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Me – post apocalypse

So, as I was saying yesterday, I just got done watching the first season of The Colony on Netflix. The basic premise is that 10 people are put together into a huge warehouse in LA in conditions mimicking those that might exist after a global disaster. Public utilities are shut off, so the colonists have to figure out how to filter river water and rig up car batteries for electricity. They have to scavenge in a cordoned off hospital for medical supplies, and bands of marauders and beggars threaten their safety. Of course, like all reality TV, The Colony definitely has its fair share of fake events. The show tells viewers that experts were standing by to help in the event of life-threatening emergencies, but I think the definition of life-threatening might have been a little loose because I found it fairly unlikely that the show’s participants could come up with workable plans to revive inventions that went out of vogue years ago without some generous help from the sidelines.

At any rate, I formed a few observations as I was watching the show.

1) I don’t think I’ll make it very far after an apocalypse. It turns out that an English teacher’s skills won’t be needed. If an apocalypse does occur, I’m going to take the route of the city that passes by a foundry and auto body shop, and I’m going to try to convince some of the people working there to escape with me because their skills will come in handy. I’ll try to pick up an engineer, and electrician, and a construction worker or two along the way. And, I’ll try to learn how to cook rice and canned tuna really well over open flames because that is the only way my fellow colonists will keep me around. Also, I will not ever criticize their grammar.

2) I can’t say for sure, but I think I’d rather eat cat food than rats. On the show, the colonists trapped some rats and almost everyone ate them while I sat in my living room wanting to gag. Then, on the last episode, one of the colonists resorted to eating cat food while everyone else looked on  in shock. You can disagree with me, but I’m going to go with the cat food first. Although, this is mostly a cultural hang-up. There are people in various parts of the world that include rats in their regular diets. At least, that’s what Wikipedia told me.

3) I will not do well interpersonally in a post-apocalypse world. People get stressed out by the change in circumstances, and they yell – all the time. This will put me on the edge, and I’ll either run from the colony to join a band of marauders, or I will punch someone, break my fist on them, and be ostracized from the group, kicked out to fend for myself with only a few cans of rejected cat food.

4) Academics are changing my perceptive lens of the world. This is not an observation about my hypothetical post-apocalypse experience. Rather, it’s just an observation. While watching the show, I kept thinking about how cool it would be to show clips of it in a Group Dynamics or Sociology class. And, I kept thinking, “There is no way that this type of experiment would ever make it past an IRB board; good thing a cable channel could get away with it.”

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4 responses »

  1. First of all, fake scenes or not, I thought that was an excellent series. I watched it in two sittings. The producers did an excellent job of putting together a good mixture of personalities. I guess they had to in order to make good TV. The truth be told, I am a sucker for the Post-Apocalyptic genre; reality-themed or otherwise. What I really appreciated is how they cataloged even some of the finer details such as sleeping conditions and what happens to food when it is passed by the body as waste material. Most apocalypse productions overlook things like that.

    Building a spark-gap radio had to be the biggest waste of time and resources I have ever seen. If I had been on that show, I would have been one of the ones butting heads and yelling. The whole world and civilization as we know it has just gone down the crapper and father time wants to build a wireless telegraph… not on my watch.

    I have do disagree with your first sentiment about an English Teacher’s skills not being needed after the Apocalypse. That is either an exceptionally narrow-minded view, ~or~ you don’t plan to survive long. While the initial shock of a survival-based existence will take its toll on everyone, adults won’t be the only people to survive. The remnant would need educated people capable of finding academic and scholastic ability in the youth that would eventually aid in new and reconstructive innovations. Not to say your only role would be educating children, but it would be a strong point, and sufficient reason to put you further down on the list of people to be cannibalized if it came to that. [99.9% kidding] There will be a need for [almost] everyone.

    I think your next Netflix experience should be Out of the Wild: Alaska. Not post-apocalypse, but definitely survival. If it’s interpersonal interaction that you like more, Out of the Wild: Venezuela has some interesting personalities.

    Back to the apocalypse. If you find yourself drifting toward becoming a “Doomsday Prepper”, BJ’s has a dry food kit that will feed two people for two years and has a shelf-life of three decades. Just sayin’.

    Reply
    • I did think the spark-gap transmitter was a dumb idea when they were trying to find the doctor, but then they did wind up getting the coordinates for the new settlement through their received. And, I’m glad to see that I’ve moved up the list and am in less danger of being cannibalized 🙂 I never knew that about BJ’s that sounds pretty intense. If my mom and grandma had known of such a thing as Y2K approached, I can guarantee, they would have invested in several of them.

      Reply
  2. My old boss, Jeff, loved that show! I watched a few episodes & even got paid to watch it once (for a focus group). I can’t be sure… But I think I remember that they deprived the cast of sleep before the show started to disorient them. Pretty interesting!

    Reply
    • I remembered you telling me about the focus group. You must not have been too helpful because they canceled season 3 😛 And, you’re right, the cast was sleep deprived before starting the show.

      Reply

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