On Chuck Closterman's Zombie Analogy and Stephen Graham Jones's "The Ones That Got Away"

It seems everyone is trying to deconstruct and decode the recent zombie craze, including Gail Collins in the NY Times, who wrote a funny piece about the zombie Congress, and this morning Chuck Closterman has a good(ish) piece in the NY Times describing how modern life is like a zombie attack (failing to mention dinner parties, I might add):

In the interest of “transparency” (and so Julian Assange doesn’t rat me out) I should declare that I’m not a fan of zombie movies, stories, or the “zombie mythos,” as one of my students recently put it. It all seems pretty dumb to me, frankly. As do vampires. Too one note. I live in Pennsylvania at least half my life, which is the setting for the original Night of the Living Dead and some of the subsequent sequels, so maybe it seems too close to home. I once told a class at Penn State that Night of the Living Dead was filmed here, and proposed that we should emblazon our license plates with the legend State of the Living Dead. (They frowned and didn’t think it was funny.) But the best writers can always put a new spin on any idea/metaphor: Stephen Graham Jones has a new book of horror fiction out, titled The Ones That Got Away, and it includes his killer story “Monsters,” which is (somewhat of) a zombie story, and puts a coming-of-age spin on it: troubled teen meets girl and has incipient romance, only to be undone by the undead. It’s a great example of genre mixing, a way to reenergize the undead. Or we can just eat their brains. And start saying, “You know, maybe the Republicans are right.”

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