Why zombies are taking over Britain

You might have read the story about scientists figuring out how to survive a zombie attack. Or the Reading zombie shopping mall. Or 2.8 Hours Later selling out all its London dates. But why do we give a crap anyway?

The zombies are coming! Toronto zombie parade, 2009 ( Eric.Parker, Flickr)

If you have kinemortophobia – fear of the undead – then look away now. Around Britain, the dead are coming back to life. What nobody expected was that they would be wearing quite so much make-up.

Thankfully it’s not a genuine zombie apocalypse, but the craze for all things undead has resulted in immersive theatrical games that give thrill-seekers the chance to fend off ‘zombies’ with replica weaponry, or simply try to outwit them for long enough to stay alive.

“It’s like a ghost train, but you take away the train,” says Lee Fields, a former special effects designer who created the Zombie Mall Experience in Reading to combine his love of Airsoft – a sort of paintball without the paint – with zombies.

“Zombie culture has been building for years,” he told me. “The draw is constant, impending doom: it’s like real life, death’s always going to get you in the end. The zombie apocalypse is one of those genres where people genuinely wonder what they would do.” Continue reading