For as long as I can remember, I have always been a fan of the macabre. Horror movies have always been my favorite genre. I love the idea of being frightened out of my wits and I suspect I’m not alone in that feeling. I’m not saying that I haven’t looked away or closed my eyes when the sacrificial lamb met their doom, I have some standards.
But, I still love the suspense, the obligatory run from the villain by the world’s clumsiest victim who can’t help falling down numerous times, then the final showdown where the evildoer meets their inevitable doom. The formula is predictable but satisfies the essence of a good storyline.
That’s probably why I’m a big fan of The Walking Dead. I haven’t missed an episode since it debuted in October 2010 on AMC. It follows the lives of a group of people who’ve banded together to form a protective community in order to survive what is essentially the Zombie Apocalypse. For me, the show is a perfect blend of unspeakable horror and one’s attempt to hold onto some semblance of humanity while trying to survive it.
Fortunately for me, the show films in the state that I live in. While I haven’t had the chance to meet any of its stars, I have found pretty much the next best thing: Atlanta Movie Tours! Located in the Castleberry Hill neighborhood of Atlanta, this company offers a 3 hour guided tour to scene locations depicted in various episodes of The Walking Dead. The Big Zombie tour is actually divided into two separate tours. The first tour covers all of the notable scenes that were featured in and around the Atlanta area. The second focuses on the more rural areas of Georgia – the cities of Senoia (aka Woodbury), Haralson, Grantville and Newnan.
The tour guides are very likable actors who have all played walkers on the mega-hit which happened to score 17.3 million viewers during its 5th season premiere on October 12, 2014. These ratings are unheard of for most network television shows, much less a ‘lowly’ cable series, so you can imagine that its popularity will continue to increase. In fact, a companion series is scheduled to air by 2016 with one of the writers from the Sons of Anarchy acting as the show runner.
The first Big Zombie tour started with a short walk down the street. There we stood in front of the Norfolk Southern Railway Building which was the scene where the gang had to leave a repugnant Merle Dixon handcuffed to a pipe on the rooftop in Season one. Our guide, Patrick, mentioned that when nearby residents heard the staged ‘gunshots’, cops and a swat team were quickly dispatched. Needless to say, no one was arrested.