When we were in an economic nightmare ten years ago, zombie films disturbed me. Half dead automatons wandering the street were just too real. As a child I always hated visiting Bristol because the homeless would ask me for change. It just didn’t sit well me when an adult begged change from a child. Now the homeless are visible in my home town. Now, when a homeless person approaches my family, I still am speechless. Not content to just sit, the homeless will approach passers by. How do you explain to your sons that people live in tents on our streets or incapacitate themselves with Spice as shoppers pass by? Is there any one in authority to help? Zombie films make me uneasy. Was the zeitgeist of such films that intrepid heroes should cut a swath through the infected? Should my family push through the rain soaked, sleeping bag wearing underclass? I once felt the need to share a sausage roll with a young man slumped down outside Greggs. As I proffered the delicacy, his mobile phone went off and he proceeded to answer a top of the range I-phone. I withdrew the offer of a sausage roll.
Fast forward ten years and Kim Eun-hee and Yang Kyung-il have created a masterpiece of a Netflix drama. The film is based on that other classic, the web comic ” The Kingdom of the Gods” . This South Korean political thriller/ horror film is dark and disturbing but compulsory viewing. Kim Seong-Hun and Ju Ji-hood are remarkable actors. The central relationship between the crown prince and his bodyguard drives the narrative but Bae Doon as the medic only adds to this amazing cast. The costumes are amazing and the action nail-biting. From a gamer’s perspective, the recreation of Joseon Korea, shortly after the abortive Japanese invasion, is inspired. The fight scenes are so well choreographed and the costumes exquisite.
I watched all two series in a week. I haven’t been this obsessed since the days of the Sopranos and all weekend binges. Series three of Kingdom has been given the go-ahead after the amazing resection that it has deservedly received. Will the evil Queen consort ( Kim Hye-jui) spread the virus to fight for the succession? I still don’t like zombie films but this is a class apart. Let me know what you think and what are your recommendations for lock-down binges?