The first episode of Tales of The Walking Dead ended with Joe’s (Terry Crews) would-be friend Sandra (Kersti Bryan) going crazy. But, you don’t need to “go” crazy if you already ARE.
Much of the story of the first episode of Tales of The Walking Dead revolved around our protagonist, Joe, and his quest to meet with a lady friend he’d met in a chatroom for doomsday preppers, named Sandra (Screen name “USHLDBSCRD” — “You Should Be Scared”), who lived in Michigan.
Unfortunately, despite an initial warm welcome, Joe’s time at Sandra’s bunker quickly turned sour as she drugged him, bound his hands, and, whilst giving a mildly paranoid rant, began trying to slice him to ribbons with a knife. As Sandra explained, the trauma of hearing her neighbors cry for help (Help which she couldn’t provide) during the outbreak, combined with being attacked by a man who’d made his way into her bunker, had driven her to a state of violent paranoia Joe found her in, with her having, apparently, devolved into a serial killer, complete with a collection of watches taken from the people she’d murdered.
There’s a problem here, though: Her story and behavior don’t make that much sense.
Tales Of The Walking Dead theory
Sandra was ALWAYS a crazed serial killer.
Okay, let’s look at what we know about Sandra’s backstory after the outbreak. According to her, some of her neighbors came to her house, begging for help, which she couldn’t give. Obviously, those neighbors knew she was a prepper and figured she would be someone safe to hole up with as everything went sideways. This makes sense.
On the other side of the coin, assuming Sandra’s innocent, her not letting her neighbors into her bunker could be attributed to her being unsure if they were infected or how long it would be before they turned if they were. This also makes sense.
We also know that, according to Sandra, a man broke in and attacked her, leading her to have to kill him in self-defense. Okay, she wouldn’t have been the first person in a zombie apocalypse to do that.
Wait. Both Joe and Evie only got into Sandra’s bunker because she let them in, so…how, exactly, did her attacker get in if A) People only could get access to the bunker by her letting them in, and B) She wouldn’t open the door for people. One of these can’t be true. You can’t have a doomsday bunker be something that people looking for help can’t get into but also something that attackers can get into. Those contradict each other. In fact, if attackers, and not potential allies, can get inside your doomsday bunker, then…it’s a pretty shit bunker.
That aside, let’s look at what else we’d learned about Sandra’s life since the outbreak began. We learned that, after killing her attacker, Sandra found herself enthralled with his glimmering watch and so kept it as a trophy, along with eleven other watches kept inside a glass case, implying that she’d killed at least twelve people up to that point. This is the behavior of a serial killer.
Now, do I think that a person could become traumatized by hearing their neighbors screaming for help outside as they get torn apart by zombies? Yes.
Do I think that a person could become paranoid in a zombie apocalypse, either because of seeing people attacking other survivors or because of being attacked by another survivor? Yes.
Do I think that a person could even become a violent killer in a zombie apocalypse because of these other factors? Yes.
But, do I think that someone could become the kind of person that will start collecting trophies of people that they kill because of the aforementioned factors? NO.
I don’t believe for a minute that Sandra’s pattern of murder, followed by collecting trophies from those murders, is something that just appears out of the blue because the world’s gone to Hell. No, that is a long-standing pathology that almost certainly predates the apocalypse. I mean, think about how she got Joe. She didn’t just attack right out of the gate: She drugged him with a weed-laced brownie to disorient him and slow him down. She tried the same thing with Evie. This is premeditated. This is someone carrying out a plan they’ve done many times before, not something a person does on a whim or because of a streak of violent paranoia, but the act of a heartless predator.
There’s something else that bothers me, something else we learned about Sandra before the outbreak, which takes on a much more sinister tone in light of what we’ve learned about her since the outbreak. Sandra’s husband died at some point before everything happened, and in one of her earlier correspondence with Joe before that, she mentions how her husband would leave her if he knew she upgraded to a “platinum” bunker.
Well, obviously, she did upgrade to a platinum bunker (She stated it not as a hypothetical upgrade, but as something she’d already done), and her husband died under undefined circumstances; With Sandra’s violent tendencies on display during her meeting with Joe, is it so far-fetched to assume that her husband found out about the bunker upgrade, decided to leave, and then…died before he could get a chance? Maybe he discovered something that revealed Sandra’s desire for an isolated, underground bunker had to do with more than just doomsday prepping. More and more, that is what I’m thinking.
In conclusion, I think it’s safe to say that Sandra’s turn to evil was not something brought about by the zombie apocalypse. Some of her other behavior might be, but I think the dual personality, the lying, and, most importantly, the psychopathic killing are all things she’d been doing long before the dead started walking and maybe, even served as the source for her interest in doomsday prepping in the first place.
But, what do you guys think? Do you think that Sandra’s violent behavior was the result of the trauma she experienced once the outbreak hit? Or, do you think she’d always been a violent crazy? Do you think that Sandra’s husband died of natural causes or that he was just one in a long line of victims? Let me know. I’m curious to hear. If you enjoyed this and want to learn how to stay alive in a zombie apocalypse, why not pick up a copy of my book, The Rules: A Guide To Surviving The Zombie Apocalypse! You can also get it at Amazon here, on iTunes here!