The Trouble With Zombies

Or, what we know about zombies so far

It’s a zombie virus – airborne? Transmitted by bite? Blood? And it behaves a little bit like a recurring rash or the flu… symptoms appear early, indicating the onset of the illness, but how long the illness will last is unclear. Loved ones become zombies, but might get better any minute. But how to stop them in the meantime? And how long will it last? And how to take care of them?

The zombies are aggressive, belligerent, unpredictable. At any moment they can snap into action or snap out of it – often returning seamlessly to the conversation they were having before the zombie flu set in – the sufferer of the zombie flu has no recollection of what happened in its zombie-state. As we all know, the only way to stop a zombie is to destroy the brain – decapitation, gun shot etc… but this is a difficult decision to make if the owner of that brain might be back at any minute…

Human activities have radically changed. Jobs are reconfigured in this new world – tests for zombie infection and measures to protect it become critical – and totally economic. There are protests for zombie rights and protests for a zero tolerance zombie policy… there is human farming for brains and gated communities to keep the zombies out. There are scientists trying to develop cures for the virus, manufacturers developing synthetic brain substitutes and office workers desperately trying to hide the onset of symptoms from their friends. There are cults, there are stories of heroes, there is the sense that things are only getting worse.

The world is covered in a layer of green mist. Surveillance technology is on the increase, along with suspicion. There are cameras everywhere – and everyone is on the alert for the early signs of infection, or for the first warnings preceding an attack. Where did this come from? Is this an alien infection? Is there something other wordly about this epidemic? What are the implications for an island like Australia?

And then questions… In a world full of zombies, what makes us human?