What RomZomCom Films Have Taught Us about Surviving a Zombie Apocalypse

I’ll admit it, I’m a complete wimp. I hate horror films. Even the adverts scare me and when I’m home alone the slightest creak of the floor boards freaks me out. Despite this, there is one particular hybrid film genre that I can’t get enough of – the RomZomCom (that is Romantic Zombie Comedy).

My love for the RomZomCom all began with Edgar Wright’s fantastic Shaun of the Dead. I’m not alone in thinking it’s a great film either, it’s got a 91% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes and even received a Bafta nomination.

Shaun of the Dead was unique when released due to its combination of genres. The script, written by Wright and Simon Pegg, had constant and unexpected gags and the pace of directing reflected the urgency of the non-zombie characters on-screen.

The zombies could have been perceived as scary, but the plot, and incredible rapport between stars Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, made the sequences funny – especially when they first realise they are under attack and the only weapon they have are their vinyl cds.

However, if we’re looking for a way to act if a zombie apocalypse should occur (not in my lifetime please!) I don’t think we should follow the ways of Shaun and Ed. Even though it’s funny to repeatedly say “we’ll go to The Winchester, have a nice cold pint, and wait for all of this to blow over” it didn’t do the gang much good in the film.

Someone who is a little more prepared to survive a zombie apocalypse is Zombieland’s Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg). Again, it is a very popular film with a 90% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes and has a similar fast paced directing style to Shaun of the Dead.

Like Shaun of the Dead, Zombieland features many jokes and funny scenarios (there’s a Bill Murray cameo that will blow your mind) but during more dramatic moments the characters discuss the death of their families and you realise that they have had to come to terms with this dystopian future very quickly.

One of the best things about the film is its inclusion of rules Columbus has compiled since the zombie breakout. explains some of his rules and his reasons for them and as he kills zombies throughout the film.

Some of my favourite rules featured in the film are:


Cardio – It’s hilarious when Columbus explains that the first to get caught by the zombies were fat people because they couldn’t run away quick enough.


Double Tap – Columbus states that if you aren’t sure a zombie is dead; shoot it again in the head.


Beware of Bathrooms – Columbus is plagued by the fact he suffers from IBS as zombies have been known to attack whilst a person is on the toilet.


Seatbelts – Columbus expresses that there is always enough time to put your seatbelt on, even during a zombie apocalypse, a rule that goes on to save his life.


Check the back seat – Like the seat belt rule, there is always time to check the back seat of a car before setting off; you never know who, or what, could be lurking there.


Enjoy the little things – This is a rule added upon meeting Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson) who expresses the need to just let loose and have fun sometimes… in other words to wreck things to let out anger.


Be a hero – this is my favourite rule and one that changes throughout the film. Initially, Columbus believes being a hero can get you into trouble, but as he goes on to meet other survivors who form his new family, he learns it is important to act heroically sometimes.


The release of Jonathan Levine’s Warm Bodies has added yet another twist to the hybrid genre. The film, based on the book by Isaac Marion, has ties to Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet and the protagonist is actually a zombie.  However, I don’t think I’d suggest falling in love with a zombie should an apocalypse occur…

What rules would you follow to survive a zombie apocalypse?

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