Will McIntosh. Dancing with Death in the Land of Nod. (The End is Nigh)

endisnighThe only thing I don’t like about the story is the title, which references the fact that the apocalypse in this story in the apocalypse-themed anthology is one where people are struck by a virus that causes them to instantly vegetate, immobile, save for the nodding head, but otherwise alert, although unable to communicate or move.

There’s a touch of The Last Picture Show, as there’s a quite vivid and memorable setting to open (and close) the story – a drive-in movie theater. Johnny’s elderly dad bought it not long ago, but it’s proven to be a bust, especially so now that people are staying in to avoid getting infected. Worse still, his dad has dementia. Could it get any worse.

Of course it can, and as neighbours fall victim, it’s left to Johnny and another neighbour to look after them, and the closing scene it at once heart-breaking and affirming.

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