For those of you who have said you will no longer watch The Walking Dead, I understand. As Chris Hardwick said, all of your feelings are valid. And while; I’m emotionally wrecked from the episode as well, I’m also ready for more. Okay, maybe I wasn’t right away. It took me a couple of days to process what I saw, what I felt, and to understand what it means to me. It hurt so bad to see the heart of the show and two of my favorite characters to go, but they both went out in the way they lived, staying true to themselves, thinking only of family and love in the end. One with a peace sign and the other saying that he’ll find his love again.
There are so many good things to see and feel here; if only we look. This is what good stories (in any medium) should be. The height of all emotions and so many life takeaways disguised as escapism. This is the core of why so many people are swearing off watching it. Because we FELT their deaths, we were so emotionally caught up in the moment, it was as if we were watching our own family member be brutally murdered. We felt it right alongside the characters, we may as well have been kneeling there with them. Our hearts have been handed to us and we’ve been asked to feel.
If only we could all write such an emotionally compelling story. Find the right producers who will guide the show in such a direction that takes care not to deviate too far from where the heart of the story is, find the best writers who will stay true to the story and also find the best actors to portray your characters to such a degree that the audience is outraged when the character is killed off. And when they are gone, leave us with a hole in our hearts.
That is great storytelling, that is what we all strive for as creatives. Make people feel.
My heart is broken along with you all.
But if I walk away from the show now, I’m not giving those same writers, producers, actors the opportunity to show me that the death of these characters will mean something to the story. That’s where my faith is, my hope is, that in the story moving forward these characters are not forgotten, their deaths are not forgotten, but instead play a large part in what drives the story, what motivates the characters. That their deaths will, in the end, have meaning.
My heart is once again in your hands, I will feel what I need to feel and keep my hope alive. And trust in the telling of a really good story with lots of depth.
In the meantime, though, I’m going to go cuddle with a romance novel, where a “happily ever after” is golden. If you’re with me on that here are some suggestions.