Thoughts on The Common Sense Resistance

Monday 11th November 2013, 12:12am

Let me start by saying I’m not sure what the devil the Common Sense Resistance is, or is going to be. In the Information Age, that’s actually a good thing.

Sometimes I think it might be a political party. Sometimes I think it might be an online community, or a movement. But one thing I have always thought was that it would make a great name for a movie, or better yet, a series.

Back again to story, for me – always to story, now. So what’s hot in the way of stories? The post-Apocalytic future. It's off the charts: The Walking Dead, Nazi zombies, zombies underground, zombies underwater, zombies in space, zombies in Britain – when there are Zombies in Toronto you will know we have saturated the market.

Night of the Living Dead, The Omega Man, Mad Max, Night of the Comet, Terminator, 12 Monkeys, Deep Impact, The Stand, Waterworld, 2012, 28 Days Later, Children of Men, The Day After Tomorrow, Resident Evil, I am Legend, The Road, WALL-E, War of the Worlds, Watchmen, The Book of Eli, Pacific Rim, Battle:LA, Contagion, Oblivion, After Earth, Hunger Games and World War Z…

Why? Why especially is this so popular among young people? When I was a kid it was Apollo Missions and Star Trek: the future was bright, optimistic and unlimited. Why now is there nothing like that out there? Why is it all ruin and savagery?

When I was looking for the image above I saw one (and I can’t find it again) that said, more or less, that when the culture no longer provides adventure, the only adventure is to destroy the culture.

I don’t know who wrote that. I’d be delighted to credit them if I did.

Because I think that is it exactly: zombies give us a chance to kill without mercy. And it provides us, especially teenagers, a chance to vicariously ask ourselves the question that those who go into combat on our behalf do not have to speculate on: namely, how would I do? Could I handle it? What if all I had was an axe?

That’s what’s hot. And as the real-world spins towards economic ruin, some of us adults are starting to wonder if this may not be, more or less, what is in store for us: nothing so dramatic as a nuclear war, even… just the end of the belief in small pieces of paper with pictures of dead guys on them that can be exchanged for a can of peaches, let’s say. Hundreds of millions of people with nothing to exchange for food.

That scares the living daylights out me, frankly, and I know it does the same for a lot of you. But this gives me a really great story idea, and it may not be too late to implement it.

I want to reach young people. But even hip videos are still videos. They’re not movies.

Aurora combines space adventure with imminent political collapse. Big Bat Problems is even closer to the mark: individuals with AR-15’s and Brookstone recon probes fighting a faceless, out-of-control police state – and also aliens that look like big bats.

But they both take a lot of time and money. So let me tell you what I want to do NOW.

I want to do a web series called THE COMMON SENSE RESISTANCE. I want it to be set in an apocalyptic future. I want it to be a series of very short messages – two minutes, tops – sent via pirate signal into the information net. I want it to be about people who can fix things and be independent on the run from people that want to control people. I want them to be young, outnumbered, scared, deadly, capable, smart and cunning. I want them to live off the grid, in abandoned factories, and sewers, and crawl through the rubble trying to put the pieces back together… and I want those common-sense messages to have life-or-death stakes; where people literally risk and often lose their lives getting out information on Laffer curves and The Unseen Hand and private property and individual rights in a world where all these things have vanished and are not likely to come back.

I want the Common Sense Resistance to be the story of young people flipping the bird to the big-state, all-seeing, all-powerful Big Brother.

I also think that this is the kind of thing that could also quickly turn into user-submitted content. Nothing would make me happier than having other people contribute threads to this story, because these kinds of things are easy to make.

What do you think?