Spoilers for all seasons of The Walking Dead ahead!
We all cope in different ways. In the days following the election, I reluctantly left my small house in northern Mississippi to go to class trying (and failing) not to cry every time anyone made eye contact with me. I was desperately searching for a balm against the despair—something that would be equal parts distracting, time-consuming, and unserious because I’m an expert practitioner of avoidance coping. Television, my first best friend, came through when The Walking Dead appeared as a suggested top pick on my Netflix and I thought, “Why not? A post-apocalyptic zombie survival show is just what I need to escape this present-day dawn of the apocalypse.”
I wasn't sure how many episodes I'd get through until I learned that Glenn, the only east Asian character in the series, would be killed off at the beginning of this seventh season. I watched all the way up to his demise as an act of solidarity (insert yellow fist emoji) on a show that’s been rightly called out for their problems with characters of color, particularly Black characters. In just a couple of weeks, I blazed through six seasons of plot holes and flat character development (as beloved as Glenn was, we must admit that he was completely two-dimensional), and ultimately the show did offer a temporary distraction and mental respite so that I would have energy for the long fight ahead. The show just wrapped up its mid-season finale and received the lowest viewership in years so it looks like I stopped watching the show at just the right time, and I wonder if it may be due to terror fatigue from its latest unrelenting villain, Negan. I late-live-tweeted my (mostly incredulous) reaction and was unsurprised when I found screengrabs and gifs from the zombie apocalypse that could be tied to a Trump presidency. I know gifs are on our list of media trends to leave in 2016, but here are some of my faves because sometimes you’ve gotta laugh to keep from crying.1. Probably some of the most lines that T-Dog spoke and it was too much truth for Dale.
tfw white liberals are like "let's just see how it goes" pic.twitter.com/66m5R9sOXt— Amy Lam (@amyadoyzie) November 17, 2016
all of our souls right now pic.twitter.com/kW7jtr9mIm— Amy Lam (@amyadoyzie) November 18, 2016
Michonne with that side eye in zombie Mayberry is me everyday pic.twitter.com/gfQGG6OJSk— Amy Lam (@amyadoyzie) November 19, 2016
these are the tough convos liberal white ppl need to have with their trump-supporting white families over the holidays pic.twitter.com/XPlU9dFKdT— Amy Lam (@amyadoyzie) November 21, 2016
trump voters in a very near future dystopia pic.twitter.com/Q9IUsWdnNo— Amy Lam (@amyadoyzie) November 28, 2016
when i try to make small talk with my depression pic.twitter.com/8rWepPiSAs— Amy Lam (@amyadoyzie) November 29, 2016
when a person of color tells a white person that white supremacy harms them too pic.twitter.com/BML9vlJ0ZR— Amy Lam (@amyadoyzie) November 30, 2016
watching poorly-written zombie apocalyse series was NOT a balm against impending doom, but it let me be petty af @ something inconsequential pic.twitter.com/ox8Tx8izbG— Amy Lam (@amyadoyzie) December 21, 2016