Zombies in the Closet

Anna Torv gets to do almost all of the gun-toting in Fringe. It's very progressive.

Anna Torv gets to do almost all of the shooting in Fringe. It’s very progressive.

Late the other night I returned to the San Francisco apartment I share with several young men to discover that the downstairs front door was unlocked. As I trudged up the dark, narrow stairs I couldn’t help wonder what kind of slime-dripping mutant aberration was waiting for me in my apartment.

I don’t know if you’re familiar with the fine TV show Fringe, which ended a five-year run last season? Lately I’ve been watching a lot of it on Netflix.  It’s horror-science fiction, and in its early episodes was quite formulaic. Generally some unsuspecting doofus like myself goes into a darkened hallway, basement, apartment, lab, whatever, there’s a gristly munching noise followed by enthusiastic screaming, then roll opening credits. After the commercial the investigators would examine a beslimed and disassembled corpse and Dr. Bishop the mad scientist would say, “This mucus-like substance could only be digestive fluid from a human/scorpion/walrus hybrid super-soldier, like the one I was working on for the Army back in the 70s!”

Like me, you’re probably wondering two things. First, what’s up with the Army always trying to create super-soldiers? Last week I watched a movie where some idiot general thought that he could weaponize werewolves; you can imagine how that turned out. (Hint: badly.) And the other night it was a frickin’ Army-built super-plague that escaped into Los Angeles with predictable results.

Not cool, Army Dudes, not cool. Stick with your current recruiting pool of American kids desperately looking for a way to pay for college and everybody will be happier.

What is it about these FBI women? Good lord.

What is it with these FBI women? Good Lord.

Second, you’re probably wondering what the hell is wrong with my brain. Who thinks of things like that anyway? A normal person would be wondering which of his idiot roommates was always leaving the apartment door unlocked, or at worst might be concerned about a possible burglary. But anticipating a slime-dripping mutant super-soldier lurking in the hall closet? That’s a little out there, no?

I suppose.

Maybe I’m just watching too much “Fringe” and other horror programs. Perhaps I should watch “Happy Days” instead. Nobody even locks their doors on that show, let alone worries about getting impregnated by chest-popping alien eggs during a brutal nighttime home invasion. But I don’t watch “Happy Days.” Instead, I binge on horror TV shows and movies that put weird paranoid thoughts in my head.

For instance, while riding the bus to work I’m often plotting an escape route in case a large group of zombies should come shambling around the corner or thinking about what I’d do if a giant Japanese robot accidentally sat on the building I work in. (Answer: die.) I stop short of actually preparing for an oncoming horror apocalypse in any way* but I sure do think about it.

I suppose this is some kind of compensation for deep-seated feelings of helplessness in the face of the complexities of modern society. I have no control over my actual reality, so I escape into an alternate world where, although deadly, at least the problems can be solved by whacking them firmly and repeatedly on the head with a hammer.

Maybe this is even healthy. Hell, it’s certainly better than shooting at folks from a clock tower, which is where I’d be if I watched goddamned “Happy Days” for any length of time.

“Look, gang! It’s Fonzi!”




*Except for always having a year’s supply of Cheez Doodles on hand, but that’s common prudence.


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12 Responses to “Zombies in the Closet”

  1. Larry Craig Says:

    I thought from the title, “Zombies in the closet,” you were going to talk about Pat Robertson being gay. Very disappointed that you passed up this opportunity.

    • Paul Murphy Says:

      What’s wrong with you? I refuse to think about Pat Robertson having sex with anyone, no matter what the gender. I mean, brrrrrrr.

  2. Irrelevant Says:

    Lol at the above comment.
    Also, I relate to the crazy plotting in case a creepy monster from a movie suddenly happens to be flossing its teeth in the bathroom where you go for a nightly pee. I’m a 26 year old nurse, and I have a nightlight, a flashlight on my nightstand AND one dangling from a nail on my door post in case I couldn’t find the one next to my bed right away and really have to go. I’m deathly afraid of the dark. I hear things and freeze for hours, only to go to sleep in the morning when the sun comes up -things don’t seem as frightening then.
    But hey, I function, and I SEEM perfectly sorted and mature. You’re not alone.

    • Paul Murphy Says:

      My main problem is that I sometimes forget I’m not at home in PA with my wife and I go ambling out of my room into the common bathroom buck nekkid. I haven’t bumped into any roommates that way yet, but it’s only a matter of time. Let’s all pray that they’re not carrying flashlights when it does happen.

      • Irrelevant Says:

        That’s a very different problem indeed. They may confuse you with [REC]’s final frame. Google it lol.

  3. Angasa Says:

    I love fringe! My emergency in-case-of-zombies-slash-other-apocalyptic-disaster is to find a mad scientist recently released from a mental health facility whose fondness of LSD and liquorice will somehow thwart said impending disaster (and open a gateway into another universe)

    Also, I highly endorse Larry Craig’s comment!

  4. Notes To Ponder Says:

    Oh man! Here I thought my family was the only ones planning Zombie escape routes. Ever since my daughter started having Zombie nightmares when she was 10 or so we’ve plotted Zombie escape scenarios. Zombies are a serious matter – she may be almost 30 now but Zombie plans are still a topic of heated discussion. We could elude those brain suckers in an instant 🙂

    • Paul Murphy Says:

      I like the “Walking Dead” move of shooting the slow guy inna knee and then sprinting off while they eat him.

      • Notes To Ponder Says:

        The first course of action is to determine what sort of Zombie you’re dealing with. Are they slow and lurchy or swift and sure. It makes a huge difference to your survival plan:)

  5. Paul Murphy Says:

    I hate fast zombies. They’re big fat cheaters. I wouldn’t be eaten by a fast zombie if you paid me.

  6. sahiljain507 Says:

    Reblogged this on sahiljain507.

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