First up, Shaun of the Dead is a perfect movie. With that in mind, know that I am now and will forever be a fan of the zombie genre. Books, films, games both tabletop and video; give me an undead horde and I’m there. It’s a healthy obsession now in its second decade and I am fine with that.
Could my obsession be going over the edge with outlining a zombie themed rock opera? Yes. I’m doing it anyway!
Here’s the set list.
The Only Outbreak I Used to be Worried About was Acne The opening song to introduce our main hero, a teenager just trying to survive. A solo number, it opens with the character against a bathroom door being torn apart by undead hands. The hero is armed with a hair dryer and a fire poker. Ends with a bunch of re-dead undead laying around the hero. Cut the lights.
I’m Going to Rock this Apocalyptic Hellscape The anthem of the sidekick who is having all too much fun in the end of days. The character is introduced riding on the roof of a truck heading down a highway. Character is swinging a chainsaw wildly. Key line: “zombie, bomb me, nothin’ gonna stop me from rockin’ this hellscape we call home!” Chorus of zombies sings over chugging electric guitar.
The Cure is More than Just a Band There has to be a slight glimmer of hope and that will provided after the Hero and the Sidekick join forces and happen upon a radio signal promising shelter to anyone who can bring a certain drug to a certain place at a certain time (Friday). Key line: If I could just laze at the end of days, darling that’d be lovely. Sang from inside a cabin full of neon signs for discontinued beers.
Melee or Ranged? What is the Question? Finally, a humorous number to break up all the drama. Hero and Sidekick have a tap dance battle to decide if melee weapons or ranged weapons are better for the zombie apocalypse. The dance ends when their temporary shelter gets a polite knock on the door. A line of dancers in baseball bat and crossbow costumes form a half circle around the two and say, “ooooooohhhh!” often. Key line: My bow, you know, will slow dead Joe. Your bat falls flat; you ain’t up for that. Sang by Hero and boy howdy is Sidekick put in his place.
Friend or Foe The tune following the knock at the door introduces a third character who possesses the drug in question! This character is currently called Third Tier Plot Device Key line: Friend or foe? I don’t know! Does its skin glow? No! Bring them on in! Key line two: I have a bag of supplies, imagine my surprise, you guys, the radio says this is just the right size.
The Walk on the Yellow Brick Road This song is lifted straight from the Oz mythos and set to Night Ranger’s Sister Christian music. The talking scarecrow is explained away by toxins in the water. Eventually the crew reaches the place the radio tells them. Key line: Oh my gosh I’m tripping on the Yellow Brick Road. Didn’t think about licking that toad.
Horde! The big final battle. Throughout the totally rockin’ adventure of Hero and Sidekick and Third Tier Plot Device, they knock zombie heads off and down and all around using totally rockin’ dance moves. This last battle, on the door step of the place that can make the cure, sees the trio meet tragedy. Third Tier Plot Device is dead before the first verse is finished, but in a gut wrenching moment, Sidekick dies! Spotlights shine on Hero as Sidekick perishes in Hero’s arms. Key line: My hand, my hand, of all the things to end me, the little devils bit me in my hand, my hand. This is followed by the two saying good bye as Hero steps inside the building. Hero turns and Sidekick’s body shambles into what remains of the horde.
Can We Fix it? Yes we can! Maybe. The drug delivered, a team of scientists gets to work on making a cure. Zombies are closing in. Hero forgot the close the door (best friend just died and all, other things on the mind). Key line: I think it’s ready, everyone hold steady. Push this button everything gets heavy. “Push the button, just push the button!”
As the scientist goes to push the button to make the cure, the curtain drops. End of show. Like The Sopranos ending, but in stage form. The orchestra pit starts playing that big song from Annie and the cast takes their bow regardless of audience reaction.
So, I’m going to write this out and send it to Hollywood. That’s where rock operas get made, right?
Thanks for reading!