So, it is established that using the bodily fluids of a zombie hides you from zombies. The characters know this. (They also may know that keeping semi-disabled zombies also works).

Why don't they just keep the innards around to keep themselves safe?

  • 4
    Ha ha Mr. zombie! I can hide from you! I have a bucket of innards! Weeee! Now you can't find me! Commented Oct 26, 2013 at 4:44
  • All im saying is that when they make supply runs, there should be in disguise.
    – user46874
    Commented Jun 12, 2015 at 7:43
  • Or at least in mild armor? Their world is open to raw resources. World War Z showed you could at least duct tape some magazines. Try biting through that. I wondered this myself but I think in the end the answer is simply because it wouldn't make for good drama. They do all kinds of things you would never do. Like passing up clean clothes, never closing doors behind themselves, rarely stabbing heads through the fences. Nobody even considered flaming the whole mob in the quarry with the gas from all those cars they had no problems lining up. You could go on forever on the subject
    – Kai Qing
    Commented Dec 1, 2015 at 1:01
  • Related: Why don't they cover themselves in zombie guts more often?
    – TARS
    Commented Nov 21, 2016 at 16:38

3 Answers 3


This is covered more in-depth in the comic. See Issue 83. It's disgusting and makes people physically sick from the stench. It also plays havoc on your focus and makes people on edge.

Ever smelled a small dead animal? How pungent and awful even a roadkill can be? Imagine that on a larger scale and being literally inside it. That's why.

SPOILER ALERT if you click on the link and are not caught up.

EDIT: The YouTube video of the comic issue was taken down. The relevant information is in the spoiler block below.

Douglas is "covering" them by continuing to shoot wildly and Rick tries to yell out to him to stop shooting. Douglas is attracting the undead, gets bitten several times, and he stops firing. Rick asks if everyone is okay and then asks Carl. When he does not answer, Rick looks down at Carl, only to discover that Carl has been shot in the eye.

NEW EDIT - 08-31-15

This info pertains only to the comic so far, but is relevant to the question. Spoilers!

There is now, in the comic, a huge group of people who dress up in the flesh of the dead, and walk among them. Their disguise protects them. It should also be noted that for all practical reasons, these people, or at least their leader, Alpha, seems to be insane or at least a proponent of radical devolution. They wear the flesh of the dead to walk among them, but also seem to lose what it means to be human. Or at least a fairly regular person. These "Whisperers" seem to be further away from Rick and his group than the band Right Said Fred is away from Slayer.

  • Please, next time you create a spoiler alert, please also warn if it's about the TV series, Comics or the Game. =)
    – Oak
    Commented Jun 15, 2014 at 21:19
  • 3
    I used the words "comic" and "issue 83" at the start of the post, and said "issue" again in the edit. Sorry if it was unclear, but I tried. Commented Jun 15, 2014 at 21:25
  • Thank you :P, It's just that I never got my hands on the comics and kinda got spoiler, won't rage 'bout it, but can help the others =)
    – Oak
    Commented Jun 16, 2014 at 15:44
  • 1
    To be fair, it was pretty obvious I was talking about the comic. It said "comic" once already and said "issue" twice. All I did was add the "comic" again. Commented Jun 16, 2014 at 15:47
  • If the disgustingness of the smell was the main issue, they could just use noseplugs or a clothespin over the nose, the zombies probably aren't smart enough to notice that's a weird thing to have on one's nose. The reasons given in Wad Cheber's answer seem plausible, thought.
    – Hypnosifl
    Commented Nov 30, 2015 at 18:23

Would you enjoy walking around covered in zombie guts?

Being covered in zombie guts provides some protection but if you are not also acting like a zombie it can be seen through (so to speak) the episode where they covered themselves in guts had zombies sniff at them and I believe even follow them for a time acting a little confused, also the guts will wash off which means if you used them to infiltrate a heavily infested area and a sudden rain storm moves in your royally screwed

"Tame" zombies may help a bit on the road but Michonne still had to fight on occasion when a zombie got too close. Maybe if you staked a bunch of tamed zombies on a perimeter outside of the line of sight of the prison it would protect it, but the sheer logistics of that undertaking would make it more trouble than any benefits you might derive from it

  • If my choice were "have sealed tank of zombie with me" and "be devoured", I would choose the tank. Commented Oct 26, 2013 at 6:08
  • At the same time, most of the adults in the group were able to place a large number of zombies in the barn. Seems to me that if this were something that could save them, they might be interested. Commented Oct 26, 2013 at 6:16
  • the barn zombies were captured in ones and twos alone not from the middle of a frenzied herd and honestly they dont have the time to try and tame any of the zombies attacking the prison they are having trouble keeping the population below fence breaking levels as it is
    – severa
    Commented Oct 26, 2013 at 7:28

TWD Robert Kirkman was asked this question on the season six midseason finale of Talking Dead. His reply, which I will include in full after I can access the video of the episode, boiled down to this:

  • It isn't guaranteed to work (as we saw in Season 1, Episode 2, Guts), and you are still at an incredible risk of being bitten.

  • It's an appalling situation in which to find yourself.

  • Infection from the guts themselves is a very serious threat.

  • You would need to stop and refresh your "camouflage" very frequently, because the stink wears off very quickly.

It’s also worth noting that Kirkman was also asked why characters don’t smear themselves in zombie guts to disguise themselves more often. Kirkman noted that it’s usually an option of last resort because there’s still a high risk of being bitten, that the zombie guts themselves can lead to infection, and that the entrails will dry out and have to be frequently replenished.
- Source

And in the season six midseason finale, we saw a small group attempt the guts trick. Huge spoilers for the season six midseason premiere ahead:

We'll see it fail miserably in the midseason premiere. Sam is talking, calling attention to the group. He will be bitten. Jesse will freak out and be attacked as well. She will cling to Carl, begging for help. When she refuses to let go of Carl, Rick will chop her hand off with his hatchet, which will provoke Ron to start shooting at Rick and Carl. Carl will be shot in the face and lose an eye. Michonne will kill Ron. Then Rick and Michonne will take on the herd hand to hand, while Carl receives medical treatment. This is a perfect example of the biggest reason they don't bother with the "disguises" more often - it is far from a foolproof system, and will frequently fail. - Source

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