Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Genre Character of the Week: Rick Grimes

This week I thought I would start looking at some of the many characters I love from genre fiction. As I focused on a personal favourite from SF last week, and as Halloween is a mere three days away, it's time to focus on one of my favourites in horror.

From the horror comic series The Walking Dead by Robert Kirkman, Officer Rick Grimes, represents, to me anyway, one of the better role models when it comes to surviving a zombie apocalypse. Waking up in a hospital in the first issue, Rick is dropped head-first into the horrors that this new zombie-ruled world has in store for him. Over the more than 60 issues of this series (it is still ongoing) Rick continually, although not voluntarily, stands up for his small band of survivors and does everything he can to ensure their survival. This guy is simply a blue-collar every-man who is trying to do the best he can in one of the worst situations in genre fiction.

I find there is a lot about Rick I can relate to; he's married, a parent, likes to be proactive in problem solving - rather than simply running from the zombies he looks for a safe long-term location to live, and his solution makes perfect sense from a zombie-defence point of view. Although I am not a police officer, the main character as protector is easy to relate to as a dad, and the importance of getting people to work together is something that I think is relatable to most people.

In the end, Rick goes through more than I would ever, EVER want to go through. He does things for his family I only hope I could do if the world ever went to hell, but I think that is his greatest appeal, a regular guy who does everything he can to protect the people he loves.

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