Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Our Brains Eat Zombies: A 7-Minute History of Zombie Films

by Steven S. Vrooman

I was part of TLU's inaugural 7-minute lecture series, SCHOLA, and I chose to try to squeeze the history of 358 zombie films from 1932 to 2014 into that time limit! I think it went well:

I used graphs to process the large set of data. In case you wanted more context for how I did my analysis, this blog post will sort through some of my process.

First, I had to find a good list of zombie films. I went with Wikipedia. Yep. Me. A professor. It turns out that Wikipedia is pretty good for things like pop culture lists. There are things I didn't like, so I made some edits. For example, ParaNorman is NOT a zombie movie.

Second, I went through the films in historical order and coded the films iteratively. In other words, I would add categories as a film would do something new, like alien zombies or fast zombies. Those counts produced the graphics in the video. There are plenty of other interesting things in the data coding that could not make it into the 7-minutes, so feel free to take a look.

The data.

Have fun, fellow zombie nerds!

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