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Comic book and TV fans keep the undead fad alive

The latest season of The Walking Dead has taken a hit in terms of ratings. The opening episode of season eight had one of the lowest ratings in the show’s history with 11.4 million viewers. At the peak of the show, season five brought more than 17.2 million viewers for its premiere. 

Despite ratings going down, true fans of the zombie genre have stuck through to see their favorite shows. 

“I think the show is actually really good,” Dylan Erdmann, a freshman studying sociology-criminology, said. “The issue that people don’t think about is it’s a drama show, so there’s going to be times slower than others.”

Season two is one example of a slower season, but that was to focus more on plot and character development, Erdmann said. 

Sam Berlin, an employee at The Wizard’s Guild on 19 W. Washington St., is an avid reader of comics. He, too, enjoys The Walking Dead but reads the comic as opposed to watching the show.

“Part of why I liked it was because I was afraid of (zombies),” Berlin said. “With The Walking Dead, it was a lot about the survival aspect.”

Berlin stopped watching the show after season one because of his lack of time to watch TV, but he did enjoy it. He likes the comic and show because it is a zombie story that does not have a rescue team at the end.

He might catch up on the TV show one day, but for now, Berlin reads the comics every time a new one is released. The show has diverged so much from the comic over the years so there are no real spoilers for him, Berlin said. 

“My guess is people stopped watching just because they got tired of it,” Berlin said.

Erdmann’s favorite movie in the zombie genre is Zombieland because of how it combines humor and the undead. Despite Zombieland not making a lot of money, it received good reviews

When the original Night of the Living Dead came out in 1968, it made $30 million at the time, which is $220 million adjusted for inflation. The film is considered to be one of the first zombie movies.

Though recent zombie movies such as I am Legend and World War Z were box office hits and made more than $500 million each, some movies in the genre have flopped. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, released in 2016, only made a slightly less than $11 million even with  stars like Lily James. 

Berlin does not only enjoy the zombie genre; he likes vampire movies and comics as well. Vampire movies and TV shows have also taken hits to their ratings. The popular series The Vampire Diaries was canceled after eight seasons. 

Berlin also watched the show Buffy the Vampire Slayer when it was on TV between 1997 and 2003. Vampires fall in his fascination of classic horror things, Berlin said. 

“I do like Dracula. He’s kind of like an antihero,” Berlin said. “I also like the movie Van Helsing a lot.”

Elyssa Diraddo, a junior studying music therapy, is not a fan of zombie TV shows and movies. She finds them too bloody and gory and prefers other genres.

“Oftentimes I’d shield my eyes and see what happened afterwards,” Diraddo said. 


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