Fact: Zombie shows are pretty much the biggest thing since sliced, er, brains. Also fact: While they’re entertaining, they could also hold the key to your survival during an actual zombie apocalypse. While we really, really hope we don’t all have to fight off mindless flesh eaters, it helps to know what you’re up against. Thanks to shows like The Walking Dead, Game of Thrones and In the Flesh, we’ll be prepared for whatever viral epidemic turns the entire human population into “walkers.”
1. Aim for the Head
For some reason, all zombie shows and movies agree on one bit of information. Zombies are dead, so they can’t technically be killed. However, if you happen to have a gun or sword handy, aim for the head. Apparently, zombies still have functioning brains and therefore can be stopped in their slow-moving tracks with a well-placed shot to the prefrontal cortex.
2. Tuck and Roll
During the first season of The Walking Dead, the live ones had to roll themselves in zombie remains to stay hidden from the walkers. In fact, the rules tweeted out by the show before the start of season one clearly state: Zombies have poor eyesight but they do have a strong sense of smell. However, in season two, the cast escaped a tense moment with a mob of zombies by hiding under cars, deciding that hiding was better than fighting. Our best take? Do both. Hide in a pile of zombie guts and you’ll be fine.
3. Light a Match
The Game of Thrones incarnation of the undead — the uber-creepy wight — is said to be extremely flammable. That’s awesome if you happen to have a match handy. If you don’t, try throwing off a few sparks from a piece of flint or using one of your baby dragons. Or, try what the Free Folk do as a preventative measure—burn your dead so they can’t come back as zombies. Hey, zombie shows have some good ideas.
4. Engage in a Battle of Wits or Very Small Objects
Both wights and walkers have two things in common—they aren’t super smart and they have minimal dexterity. It seems that coming back from the dead obliterates their thought process and ability to manipulate small objects. You’ve definitely got a leg up if you find yourself engaged in a sudden death round of trivia with a zombie, but we suggest just keeping a supply of weapons that require fine motor skills handy—grenades, anyone?
5. If You Can’t Beat ‘Em, Join ‘Em
OK, so this is more of a movie zombie phenomenon, as seen in both Shaun of the Dead and Warm Bodies: If you find yourself surrounded by zombies, the best defense is to pretend you’re one of them. Stick your arms out front, shuffle and groan, and those brainless zombies will simply accept you as one of their own. Survival and popularity? All of your problems are solved!
What are your zombie apocalypse rules? Come on, you know you’ve thought about it.
Take an interactive look at a day in the life of walkers from The Walking Dead, here.
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