Maxim Yenalyev

Strategic decisions and economic basis in zombie apocalypses by the example of TV series “The Walking Dead”

Maxim Yenalyev

TV series “The Walking Dead” which is produced by AMC Studios is one of the most popular projects on TV cable network. This TV series was broadcast in all key regions (including the USA and Europe).
TV series “The Walking Dead” (TWD) is a television adaptation of Robert Kirkman’s comic series.
Also TWD has become a cultural phenomenon that sparked a worldwide interest. For example special wikis (web-sites with specific structure and community) that are dedicated to comic series, TV series and TWD video games, This wikies are available in several languages: in English (with slightly more than 5 000 articles), German, Spanish, Portuguese (Brazilian), Russian (more than 2000 articles), Polish, French, Danish and Chinese.
Such huge interest speaks to the fact that TWD became a worldwide cultural phenomenon that influences on consciousness of people over the world; especially in the USA and Europe (according to fans’ activities). This phenomenon may have some impact to estimation of significance of society for people, interrelationships with other individuals and personal grows.
The main idea of the article is to use methodology of economics and game theory for analysis of some aspects of post-apocalyptic movies by example of TV series TWD. Why is it important? In many situations authors create a new world with its own features, rules and social-economic relations. How deeply such worlds are depicted and how realistic are social-economic relationships? Interdisciplinary investigations may help give an answer to this question.
I see several aspects to apply such some unexpected methodology to movies’ analysis:
1. Economic background as plot’s element. Economic activity (purchases, production, consumption, exchange, etc.) is basic for human’s everyday practice but rapid changes in environmental situation (as usual as in genre zombie movies) have to impact on human behavior and activity. The main question is how would it influence?
2. Decision making process. Protagonists (survivors) are usually rapidly dropped into a new world with a new rules and reality, often with collapsed civilization and dramatically changed socio-economic relationships. In such situation responsibility for decisions is expanding with tremendously increasing price for choosing a wrong way. In these conditions the main question is how optimal do protagonists make their decisions.
3. Social movement and society organization after civilization reloading. Relationships between individuals into group, evolution such groups in democratic or authoritarian way, relationships between groups – it all things may be the objects of game theory applications.
4. Search and investigation parallels between post-apocalyptic plots and real life situation in economic area in the USA and Europe. It perhaps would help to understand and estimate movie’s influence on human behavior.
The main result of this investigation is a defining of key economic characteristics for genre of post-apocalyptic zombie-horror movies and evaluation of protagonists’ decision making process in game theory framework.

(you can see the full article and discuss it by clicking here)


Key words:   Interdisciplinary investigations, movies’ analysis, economics and game theory applications

Name:  Maxim Yenalyev

Academic title:   Postgraduate

Country:  Ukraine

University:   Petro Mohyla Black Sea State University


Leave a Reply