In Zombieland, Columbus has a set of rules that he put together in order to survive the zombie apocalypse. The movie, directed by Ruben Fleischer (Venom), first went into development in 2005 before the final script was written. Zombieland followed a group of four people who band together for a cross-country road trip during a zombie epidemic (a strain of mad cow disease mutated, resulting in a massive outbreak). Those affected across the United States started to attack and kill the innocent.
Zombieland starred Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone, and Abigail Breslin as the core leads. Harrelson and Eisenberg played Tallahassee and Columbus, two survivors that eventually run into a pair of sisters, Wichita (Stone) and Little Rock (Breslin). Rather than get attached to people, it was best to go by nicknames or in their case, the locations that they identified with.
From the start of the movie, Columbus is shown to be following a set of rules he's created for living in a zombie-ravaged land. Here are all 33 of Columbus' rules to surviving the apocalypse revealed in Zombieland:
Rule #1: Cardio
Rule #2: The Double Tap
Rule #3: Beware of Bathrooms
Rule #4: Wear Your Seatbelt
Rule #5: No Attachments
Rule #6: Cast Iron Skillet
Rule #7: Travel Light
Rule #8: Get a Kickass Partner
Rule #9: With Your Bare Hands
Rule #10: Don’t Swing Low
Rule #11: Use Your Feet
Rule #12: Bounty Paper Towels
Rule #13: Shake It Off
Rule #14: Always Carry a Change of Underwear
Rule #15: Bowling Ball
Rule #16: Opportunity Knocks
Rule #17: (Don’t) Be a Hero
Rule #18: Limber Up
Rule #19: Break It Up
Rule #20: It’s a Marathon, Not a Sprint
Rule #21: Avoid Strip Clubs
Rule #22: When in Doubt, Know Your Way Out
Rule #23: Ziploc
Rule #24: Use Your Thumbs
Rule #25: Shoot First
Rule #26: A Little Sunscreen Never Hurt Anybody
Rule #27: Incoming!
Rule #28: Double-knot Your Shoes
Rule #29: The Buddy System
Rule #30: Pack Your Stain Stick
Rule #31: Check the Back Seat
Rule #32: Enjoy the Little Things
Rule #33: Swiss Army Knife
Columbus put the rules together as he went along his journey with Tallahassee. Some of the rules are more self-explanatory than others. For example, the first one, cardio, was included to point out that the faster you are, the better chance you have at running away to safety. It's also important to not be a hero, as suggested with rule #17 as showing off could backfire. Many of the rules aren't just aimed at fighting zombies, some explain the necessities for survival supplies and how to keep up with hygiene.
Arguably the most important rule would be #2, the double tap, which also happened to influence the title of the Zombieland sequel, releasing this October. Columbus instituted the double tap rule as a way to remind himself to never assume a zombie wass dead. A second shot to the zombie's head was always required.
Only a handful of Columbus' rules were displayed in Zombieland, with the others shared through promotional materials and extra content. The young man certainly didn't seem like the type who was capable of living through an invasion of flesh-eating zombies but his rules paved the way to his survival. Columbus will have undoubtedly added a new set of rules to his list since the events of the first movie in Zombieland: Double Tap.
- Zombieland: Double Tap/Zombieland 2 (2019) release date: Oct 18, 2019