The Big, The Bad, The Gory
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The Big, The Bad, The Gory

We're desensitizing to some really awful things.

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The Big, The Bad, The Gory
Dreamstime

Sunday night. I am excitedly awaiting the season premier of The Walking Dead season 8 in order to watch the long-awaited reveal of who was chosen to die during the season 7 finale. I sit next to one of my friends, and we try to guess the unfortunate character who will be removed from the show during this episode.

It's all fun and games until someone's head is bashed in with a baseball bat.

Two people, actually. Two characters lost their lives during this disgustingly gruesome episode (don't worry, I won't spoil who). The reason I bring it up is because this particular scene strayed from the normal gruesomeness of the show. They had a base level of how far they could/would go on the show. The writers were allowed to go pretty far with the how graphic they could be: guts, blood, zombies ripping people's faces off, the normal grisly stuff expected from an apocalyptic series. But this episode just blew all of the previously assumed boundaries apart, it crossed a line into arguably incredible madness.

Now, I love The Walking Dead. I love the philosophy behind it, the riveting and twisting story line, and the dynamic, complex characters that this show is infused with. But this time, they went too far. They showed too much. They touched into a very dark part of humanity. By showing one human being repeatedly bashing in the head of another human with a baseball bat wrapped in spiked wire, including the sounds of the bat repeatedly coming contact with the head until it reached the brain all against the soundtrack of the screaming and crying friends of this now dead character, created a horrifying and arguably traumatizing effect. It was graphic, it was in the audience's face, it was meant to rattle everyone (actors and fans alike). And props to the actors because they did actually make it very realistic, adding to the awful effect.

Let me just say that I've seen graphic before. I'm a super fan of action movies and war movies and bad ass movies where the protagonist expertly shoots his way out of a dangerous situation. But there was something about this that shook me in a different way, a scary way. Simply seeing the manifestation of someone's imagination on TV made it very real, even though it was all fiction. I realize it was all just a TV show, but there are people behind it, people to make it real and come alive on the screen.

This is just another way in which our society has desensitized to some very horrifying things. The people I was watching the show with didn't really react to the the gruesomeness. I, on the other hand, had to cover my eyes and ears in order to try and sit through it and even doing that I couldn't finish the episode. People are comfortable watching these shows, playing these video games, and participating in an increasingly desensitized culture. When did this become the norm? When did romanticizing death and violence become okay?

My mother says that the things we see go directly to our hearts. We can't let such darkness enter our hearts. We can't let Hollywood turn into this factory of big, bad, and gory because these are adjectives that sneak into the way we act and interact. I know that life sucks and life can be big, bad, and gory. But if everything all around me is bad all the time, why does what I watch have to be worse? Why does it have to step into the darkest aspects of the human mind and reveal itself on my TV? This is the stuff of madness. This is the stuff that I don't want to let into my heart.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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