12
Nov
2011
Random Pop Culture Question of the Week
Preferred Apocalypse
the Staff
Random Pop Culture Question of the Week is a bi-weekly journey into the headspace of the Review to Be Named gang, in which a pop-culture question is posed, answers are sought, and discussions are generated about issues and hypotheticals from throughout the realm of pop culture.

This week's question comes from our own Chris, who asked:
If you had to pick a post apocalyptic world of some movie to live in which would it be?

Jordan

Look, I know the zombie apocalypse is no one's idea of a good time. The dead rising, shuffling along, and generally trying to devour you every second of every day. It certainly wouldn't be a walk in the park, but then hey, what post-apocalypse that's worth its salt is? That's why I would pick the post-apocalypse depicted in Zombieland. Sure, there are undead hordes chasing that film's heroes throughout the movie, but when you think about it, they've got it pretty good. The zombie apocalypse seems to have happened pretty quickly here, leaving society relatively untouched. Sure, the perishables are gone, but this grocery store is still pretty well stocked considering the world has ended:



Plus, the roads are clear enough to drive on most of the time, the company seems willing to make the best of a bad situation, and hey, there's always a chance I'll run into Bill Murray and get to reenact Ghostbusters for a while. If that fails, there's always the post-robopocalyptic future of The Matrix, where everything is really shitty, but at least you can jack yourself into a world that looks just like 1999, except this time you have super powers and instant access to any knowledge you might need to get by. Ultimately, though, I'll take anything as long as it's not the idealistic future James Cameron foresaw in (and wisely cut out of) Terminator 2. I'll take the zombies and the robots, just please don't make me sit through a future with a playground on the National Mall and, perish the thought, hope in the future of humanity. That really would be the end of the world as we know it.




Chris



I would settle in the post apocalyptic but strangely patriotic wasteland of Independence Day. Sure the cities are gone, the planet and its populace are being cooked by strange radiation from giant exploding/falling spaceships, and Bill Pullman is the president, but look on the bright side! If the majority of survivors were plucky strippers, crop dusters, and generally anyone living out of a motor vehicle, then chances are just by entering this world I have become one of the smartest people on the planet. My job prospects and yearly asking salary have increased exponentially just by being alive. Also, the Y The Last Man movie is stuck in pre-production hell so it was unavailable for choosing at the time of publication.


Alex



Most post-apocalypses (apocalypsi?) would have you scouring for food, stocking up on fresh water, and living out your days not knowing which one will be your last. My preferred post-apocalypse saves me from all those headaches and just leaves me with some mild bone loss. My post-apocalypse of choice is in the charming and wonderful Pixar film Wall·E. With all that gross apocalyptiness thousands of miles away, I'll be living in ignorant bliss thanks to Buy N Large. Sure robots would be doing everything for me and I'll always change from one primary color to the next when it's the cool thing to do, but while you're all on earth being dirty, I'll be sitting pretty by the Lido deck. Not splashing.




Michael

I'm fairly confident that in any apocalypse, I would be the first to die, no matter how prepared I am. I read World War Z and The Road, and I know nine years in the Boy Scouts isn't going to save me from cannibal rapists and the undead, no matter how quickly I can start a fire without matches. This question, in fact, reminds me of this bit from Kumail Nanjiani on The Thing, and how everybody thinks they'd be the survivors despite all evidence to the contrary.

http://comedians.jokes.com/kumail-nanjiani/videos/kumail-nanjiani---horror-movies (skip to 1:10)

"I'm going to be the first one to die. I die so the other characters get to figure out something weird's going on." Nobody admits it, but statistically it's true. So for this question, I had to balance my abilities against the movie scenario. I've measured my abilities in video game experience, and the worst case scenario in terms of my ultimate ending in each given world.

Zombies a la 28 Days Later:
I never got past the first level in Resident Evil 4, so I definitely couldn't be relied on to save the President's daughter. Not only would I die, but I'd let down the country as well. On the other hand, I was pretty good at Left 4 Dead, but I would often hold off the zombie horde while my roommate escaped to safety. In real life, my roommate would probably let that happen yet again. Zombies are out. (Note: If you just chafed at me referring to 28 Days Later as a "zombie movie," shut up, nerd. Nobody else cares.)

Nuclear war a la The Day After :
Boom, I was the man at Fallout. That game was simple as long as you could handle small arms and were reasonably charming. Too bad I'm bookish and have fired guns only once in my life. I would become a supermutant with my current skill levels. Plus, I live in an area that would be instantly obliterated. I can see the Capitol building from my window, and that's the first thing that gets hit. Nope, I die right away if there's a nuclear war.

Plague a la Contagion:
This is a tough one, because the only infection based video game that I've ever played involved playing as the virus itself in Pandemic. Luckily, I now know the one secret to surviving any kind of serious disease. Fucking Madagascar. Me and a few thousand fans of flash games will immediately emigrate to the shores of that island paradise where no infection will ever get us. It's the one I'm definitely most likely to survive in. Unless that infection turns people into zombies, in which case I'm lunch.



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