Zombie Friendly Entertainment

Zombies at Zombieland in San Francisco

Zombies at Zombieland in San Francisco (Photo credit: Steve Rhodes)


Let’s be honest, when you’re responsible for a large number of children that are in the preteen and teenage years, it’s hard to entertain them. Pickleball, kick the can, red light/green light, and whack a mole can all be useful tools to keep the zombie children entertained, but they also need activities that are more sedentary. This poses quite a dilemma as, contrary to what you might believe, zombie children are not welcome in most houses of worship (the moaning interferes with the choir), stage productions (the tight quarters of most theaters can lead to accidental bites), or at the mall (which surprises me the most. I mean, have you been to the mall? There are some seriously strange people hanging out there.)  We truly started to despair that we would ever find the right venue.


Our prayers were answered, though, when we decided to take the z kids to the local movie house. Extensive research prior to our first trip identified an area of the movie theater that is practically never used, the first two rows. Sitting in those rows, for most people, is a painful exercise in craning one’s head to find the right position to view the movie from.  The majority of moviegoers preferentially seek seats in the back two-thirds of the cinema, leaving a large swath of  empty seats with a healthy buffer zone.


This seemed perfect as a place to park our z kids and allow them to enjoy fine entertainment. After a few test runs, we made our first large-scale trip this weekend. Breaking Dawn Part Two, was playing at the local cinema and we waited until the second week of its run and chose a bargain matinée, hoping the theatre would be mostly empty. Once we verified the desired seating section was available, we gathered up our twelve and up z kids, and entered the movie theater.


The other desirable feature of the theater is that everything happens in orderly lines. Want to buy a ticket? Get in line.  Delicious popcorn and oversized soda? Another line. Enter the theater? Line up and head up the ramp. The set up guaranteed that there would be no inadvertent fraternization between our kids and the general public. It worked like a charm.


Once inside the darkened theater, the children were mesmerized by the figures and bright lights on the screen. They oohed when the huge werewolves appeared and ahhed when the vampires walked superfast. Their relentless moaning was drowned out by the soundtrack and their slightly offensive smell completely covered up by the aroma of popcorn butter. It was perfection!


Now some may believe that Breaking Dawn Part 2 isn’t suitable fare for preteen and teenagers, but we will beg to differ. The z kids enjoyed the wooden acting of Kristen Stewart, at times seeming to believe she was a zombie, too. Robert Pattinson charmed the children with his alabaster white face that lit up the screen like a moon. Though we worried the z kids would be traumatized by the scenes in which the heads of characters were ripped off their bodies, our fears turned out to be unfounded. Instead they appeared entranced.


We plan more movie theatre field trips in the future and if you should happen to see us at your local cineplex, we’d love to tell you to come over and say hi, but, for all our sakes, keep your distance. It’s safer that way.


Remember, we’re trained professionals and we feed the zombie children so you won’t have to.




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