The Walking Dead: I love it and you shouldn’t watch it

At some point in my life I became a television reviewer. I’m not sure why, or how, but one should embrace these things when they happen. When the paths find you. Or when you happen upon a path, because paths don’t move, for the most part, unless they’re roads diverging in a yellow wood.

Television reviewer = pretty well trodden path. It’s almost sad that I didn’t discover this talent while I was living in Japan because there was such a wealth of utterly bonkers material. It got to the point that I couldn’t turn on my television, for fear of nightmares. I used it as a small table/jellybean stand, and it functioned beautifully. Anyone who has ever spent any time in Japan, or read 1Q84 knows that owning a television leaves you open to the machinations of the NHK man, who might kill you, or so Murakami says. But whenever the NHK man (much like a BBC licence collector, only less British and more persistent, and without the excuse of having produced spectacular television) came to my apartment I would merely show him my small convenient table, offer him a jellybean and then send him on his way.

This never happened.

And I almost never watched Japanese television, not because it was scary, but because listening to a foreign language at length is alienating and scary. Instead, I downloaded all 7 series of Gilmore Girls and have been watching them on a loop ever since.

I am television reviewer, albeit one with an inexplicable attachment to Lorelai and Rory, and thus I feel fully, spectacularly qualified to tell you this: do not watching The Walking Dead.

Yup, it’s brilliant. Yup, the acting and the scripts are novel and interesting, you’ll become invested in the characters and you’ll watch Seasons One and Two in under two weeks and be gagging for more, to the point where you’ll sell your Breaking Bad DVDs in order to obtain Series Three. There’s something in that, selling the meth cook to satisfy the habit.

I am addicted to zombies.

I’m not ashamed to like the show. I’m not ashamed that every time Rick, Sheriff McSexEyes, raises his gaze to the screen, I think of the same actor trotting along the Thames, drowning in love for Keira Knightley. We’ve all been there. We should embrace it. It’s a… self-preservation thing.

I love him. I love Walking Dead. DON’T, under any circumstances, watch it.

There is one circumstance under which you can watch it: if you are inured to horror. If gaping faces and bloody corpses and shocks and moans and guts and bones leave you cold (like the GRAVE), then you should go for it. This is the show for you.

But otherwise, you are like me. You are the kind of person who pictures shapes behind shower curtains, who tucks extremities under covers. You are the kind of person who cannot successfully separate the real life from the fiction – for whom horrific events on screens and between pages can leak out and form dark puddles. DARK WATER. Why did I watch that? And now I live in a house with a leaky roof, of course I do. And if you are that kind of person – god save you from R16 movies – then (and here we get to the meat of it, much like a zombie would) you should not watch The Walking Dead, because you will never have sex again.

Boyfriend and I are modern working types, which means 10 hour working days and approximately the hours between 7.30-11, 3 or so days a week, spent in each other’s company. It’s enough, if we’re careful and try avoid fighting about newspapers and dishes. But it’s not enough if you spend 1-2 of those hours, every night, watching mangled ex-men strip the flesh from the bones of screaming women, because even if you can cuddle and soothe each other during, you will not want to touch each other afterwards. Do you know how much sex noises sound like zombie noises? HEAPS. Do you know how unattractive sexy-neck-nibbles become when you’ve just watch a blonde six-year-old tear out a jugular? VERY.

So don’t. Don’t. Save yourself, and save your sex life. Continue along the Netflix path of lesbian inmates and drug-dealing teachers and don’t stray into the land where the dead walk. I myself look forward to the end of Season 4 and returning to the land of the living.

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