks.

Aww they are still bros, and it’s beautiful.

They just had a bonding moment about counting the vials of zombie-antidote. Adorable.

DID SHE JUST SAY “FRAKKING”???? NERD. Oh wait, I do that all the time…

“That’s kind of spooky.” Ok, you’re watching ye old Dracula, but I’m hearing weird thumping noises around my house and I’m home alone. THAT is spooky.

Seriously, what are those noises?

Hey look, that guy’s from “Bitten”! Canada, do you have more than 15 actors? I am growing concerned. I mean, they’re good. But… don’t you have more of them?

I’m sorry Canada, I promise I really love you, and I only jest in a loving way.


Ok… what… what just happened….  NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! I was not expecting this movie to be so good NOOOOOOOO everything is terrible. The depression continues and everything sucks.

This movie is not about zombies. It’s about really shitty friends and horrible illnesses. This might be the wine talking. You should watch this movie. And yell at it.

This is going to go very, very wrong, I can already tell. Never has a zombie movie been this depressing.

Would I run someone over just to get the zombie-antidote they stole from me because I loved someone who was infected? Maybe. Maybe not. Wow this movie is intense.

I am seriously nearly in tears over this movie. What the hell. It’s about ZOMBIES. Canada, go home, you are drunk, and doing this wrong. Oh wait… maybe I am the drunk one.


Those characters should die. Horrible deaths. Gods damn, Canada, only you could make a zombie movie this tragic.

I need a hug.

No one is here, so I’ll just watch an episode of X-Files to feel better about life. Somehow this works. It’s, um, research for Halloween?

Read Full Post »