By Amy Rachiele, M.Ed., Indie Author
Survival horror is consuming entertainment society. In a world where computers and electricity are a part of every facet of the human day, even making a simple cup of coffee involves a high-tech piece of equipment. The fascination with survival shows and video games, along with reality T.V. has upped the ante on our ability to face a primitive world.
The survival genre manifests a deep concern for our own ability to exist in a world that is free of technology and/or infested with an unknown we cannot control. Government, morality, or even ourselves are replaced with Maslow’s fundamental principles of needs, climbing only the first and second tier every day. This genre creates a sharp look into a savage existence in which the most fearful predators are other people.
The Walking Dead, The Last Ship, and Revolution are fictional television shows that are taking a step beyond man versus animal, like in Dual Survival, and raising the stakes to man versus man. Money, status, and leisure are replaced with a resurgence of a lost age, the dawn of man. The vast development of humans over thousands of years has changed incentives by fueling this new generation of primitive survivors with sagacity.
Knowledge is a key ingredient for traversing a foreign society that rises up from destruction. What never changes and can never be defeated are the innate qualities that rear their heads; greed, malice, and lust for power. These traits surface and complicate the most basic task of finding food.
The ultimate question that survival horror poses is, “Would you survive?” And that promotes supplemental questions of what you are willing to do, what ethics would or could you sacrifice, and what lengths would you go to? It is easy to ask these questions when not faced with the situation, and only looking at it through the fictional eyes of survival horror writers.