Tallahassee

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?

Woody Harrelson as Tallahassee
Woody Harrelson as Tallahassee

If you’re a new reader to Wednesday Warriors, this series is not about stuffy interpretations of male movie protagonists. No, it’s about having fun! And what better way to have fun than to shine the spotlight on Tallahassee, the lone wolf, undead Zombieland killer?

Let’s dispense with the pleasantries and go for the jugular. When we first meet Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson), he’s not your typical zombie exterminator. He likes Twinkies. He’ll do anything to find Twinkies. And his idea of a party is feasting on a plateful of Twinkies. Did I say he likes Twinkies?

Zombieland
Zombieland

How’s that for a good start? Oh, and he’s real good with a shotgun. And a Louisville Slugger. And hedge clippers. A little off the top is what he always says to an oncoming zombie threat.

To his benefit, Tallahassee does like kids. On his journey to find the last Twinkie, he has travelling with him an insecure teenager called Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg) trying to reach Ohio, Wichita (Emma Stone), a kick-ass chick whose attitude is more suitable with a ship full of sailors, and her sister Little Rock (Abigail Breslin), who is good at taking advantage of other people’s good nature.

Jesse Eisenberg and Woody Harrelson
Jesse Eisenberg and Woody Harrelson

Also, when it comes to working with others, Tallahassee has only one rule: stay out of the way. He has a method to dealing with the undead that may not be as pleasant as one might expect. He actually has fun killing them. In one instance, he rings the dinner bell to attract the wrong kind of attention. But it is nothing that a shotgun can’t cure.

Then there’s the matter of his anger. He doesn’t have any. He’s one of the most laid-back, zombie-fighting characters on screen. When confronted by a huge horde, he’s smiling through the whole thing wondering if he could get a selfie with one of them before he bashes their brains with a two-by-four.

Enjoy the little things.
Enjoy the little things.

Yet, if anyone thinks Tallahassee lacks compassion, let’s not forget he is the one who keeps falling for Wichita and Little Rock’s dirty tricks to surrender his gun. He has to help. His nature dictates he has to aid those less able to help themselves. He has that compassion running through him he’d rather not let anyone else see, but he hasn’t a choice when the situation calls for it. He cares about others, even if he shows otherwise.

And you know what? I like Tallahassee. He’s a courageous character. There’s no lying with him. Either you’re for him or against him. None of that wishy-washy “oh, I don’t think we should be doing this” stuff with him. He takes his hits and keeps moving forward.

Ranger Martin and the Zombie Apocalypse

Have you seen Zombieland? What do you think of Tallahassee?

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14 thoughts on “Tallahassee

  1. how could you not mention the fact that he lost his son? for me it was an explanation of why he is so laid back and carefree because he’s already lost the one thing that meant the most to him in this world… and instead of going all suicidal, which attracting the zombies for the hell of it may appear to be suicidal, he’s instead just not caring either way… he’s going to fight for his life but it’s in a way that says if he does die then whatever… but I think it’s also that father in him that leads him to take the others under his wing… in a way giving him a new purpose in this zombie filled world…

  2. This is a great post. I’ll take your word for it that this is a great movie…..not going to watch it any time soon though :/

    Woody Harrelson has quite a range of acting skills and I have enjoyed most of the movies he has been in.
    Leslie

  3. Twinkies, to Tallahassee, were a reminder of the time before the zombie apocalypse, when life was still full of problems, but the problems didn’t include fending off hordes mobile, putrid undead.
    & his reaction at meeting Bill Murray – PRICELESS ! Pure HERO WORSHIP. 🙂

  4. Loved that movie and character. That ending at the amusement park felt so well-deserved. Think I’ll watch this over the weekend. Part of me wants a sequel, but I’m sure it wouldn’t live up to the original. Fully agree with Ranger Martin and that quote too.

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