So there I was….going over the Comic Con San Diego show schedule when I came across this headline for the show “Deadliest Warrior: Vampires vs. Zombies“. Aw crap, there goes the neighborhood!
Think about it. Back in the 1930′s, a new genre was born with creatures like Frankenstein and Dracula, the Mummy and White Zombie. These were great movies that really entertained (scared) you because the monster was killing people like YOU!!! In the 50′s the original Godzilla scared the hell out of me, because the movie made me imagine what would happen if a giant dinosaur showed up one day and stepped on MY house! Then there’s Freddy, Michael Meyers, yada-yada……..
When these movie franchises start out, we get to watch really good monsters play in really good stories. At least for a while……
So now the studio that made all that money on the first movie wants more money. And so they pay the filmmaker to make a sequel. The filmmaker is really happy, so he makes a sequel. Many times the sequel can be as good or better than the original. The process repeats and more money is made.
BUT then it happens. The filmmaker runs out of stories, but the studio wants to make more money. So the studio comes up with a brilliant idea. They decide to fire the filmmaker and confiscate his washed-up monsters. Then they take other washed-up monsters from other fired filmmakers and have them fight each other. It’s like “My Dad Can Beat Up Your Dad” only with monsters.
We all have monster preferences. Some of us like vampires, some like werewolves, others like zombies. So it’s only human nature that we should want to see them fight…..right???. It’s only natural to want to see who slaughters who. Monster gladiators battle to the death before your eyes!
What’s interesting is that these movies almost always reek. Yet the studios keep producing them. Check out Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943). A ridiculous movie using old, rehashed material from the originals. But wait there’s more. The worst were the very silly “Godzilla vs. [monster du jour]” movies. TOHO Studios turned one the most horrific monsters from a masterfully made film into an impotent teddy bear. The only redemption with these movies was that if you were stoned enough, they could be quite funny.
What is it that makes us want to see Freddy fight Jason, and some guy in a rubber Godzilla suit fight some guy in rubber King Kong suit so badly we will spend our money and sit through hours of horribly made footage?
I don’t know. But I think it does show us that we as people love pointless conflict. In fact, we’re even willing to go through great pains to watch it.
So the next time you’re bitching about how we got involved in some pointless war in some god forsaken country, ask yourself………is it really just the President’s fault!
Or more importantly, the next time you have an impulse to fight with someone you love, you might want ask yourself if there is really any point to it…..
Now go watch True Love Zombie this weekend! WOO-HOO!