The Death Trap
Zombie apocalypses are not fair. Who lives and who dies is as much dumb luck as anything else. Being in the right place at the right time. Maybe hooking up with a leader who’s willing to keep you alive. When things go to hell, your chances at survival—at least initially—will be heavily dependent on pure, stupid, chance. And that means that there will be a lot of idiots running around.
Maybe they are the kind of person who makes a lot of noise when they need to be quiet. Maybe they are the person who is supposed to guard the door and let you in after you go out to get water, but then they get distracted. These are the guys who always come out of hiding thirty seconds too soon, who start a fire in the middle of the night, who fire a gun to kill a single zombie when a blunt instrument to the back of the head would do just fine. Sometimes they refuse to accept reality, constantly arguing that the zombies can be saved or that the group shouldn’t kill the guy who has been bit and is clearly five minutes from being a full blown Zed (note the Canadian, eh. I’m inclusive.) Or maybe they are the girl who insists on going after the darn dog when it runs off into the midst of the zombie horde. Or maybe they are the dog. (I’m looking at you Chips.) Either way, two things are certain. They aren’t making it to the end of the movie/zombie apocalypse, and neither are you.
Then there is the survivor. It may seem trite, but there’s only one type of person who survives to the end of a zombie apocalypse. It takes someone who is resourceful, someone who has some of the characteristics of the leader without the constant need to be the hero. The survivor can make it on his own when he needs to, but he seeks out a good group of other survivors as soon as he can, recognizing that no one can live on their own. He has a gun and can build a fire. He is willing to kill when he has to, and he recognizes that zombies are not people. He also knows that while only the survivors survive, they don’t always. The cruel luck of the zombie apocalypse will strike them down as indiscriminately as anyone else. But if humanity is to rebound, it will be built upon the survivors.
So that’s five. Whatever could the sixth one be?
Whenever people make this sort of list, they always forget about zombies. But depending on the type of zombie uprising we are dealing with, the undead may be the only thing you see.
It’s commonly accepted among zomboligists that there are three stages of zombie infestation. The first stage consists of one or two isolated cases, at most a small group. Shocking yes, and no doubt the existence of a reanimated corpse would change everything about the way we see the world. But as far as a threat, a Class I event is easily contained and no great threat to the majority of people.
The second stage of a zombie rising affects an area as large as a city. Much worse than a Class I infestation, thousands will die and whatever city is hit will be lost. But unless you live in the city affected, you’ll probably be OK during a Class II event and the military will eventually regain control.
Not so with a Class III event. Class III is the apocalypse. Class III is the end of the world. What are the chances you will survive? What are the chances you will even know what is happening before you come face to face with a zombie? And when that happens, what are you going to do?
Probably get bit.
And that’s the thing. Most people won’t survive the zombie apocalypse. No matter how well thought out your plan, you probably won’t even get to put it in place. Or something simple will throw you off. You’ll be on vacation. You won’t be able to get back to your apartment and pick up your weapons. Even if you do survive, you are going to see zombies. You are going to have to kill them. No one will survive the zombie apocalypse unscathed. In the end you’ll have to choose—beat um or join um.