Survival of the Dead
is the sixth horror film in George A. Romero's Living Dead series which follows some characters who briefly appeared in Diary of the Dead
. Survival of the Dead
takes place in a desperate, nightmarish world where the dead walk the earth, relentlessly attacking the living. It is the story of Plum Island - a beautiful refuge whose isolation allows two powerful families to maintain a semblance of order in the wake of the zombie holocaust. But as the inhabitants slowly die off, the two clans become sharply divided: The O'Flynns believe that the undead must be destroyed without exception, while the Muldoons insist that afflicted loved ones be kept "alive" until a cure is found
. Into this situation wander a small group of National Guard troops who have decided to strike out on their own in an effort to survive.
This film contains examples of the following tropes:
- A Date with Rosie Palms: The single female in the group of Guard refugees shamelessly masturbates in front of her fellows.
- Because she is, as said in the movie, "Um, Sorry, I'm Gay", and isn't interested in offers from the team's men.
- A House Divided: More like An Island Divided. The Muldoon vs. O'Flynn shootout at the end, zombies milling about and eating people during. And in the final shot, they're still trying to shoot each other as zombies with empty pistols.
- All Girls Like Ponies: Jane, even as a zombie! She really likes the taste, too.
- Boom, Headshot: Zombie movie, so of course. Props to a point-blank rifle shot that obliterates an entire head down to the lower jaw.
- Bury Your Gays: Averted. The sole gay character survives 'til the end.
- Chekhov's Gun: Crockett's grenade, O'Flynn's Derringer.
- Conspicuous CGI: A few of the zombie deaths, particularly the flare gun and the fire extinguisher.
- Continuity Nod: The troopers whose story this is are the ones who stuck up the bloggers in Diary of the Dead.
- Expy: Tomboy is reminiscent of Rocky from Romero's little-seen KNIGHRIDERS: an out-and-proud lesbian who's as tough as (if not tougher than) her straight/male cohorts.
- Fanservice: Tomboy masturbating out in the open. Could be Fetish Fuel too.
- Feuding Families: The O'Flynns and the Muldoons. The subject of how to deal with the zombies is just latest round. When O'Flynn makes a half-assed attempt to bury the hatchet, Muldoon shoots him in the back. O'Flynn shoots him in retaliation and the feud even survives undeath.
- Gorn: Oh yeah, big time. Special commendations to a fire extinguisher blowing up a zombie's head, a flare gun lighting a zombie's head on fire, a zombie ripping some dude's scalp off. Oh, and the poor horse being devoured. Ugh.
- Gratuitous Spanish: Cisco, practically every other line.
- Have I Mentioned I am Gay?: Tomboy
- Horror Hunger: Subverted, as Seamus Muldoon aims to stem the zombies from eating humans, and have them move onto other sources of food...and it works, but not before it's too late.
- I Cannot Self-Terminate: The soon-to-be zombie Cisco, for the hope he does not end up in hell. He asks Tomboy to do the deed, and she complies.
- Latin Lover: Cisco seems to consider himself one.
- Only a Flesh Wound: Crockett is shot in the shoulder, with the only effect being that he grimaces, then once briefly passes out. Other than that, he keeps using the arm like normal.
- Oral Fixation: Sgt. "Nicotine" Crockett and his cigarettes.
- P.O.V. Sequel: to Diary of the Dead.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Crockett and his merry band of National Guard deserters, ditching their outpost and striking out on their own in the Zombie Apocalypse.
- Taking the Bullet: Crockett for the Kenny, despite the former claiming he'd never do such a thing earlier in the film. Minor inversion as both get hit, and the latter dies.
- The Unfavourite: Janet thinks she is but her father says she's not.
- Theme Twin Naming: Janet and Jane.
- Too Dumb to Live: Janet, trying to connect to her zombified twin sister at hand-biting range. She gets bitten for her troubles.
- Twofer Token Minority: Tomboy as a Black Lesbian is a threefer.
- Undead Child: At the start of the film.
- Zombie Advocate: The Muldoons believe that zombism is a disease that can be cured, or at least that the walking dead can be "re-educated" not to feed on human flesh.
- Zombie Apocalypse: Naturally. And with all appropriate sub-tropes:
- Kill It with Fire: Nicotine uses a flare to light up a zombie then uses its flaming head to light his cigarette.
- Not Using the Zed Word: Played straight as the slang "deadheads" becomes popular, but also subverted as people do use the word "zombie".
- Zombie Gait: The slow kind.
- Zombie Infectee: kept alive by the Muldoons. And in Cisco's case, complete with denial... but subverted with the sensible response.