The most political show on television today involves shambling ghouls that feed on human flesh and the meat puppets who try to avoid being feasted upon. “Fear the Walking Dead,” the “Walking Dead” spin-off set at the beginning of the zombie outbreak, offers us a view of the liberal, sensitive type of people who put Obama into office and – probably inadvertently – demonstrates the utter moral and intellectual bankruptcy of everything they believe in.
Modern liberalism is an unfortunate byproduct of civilization. The fact that our lives are not largely devoted to hunting and gathering food and fighting off marauders who would rape, enslave, and/or kill us, allows a large segment of our society to forget that this is the natural state of man. You didn’t have liberals in the Dark Ages because a liberal would last about ten seconds, expiring with a spear through his guts after telling the local warlord that he disapproved “of this patriarchal, phallocentric, cisnormative power structure.”
Now, of course a substantial number of Americans pay tribute to humanity’s past by understanding human nature and often by preparing to confront the forces of chaos. These people are conservatives. We conservatives expect problems, and expect that we will have to solve them ourselves. We generally know how to hunt, to gather food, and we have guns and know how to use them. And we understand that society always – always – teeters on the edge of falling apart.
Liberals don’t – in fact, they actively reject the notion because to accept it would require a complete rethink of their assumptions and premises. A couple of years ago, I got into a lengthy Twitter spat with Talking Points Memo editor Josh Marshall, who proudly identified himself as not of the gun-owning “tribe.” By this he meant that he did not feel the need to own weapons or to perform the most fundamental task of an American adult – to defend his family, community, and Constitution with his life – because some unidentified others would appear and do so for him.
He went on to mock the notion that society could ever collapse, which I found amusing. As one of those others who magically appeared to save the rear ends of hipster-bearded betas like Josh, I spent three weeks in the burning chaos of Los Angeles with the Army suppressing the 1992 riots. Don’t tell me things can’t go super bad super quickly.
The liberal characters in FTWD would probably earn invites to sip pumpkin-infused craft beers at Josh’s loft. The two main adults work in a public school, and their parenting style consists of catering to the whims of a drug addict son and the most obnoxious TV teen daughter since the hated Dana from the first few seasons of “Homeland.” When the apocalypse gets underway, yet another son decides to hang out at a street protest over police brutality sparked when the cops cap a homeless guy-turned-ghoul – apparently #UndeadLivesMatter.
In keeping with both the nature of their characters and with “The Walking Dead’s” traditions, the characters fail to communicate basic information to one another – you know, useful insights like, “Hey, the dead are rising and eating people, so you might want to look out for that.” They also undertake poorly thought-through, emotion-driven schemes that always end badly – in other words, they channel Obamacare.
Their tactical skills are distinctly limited. They never post guards, and they never look where they are going. Sure, part of that is the fact that if the characters were smarter and more capable, the threat, and therefore the suspense, would be lessened. But the other part is that these folks are not only soft-headed but soft-hearted, and therefore make bad, dangerous decisions. They talk about keeping their “humanity,” but what they really want to do is keep up residence in the expired liberal Eden that hard men carved out of a savage, hostile continent generations ago.
That’s why we get a scene with the father figure blowing his stack because a supporting character showed his activist son how to use a scavenged shotgun and daddy just doesn’t dig firearms. Naturally, none of these people have their own guns, much less the willingness to use them. At the end of one episode, their incompetence and weakness places another character in danger – a zombie they should have iced attacks him – and he is saved when a National Guard infantryman appears and puts a 5.56mm M4 round through the ghoul’s noggin.
Memo to Josh Marshall: That Army character’s left shoulder unit patch belongs to the real life 79th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, which I served in in Southern California. That’s my tribe, dude.
We will see where FTWD goes – already the show is turning on the military characters, the only characters who seem capable of exercising common sense, for their lack of sensitivity and feelings. There are a lot of feelings in FTWD – we in the audience always know exactly what the characters are feeling because they can’t shut up about it. But it’s clear that the focus of the show remains on the characters’ maintaining their “humanity” in the face of chaos, but what the writers really mean is maintaining the characters’ urban liberal illusions.
That’s why it is the most political show on television now – at least until the original “Walking Dead” revs up again in a few weeks. It’s because every episode demonstrates the utter meaninglessness of the liberals’ obsessions in the face of a world where monsters are real, where the monsters are ISIS and the mullahs instead of zombies. So lock, load, and stop babbling about your feelings, because you can’t coexist with someone who is trying to eat your head, or to chop it off. Nonsense like “microaggressions,” “nonjudgmentalism,” and “fairness” can only exist in a world built and defended by macroaggressive, judgmental, and unfair people who carry guns and don’t hesitate to use them.