Another fresh entry in the South Korean zombie genre, ALL OF US ARE DEAD, is an interesting ride into the eyes and perspectives of a group of teenagers trapped at ground zero of a zombie incursion. I would say it’s a clever take on the zombie virus but 28 days later already came up with such an idea, and executed it much better. This was a deceptive coming of age tale hidden inside a zombie apocalypse, a primary reason being that it was created to stop bullying inside the school system. One of the evil zombies is a bully, and harassed the main party over and over until finally meeting their demise. Then there’s the clichés and clique, jocks and nerds, rich vs poor, all the fun stuff of school life in South Korea.
It was twelve episodes long and I felt it was just enough, it was starting to teeter on exhausting. There’s only so much snarling, screaming, chewing, and all around horrible sounds one can take. And in so many inventive ways before it all starts to numb and blur together. The acting was fun because not all of the actors were recognizable, some I knew from before but for the most part, they were new to me. And everyone did a fantastic job, especially the actress that played the evil rich bitch, that was a particularly fine performance – actress Lee Yoo-mi, recognizable from Squid Game. The special effects team and stunts deserve a callout when making zombie shows, they did a great job making the gore avert my eyes from the screen.
Not much I have to say about this, nothing really morally beautiful, or hidden here. No deeper meanings, even though it did try hard to create some. To be better and kind to each other in dark times. But I mean, that should be a given. Characters in the show asked, who would make such a crazy world? Well, how about the author designs a zombie show where the enemy is the zombies, and they don’t empower the bullies with even more capabilities to spread harm. Because it was really neat to see a show embrace having to establish a dedicated spot to relieve themselves, so a show focused on survival would have had more impact than sprinkling it in lightly over the plot. And yes, so many character deaths were obvious, and served the sole purpose to push the plot action forward, while taking cheap shots of emotional manipulation at the audience. Yes, let’s connect the paternal figure with child that’s been longing after them just long enough to develop a bond in the viewer’s eyes. To let them identify with a very human emotion before we kill him off violently, and incredibly needlessly, coupled with stupidity. If you’re gonna T-Rex some zombies with a flare, you have plenty of time to escape a closed space and run away while tossing them.
Overall, if you like zombies, you’ll like this.