One EOTWAWKI series down (“Jericho”), one to go. The latest offering being readied for the masses is ‘K-Ville’. A series about police during/after Hurricane Katrina. Now, lets think about that for a minute. I have read almost nothing positive about the police, native or imported, during the aftermath of Katrina. We’ve all seen the footage of them dogpiling some little old lady to take her pistol away from her….we want a series about these people? Im betting Nagin and the othe New Orleans politicos are pushing hard for this one to a) take some heat off them and b) rewrite history. Still…I’ll probably watch it until the pro-cop message gets to be too much.
Speaking of fiction, I would be terribly neglectful if I did not mention that ‘I Am Legend’ is coming up later this year. You saw it when it was called “The Omega Man” and maybe even before that when it was called “The Last Man On Earth” (starring the terribly underappreciated and very interesting Vincent price). The premise is like many zombie flicks – everyone else is infected with a disease that makes them dangerous except for a few solitary surviviors fighting off the hordes. In this case the danger isn’t flesheating undead but rather a form of vampirism (largely ignored in TLMOE but played at a slightly different angle in TOM). Its worth noting that TLMOE was more faithful to the book (titled “I Am Legend”) with its less-than-happy ending. TOM was slightly more upbeat but was full of insanely pointless Christ imagery. (You can find FAQ’s about all that somewhere, Im sure.)
Ive seen some production stills from the new IAL movie and it looks interesting…Will Smith wandering deserted streets with an M4 hanging off his shoulder, that sort of thing.
In a (very) slightly related vein, the new Resident Evil movie is also forthcoming with a slight Mad Max flavor to it. I need no excuse to watch Milla Jovovich running around killing things. If the apocalyptic wastelands are going to have babes like her running around I will personally push the button that starts World War III.
As I think about it, there hasn’t been a lot of apocalyptic themed entertainment since the end of the Cold War. In fact, I will suggest that the recent resurgence of zombie movies is a direct result. Without the Cold War we cant have an apocalypse from Russian nukes so we replace bayonet-thrusting Russian troops with flesh-eating undead.
Lets see, I think the last really good movie along these lines was probably Red Dawn (anyone here not have a copy of this???) and that was 20 years ago.
There have been a few movies that were probably more ‘realistic’ and were, in my opinion, designed as a scare tactic for nuclear disarmament. The foremost would be the hyper-depressing ‘Threads’…a movie so depressing and fatalistic that, as I understand it, it was shelved for a number of years in the UK. (Its premise was based on war games projecting the outcome and aftermath of a large nuclear exchange). ‘The Day After’ was a fatalistic US movie on the aftermath of a nukefest. One scene that stands out in my memory is the kid breaking into someones house to steal an empty jar of peanut butter so he could try to scrape the remaining bits of PB out of it…I cant recall but I believe the homeowner killed him over it. Heady stuff.
The premise of life after an apocalyptic event is full of potential for storylines and arcs that should keep a series from getting stale. I thought ‘Jericho’ was doing fairly well in that regard. I’d read people saying that there was too much drama and interpersonal storylines. But, that’s life….it isn’t going to be running gun battles against looters all the time youre still going to have to deal with people and how they react to things.
One more mention of a book – “Among Madmen” was a pulp novel that I found in a used bookstore. The premise is very similar to ’28 Days’. People spontaneously become rage-fuelled killing machines with no warning. Society grinds to a halt and everyone hunkers down as people guard against their neighbors or outsiders suddenly going berserk and killing everyone they can. The story is told from the perspective of a police chief in a small upstate NY town who has to try and keep his town safe from the berserkers and from the usual post-apocalyptic cast of bad guys.
Onto other matters……..
Group Buy on the #10 cans of Mountain House ends in a week. This’ll be the only order with MH for 2007 so if youre in hurricane country or otherwise living in an area with an elevated risk you may wanna hop on the train before it leaves the station. Also, if you don’t want the #10’s, I also have the ProPack pouches on hand for immediate delivery…theyre very nice for tucking into backpacks, buckets and truckboxes.
Minor the other day. Was at the shop minding my own business when I heard a loud noise from outside coupled with a bright flash of light. Transformer in the alley blew up. Power was knocked out to most of the block except my shop (long story but my shop is wired to a different power pole than everyone else on the block). Makes no difference to me, but it made a difference to my neighbors who have a cabinet manufacturing facility in what used to be an underground garage. A garage with one stairwell in, no windows and no emergency lighting. I always have a big MagLite here at the shop so I grabbed that and my Bag O’ Tricks and headed next door to see if they needed help. Went downstairs and there were only a few people there but they needed to turn off the saws and planers for when the power came on and the only flashlight available was a remarkably cheesey 12v worklight with a 90% dead battery. Passed out a few lightsticks from my bag, retrieved my Streamlight LED from the main pocket of my bag and handed it to the gal in charge, and went with them to provide illumination so they could turn off the machines. Since these people are also my landlord my being prepared pays off in lots of goodwill dividends. Power company had the transformer fixed an hour later. I returned to the bunker to replenish my supply of lightsticks and pat myself on the back. Moral of the story? Be prepared.
Were it something larger however…say, a citywide powerfailure after dark, I probably would have been a bit less charitable. I’d have grabbed my gear, locked things up, grabbed my Glock and head home.