Don’t worry – this All Of Us Are Dead review is spoiler-free!
All Of Us Are Dead Review: This is top quality zombie fare!
I’ve been consuming more Korean shows and movies than ever these days. Netflix has so many K-dramas and other Korean content available that my biggest problem is finding time to fit in everything I want to watch – my To-Watch list is huge! However, I must confess I have a long-time love of zombie shows and movies. That’s why, as soon as I saw the trailer for the new show All Of Us Are Dead (지금 우리 학교는), I knew that I had to see it.
It started on January 28th and I binged it in a matter of days. It did NOT disappoint me, I have zero regrets.
The show focuses on a group of high school students who are just getting settled into their first class of the day when a strange virus sets off a zombie outbreak in the building. The series follows the main group as they attempt to work together to survive while students and teachers alike fall victim around them.
All Of Us Are Dead doesn’t take long to get moving. Episode one gives us an introduction to the main, most important characters (and some love interests) but none of that slows down the pace of the show. We also get something that is a bit unusual in zombie shows and films – in the first episode we actually see who Patient Zero is, and we even see how the whole outbreak begins. Often, as viewers, we don’t get the origin story, the “how” and the “why”. We just accept that zombies exist, and the rest is left to our imagination. This was a really interesting change.
The outbreak itself starts in the final 15 minutes of episode one. From the second that the first attack occurs until the final moments of the very last episode, the pace is relentless and it’s absolute chaos from start to finish. And I mean chaos in the best possible, most exciting way.
The story rarely slows down. Every time you think you’ll get a moment to catch your breath, something new happens that makes you jump. My family wondered what on earth I was watching because every five minutes I was shouting or gasping. The entire series is just about 12 hours long; I like to joke that I went through a 12-hour panic attack. The adrenaline is unreal, waiting to see if anyone will make it out of the school alive. More than once, I intended to stop watching but the ending of the episode would compel me to keep going.
If you’re a bit of a zombie connoisseur, these are not Walking Dead or old-school Dawn of the Dead zombies. They don’t shuffle about in slow confusion and they don’t take hours or days to turn. These are quick-to-turn zombies like we see in Train to Busan or #Alive. They’re the kind of monster that had me thinking, “I don’t think I would stand a chance in this situation.”
I don’t believe in spoilers so I won’t ruin any surprises or twists – and there are plenty of those! I will say that a solid theme in this show is determination. The students quickly learn that, for a variety of reasons, they won’t be able to count on the adults to rescue them. They’re on their own and if they want to survive, they need to do it together.
Again, without saying too much, I’ll also add that the ending was brilliant. They can easily film a second season if they want (and it was successful enough that Netflix will probably ask for it), but they can also stop it there. It was a very satisfactory ending, neither cliffhanger nor perfectly wrapped up. Personally I do hope they bring us more episodes because I love the characters and the writing is fantastic, but my imagination can write my own ending if I need to.
I’ve watched a lot of zombie stories in my life. Without a doubt, All Of Us Are Dead is the best one I have ever seen. If you hit play, I hope you enjoy it. Just don’t watch it alone in the dark.
Have you seen this show too? Let me know what you thought, but please remember this is a spoiler-free All Of Us Are Dead review, so please don’t ruin it for anyone who hasn’t finished it yet!