By Dave B.
Famine sweeps the land. Nobles conspire for the throne against the Crown Prince. And the King is dead. But then he isn’t. That’s the backdrop of the Korean drama, Kingdom (Netflix). As usurpers consolidate their control of the kingdom, the Crown Prince is forbidden to see his ailing father and flees, seeking answers as to how to heal the King and allies with which to save himself. What the Crown Prince discovers on his journey will shake not only the foundations of power in his kingdom, but also threaten the very existence of his country.
Kingdom is my favorite new show of 2019 (I know it’s early in the year, but still). It’s blend of political intrigue, medical mystery, sword-swinging action, humor, and zombie hordes provides one of the most fun TV watching experiences that I’ve had in years. The plot, writing, acting, and directing are all excellent. The main characters feel real instead of seeming like caricatures of people in medieval Korea. The makeup and wardrobe department masterfully capture the overall historical setting of the show and Korea provides beautiful scenery that helps accentuate the contrast between an elite that is thriving and a populace that is suffering, while both groups are unknowingly on the brink of the apocalypse. Perhaps best of all, the English dubbing is shockingly good. I often found myself forgetting that the show isn’t an English-language production.
The only negative thing that I have to say about Kingdom is that the season ended on such a horrifyingly awesome cliffhanger, that I’m pissed that I’ll have to wait to see what happens next! If Kingdom had nothing to do with zombies, it would still be a fantastic show. Adding that element, and doing so in a realistic, yet creative way, only enhances all of the attributes that will make this show an international phenomenon. In the same way that “Train to Busan” is my favorite zombie movie, Kingdom is now my favorite zombie televisions show, and largely for the same reasons: a wonderful plot, great characters, an abundance of action, and a ton of heart. I highly recommend Kingdom to everyone, regardless of if they are fans of zombies or not.
I have no clue what I'm doing, but I'll keep doing whatever it is to the best of my ability.