Never mind the zombies, what we should all really be worried about is the proper use of emergency contraception on television. Or at least that’s what the ACLU is worried about; an outcry over the use of the “morning after” pill to abort a pregnancy on The Walking Dead has brought producers forward to remind viewers that getting your medical information from zombie dramas is really not highly recommended.
In last Sunday’s episode of The Walking Dead, Lori found out she was pregnant and tossed back a handful of the so called “morning after pill”, an emergency contraceptive that is designed to prevent a pregnancy from occurring when taken in the days following unprotected sex. The character then proceeded to throw them up – apparently she wasn’t quite sure whether or not becoming a new mommy in a world full of zombies was a good idea. But her motherhood dilemma brought the episode under fire for another reason: the ACLU is concerned about the misuse of the drug:
"There is considerable confusion about the difference between medication abortion and emergency contraception, and it was distressing to see this misunderstanding further spread by a show like The Walking Dead.. Aren’t they supposed to have fact checkers to catch this kind of thing?”
Yes, the fact-checkers missed that one. Also, they missed the fact that zombies don’t exist. The freaked out response from viewers and the ACLU earned a response from the producers of the show, who seem to find the whole thing really rather ridiculous. You can almost hear the eye-rolling in showrunner Glen Mazzara’s response provided to The Daily Beast:
“The producers and writers of The Walking Dead are fully aware that the morning-after pill would not induce an abortion or miscarriage. We exercised our artistic creative license to explore a storyline with one of our characters, not to make any pro-life or pro-choice political statement. We sincerely hope that people are not turning to the fictional world of The Walking Dead for accurate medical information.”
But it’s on TV! That’s almost as accurate as getting your medical information from the internet! It’s a sad day when we realize we can no longer trust fictional people surviving a zombie apocalypse to provide us with quality medical advice. Also, we may have to accept that people making pro-life or pro-choice decisions under the pressure of a zombie-infested world might have a slightly different view of the issues. And that, you know, it's not real.