I don’t generally record my dreams because they’re usually boring. Like the dream when I drove down a motorway one day and saw a national speed limit road sign but, the very next day, that road sign was not there.
Still with me? I told it was boring.
But every once in a while I have a night-time encounter which leaves such an impression, I awake excited and spend much of the day musing on the mad ramblings of my mind.
Once such time was last month and I scribbled down the following. Apologies for the ever-changing tense.
If you’re a fan of zombie films or TV programmes, this post may contain spoilers.
If you’re not a zombie fan, this post may contain nothing of interest.
Damn weird dream I had last night, 27/03/21:
I was watching Romero’s Night of the Living Dead, though it was the 1978 version. [To be clear, the original Night of the Living Dead was made in the sixties and, in 1978, Dawn of the Dead was released.]
I remember noticing a lot of parts that I had not seen before, some were just differences to the way zombies attacked, some were completely new scenes. One was Steven standing outside on the sloping entrance to an underground parking garage. There were many shots of families in cars, rushing injured loved ones to the hospital, unaware of the danger there were all in. (I think this is why I thought it was Night… even though it was in colour; the public did not yet know the truth about zombie bites.) All of these resulted in the zombie awakening and biting the closest family member – it was disturbing how many of these were children or babies.
But the zombies were different to any other Romero movie; their teeth were smaller and shaper and their mouths wider, resembling the gaping maw of a Muppet. (These facts made me believe that these zombies were actually humans transformed into aliens.)
At the end of the movie, we focus in on a beach. The sand is rippling with movement. Zooming in, we see it is covered with small squirming maggot-like creatures. They advance on the corpse of a young women and begin to engulf her. She reanimates – initially I thought she was a sleeping zombie who had been awoken by the creatures – but is eventually pulled apart by the things. [I saw the flesh of her finger being pulled away – a dream image which had obviously been informed by Gabriel and Aaron ripping the ‘sleeves’ from a walker in season 10C’s (episode ‘19’) One More.]
Upon reflection, I considered the maggot-things may have both caused the corpse to reanimate and been the author of her ultimate destruction. (This is probably an analogy of humans giving life to this planet and also making it a useless wasteland.)
As the credits rolled, we’re treated to an exclusive interview with George A. Romero. (He was sitting behind me in the hotel bedroom in which I was watching the film. I did say it was a weird dream.) By his age I knew this was the 1970s. He talked about how he had toyed with the idea of making a movie with zombies which were different to his usual fare. Because he was unsure of the reception this deviant zombie strain would receive, he decided to shoot two movies at the same time; so, while making what we would know as Dawn of the Dead, he also shot the above sequences. He told us he had made an entirely new movie, the one I was watching, but that it had never been released.
I then noticed, in the credits, there were two release versions of Dawn… I thought about asking him if this indicated the Muppet-mouthed version had actually been released, but remembered two versions of Dawn… had been released; the original 1978 version and the extended version in the nineties.
Damn weird dream.