Wichita

Zombieland is a grim film. It provides a commentary on society’s ills, and demonstrates humanity’s failure to manage an apocalypse of grand proportions contrasted against civilized utopian values. Cinematic enthusiasts do well by taking this movie seriously. Queue the vinyl record scratch. Yeah, right. Are you sure, we’re talking about the same movie here?

Emma Stone as Wichita
Emma Stone as Wichita

If you’re a new reader to Women Who Wow Wednesday, this series is not about stuffy interpretations of female movie protagonists. No, it’s about having fun! And what better way to have fun than to shine the spotlight on Wichita, the teenage Zombieland killer?

Let’s dispense with the pleasantries and go for the jugular. When we first meet Wichita (Emma Stone), she’s not a very nice human being. She lies, she tricks others into giving up what’s theirs, and she’s particularly sneaky. In fact, if I were a person of vulgar persuasion, I’d describe her as a female dog. But I’m not going to do that. I’d rather focus on the positive aspects of her personality than tear her down a few sizes.

How’s that for a rough start? So far, she doesn’t possess that many redeeming qualities to cry home about. There’s gotta be something that can spark an interest in appreciating why anyone would keep her around.

Wichita's Mossberg 500 shotgun
Wichita’s Mossberg 500 shotgun

To her benefit, Wichita does like guns, I suppose. She sports a Mossberg 500 shotgun with rear and forward pistol grip, and side-saddle shell holder, which she utilizes throughout the entire movie. Her backup is a Walther PPK pistol. She uses it to threaten Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson), a Twinkie-loving zombie-slayer, only after he threatens her sister Little Rock (Abigail Breslin) first.

What’s that say about Wichita if she doesn’t want to use any other gun other than the one she has? Yeah, she suffers serious trust issues. That’s what I thought too. However, I would add she’s faithful. Her commitment to one gun provides as an example that once she does trust someone, she’ll do anything to protect them. Even if it means losing her life while doing so. I guess she possesses some redeeming qualities after all.

Then there’s the matter of Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg). He’s always been the outsider. Never one appreciated except for when he gave Wichita his shotgun. They become close. She confides in him about knowing the rumor that Los Angeles being zombie-free is bogus. She keeps up appearances for her sister’s sake. He admires her and they become good friends.

Columbus realizes Wichita had to lie in the beginning to protect her sister. She didn’t know Tallahassee or Columbus. She had to trick them into giving up their firearms because if she didn’t, in her mind, who knows what would have happened. And if she wasn’t sneaky, how would she have known who the real Columbus was? That’s her side of it, anyway. Eventually she does reveal her real name to him.

You know what? I like Wichita. She’s solid. There’s no wavering with her. Either you’re for her or against her. None of that wishy-washy “oh, I broke a nail” stuff with her. She takes her hits and keeps going forward.

Have you seen Zombieland? What do you think of Wichita? Was it necessary she lie, cheat and steal to get her way?

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18 thoughts on “Wichita

  1. Good movie. Love the Bill Murray cameo in it. Wichita is a tough survivor, which is what you need to be in that scenario otherwise you’re zombie meat. I can see why she’d stick to one gun – last thing you’d want when the living dead are closing in is an unreliable firearm.

  2. I definitely loved everything about Zombieland; the humor, the actors, the floating text graphics and especially how there was a love story in the midst of all the gross zombies. Great idea with Women Who Wow, it’s not just pics of hot naked chicks who are dumb as a rock but it’s about women who kick ass. Love it!

  3. I love zombieland, i like wichita, but i can sure use a twinkie, lol, oh but they went out if business. Bummer

  4. Top 3 zombie movies for my personal lists!
    Emma Stone is amazing in all her roles, and this is just another chock on the board.
    Great in depth character review,

    I’m tempered for the series, but it’s zombies, I’ll give it a shot (see what I did there?)

    Great as always, a blog to aspire to be like.

  5. Women Who Wow Wednesday is a great weekly column. It reminds me of great movies I watched and should watch them again, because it throws a different light on women protagonists. Therefore I never miss it and I also started reading your older posts from this category.

  6. I felt that Wichita was more than a standard straight character. The movie Zombieland seemed, to me, to have several subtle subjects it wanted to address. Wichita seemed to me to be the symbolic of the paranoia people experience covering a massive global disaster; that nobody can be trusted and everyone should be considered closely at the end of a gun. Interestingly, she never encounters the marauding evil human bent on killing more people than the zombies. The movie seems to be suggesting that instead of hiding from each other and fighting amongst ourselves, the best way to survive a global disaster is to rely on each other. Or I might be dragging my baggage into the movie. 😛

  7. Zombieland is funny as hell. LOL!! That one scene with a well-known comedian (sshh, I won’t spoil it) had me crying. And the rules? I must admit, I would be a gonna because my cardio is shot all to hell. Wichita is a fun character and Emma Stone did a great job of playing her. Although zombies are suppose to be terrifying, this movie made them somewhat fun. I also heard that Amazon is doing a series on it. Hmmm, I wonder if that will be any good.As usual, keep this fearless women coming. Love it!!!

  8. Mega fan of Zombieland and even more of Emma Stone. She’s an awesome actress! Zombieland is all about survival and as much as taking care of yourself is hard enough she even has her sister so she has to toughen up. If it means that this is the way she does it to strangers, then its alright. But she did soften up a little once she knew and could trust the others a little more. I think thats the positive of her personality.

  9. Zombieland is one othe two zombie movies (other than Shaun of the dead) that has really appealed to me. I believe all 4 characters made the movie awesome. Am a big Tallahassee fan especially when he brought down and we found about his son. Despite how serious her character was, you had to chuckle when she laughed at Bill Murray comical demise. I think a movie series would be a bad bad bad idea. We already have walking dead. We dont need another zombie series. Now a sequel would be sexy……

  10. Zombieland was a welcome relief from the stereotypical Zombie features a couple years ago. The comedy of the film and the faithfulness to the zombie genre were both incredibly powerful – I especially loved how at the end, Columbus had to face both his greatest fears in one – a clown, who was a zombie. I still laugh at that! Anyway, Wichita probably didn’t need to steal and cheat to succeed in the post-apocalyptic world of zombieland, however, very few people could have pulled off such villainous actions like she did – and still remain a lovable character for it.

  11. Love that movie. Nervous about the rumored television series. I thought all of the characters were great and never noticed Wichita’s irredeemable debut. I took her as a pure survivor, so her actions made more sense to me than Tallahassee’s search for Twinkies. She struck me as the standard zombie movie character, which helped cement the more comical, non-standard behavior of the others. She’s basically the serious straight man of the group. Without Wichita, I don’t think the movie would have had the same comical impact or made as much sense as it did.

  12. I really like Wichita and that’s not just my inner Emma Stone fan talking. I thought she was a great character, not as developed as the two male leads, but still she was interesting and fun to watch.

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