The original article can be found here.
By Matt and John Yuan
Wired.com guest bloggers
Zombieland is the latest instructional video to address the very real issue of how to survive and prosper beyond the inevitable rise of The Dead.
28 Days Later taught us to fear PETA’s wrath. Land of the Dead taught us to hate the rich. Dawn of the Dead taught us that malls are where you should go if you really want to die.
Thankfully, Zombieland doesn’t waste our time with non-zombie-related life lessons. In a word, this movie’s lesson is “firepower.”
Zombieland’s main ghoul dispatcher Tallahassee (played by Woody Harrelson) says: “God bless rednecks.”
We say: “God bless director Ruben Fleischer and writers Paul Wernick and Rhett Reese for creating the perfect visual aid on how to use a wide variety of weapons against the flesh-eating hordes.”
In case you don’t want to put yourself in the vulnerable, high-population-density situation of a theater when Zombieland opens Friday, we’ve compiled a list of weapons featured in the movie and some killer zombie-dispatching tips for you to peruse from the safety of your home.
1. H&K MP-7
The Heckler & Koch MP7 is a German-made submachine gun. Designed as a “personal defense weapon,” this gun proves that a high rate of fire combined with small bullets is about as helpful as a razor blade in a sword fight.
Advantages: High rate of fire, large ammo capacity.
Disadvantages: This gun’s small bullets are pretty much only good for livening up things at parties, weddings or any other event where you don’t want anyone to get hurt.
Tips: You’re hunting zombies, not goldfish. Get something that spits out bigger bullets.
The AK-47 is the quintessential “assault rifle” due to its durability, capacity and relatively high rate of fire. While it may have arrived on the scene too late to kill Nazi scumbags, the AK-47 is just in time for re-killing the undead.
Advantages: Effective, reliable.
Disadvantages: Other shell-shocked survivors may panic at the sight of someone carrying this distinctly Communist weapon, so be careful: “Go Wolverines,” are a couple of crappy last words to ring in your ears right before some kid puts holes in your liver.
Tips: Forget the AK and buy American — like Glock, Sig or Benelli!
3. Coach gun
Dating back more than a century, the coach gun, or double-barreled shotgun, was designed for those pesky moments when a cowboy came across more than one bad guy. Its simple design means it will never jam, misfeed or tell you you’re a lousy lover.
Advantages: Looks cool.
Disadvantages: After two shots, it’s nothing more than an expensive club.
Tips: Get a pump-action shotgun.
4. Mare’s Leg (Tallahassee’s chosen gun)
This gun is simply a lever-action rifle chambered for .44-40 or .45 Colt rounds that has suffered an extreme circumcision. Despite its reduced size, the Mare’s Leg still has all the zombie-killing power you could possibly need.
Advantages: Uses thumb-size bullets to create fist-size holes.
Disadvantages: Ammo is uncommon outside of big-mustache country.
Tips: If your horse breaks her leg, you’ve got a spare.
5. Toilet tank lid
Typically crafted of porcelain, these items come in many shapes and sizes. Try one out for size and fit before committing to a purchase.
Advantages: Doesn’t run out of ammo.
Disadvantages: Leaves toilet tank open to pests.
Tips: Porcelain is sharp when it breaks, so watch out for nasty cuts — especially if the zombie virus is fluid-borne.
This instrument was first brought over on The Mayflower. Its dulcet tones proved to be so popular with the Pilgrims that they immediately exiled its owner, who then discovered the banjo’s worth as a fighting implement against the equally hostile, music-hating natives.
Advantages: Serves as cultural camouflage in the Appalachians.
Disadvantages: You will never play it as well as Steve Martin.
Tips: We’re not music critics, so you’re on your own with this one.
7. Aluminum baseball bat
Originally invented by Amish convicts to combat rival prison gangs, it wasn’t until the invention of baseball that the so-called “Amish batte” finally found a nonviolent role in the world.
Advantages: Handy, ubiquitous, easily maintained.
Disadvantages: Easily mistaken for a softball bat, which will make you look girly as you face off against waves of ghouls.
Tips: Buff with sandpaper so it catches the “ball” better.
8. Hedge clippers
Essentially giant scissors, these things may look menacing, but they aren’t really much of a terror against anything that isn’t just sitting there photosynthesizing.
Advantages: If your zombie-defense fort has topiary animals, you can use this weapon to ensure the hedges don’t look shabby.
Disadvantages: If you can’t hack through a Thanksgiving turkey in one swipe with one of these, chances are you can’t decapitate a zombie before it pulls you inside-out, either.
Tips: Get a pump-action shotgun.
9. Grand piano
It’s got 88 keys, three pedals and weighs about as much as a small sedan. So unless you’ve got Jeff Bridges and Michelle Pfeiffer in the wings ready to put this white elephant to good use, we suggest you leave it in the showroom.
Advantages: Not many.
Tips: If you have enough time to prep a grand piano to squash a single lousy zombie in a one-off ambush, we’ve got nothing to say to you, you showboating freak.
Originally designed by John Browning, the M1911A1 is a .45 caliber semi-automatic handgun. Adored by soldiers and Marines, even Ghandi was supposed to have said, “Hot damn, this gun sure is cool!”
Advantages: Touching one will give you balls the size of Charles Bronson’s head.
Disadvantages: Touching one will cause you to burst into flame … if you’re some kind of freedom-hating anarchist.
Tips: Customized grips with pictures of skulls, lightning bolts and/or eagles improve the accuracy of these things by about a million percent.
11. Pump-action shotgun
Named for the mechanism by which one loads and fires it, this shotgun makes a noise that has been scientifically proven to loosen sphincters. And that’s before you fire it!
Advantages: Whomp-ass firepower that hasn’t been seen on Earth since Zeus took a powder.
Disadvantages: Operating it leaves you vulnerable to masturbation jokes.
Tips: One is good. Two are better. A pair worn on your back like the wings of an avenging angel is perfect!
12. Tremendous mallet
Although its origins have been lost to the mists of time, the tremendous mallet first saw widespread popularity when Bugs Bunny first used one to give Daffy Duck cranio-facial deformities.
Advantages: It worked for Mel Gibson in Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome.
Disadvantages: Yeah, big man, beating on some midget’s man-child. Proud of yourself yet?
Tips: If you’re going to throw your back out, may as well do it by having sex for 19 hours straight.
13. Rock hammers
Not to be confused with tremendous mallets, these things are faster to wield and don’t leave you exhausted after two or three swings. Used for busting rocks, they can easily be repurposed to bust zombies.
Advantages: Combines all the best qualities of the 1911A1 and the pump-action shotgun.
Disadvantages: None. Anyone who suggests otherwise eats babies.
Tips: Oh, OK, these weapons do not make an appearance in Zombieland, but damn it, they were so darned effective in Streets of Fire — anything that works well in that movie is bound to work well anywhere!
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
Having been zombie survivalists since the age of 8, when their mother bought them Dawn of the Dead, twins Matt and John Yuan turned their passion for firearms and anti-ghoul geekery into a ticket to Hollywood. They played mall cops in the black comedy Observe and Report and serve as unofficial spokesmen for indie comics house Boom Studios.
The Yuans are happy and relieved to see Zombieland coming to theaters. The movie’s zombie-killing lessons will come in handy when everyone you ever knew or loved is shuffling around eating carrion while you remain safe and sound in your zombie-proof bunker drinking reconstituted urine.