Even though I’m struggling to survive without “The Walking Dead” until its return with season 4, I’m still able to satisfy my love for zombies with BBC America’s new series, “In the Flesh.” We were treated to a three day preview this past weekend. A second extended series of the show is planned for 2014. “In the Flesh” was created and written by Dominic Mitchell and stars Luke Newberry as Kieren Walker. This show allows us to see the world through zombie eyes. What’s it like to be a zombie? Let’s find out together, after the jump.
The action takes place in the village of Roarton, England where re-animated people (the new politically correct term for zombie) are now being rehabilitated and medicated. There’s a pill for everything and a name for every disease. The zombies aren’t bad; nope! The rotting masses are just misunderstood. They have PDS. No! It’s not a new sexual disease, but a syndrome; partially deceased syndrome, to be exact. After the zombies are heavily medicated, given cosmetics, and contact lenses; to hide their decay, they are returned into the waiting arms of their families. I’m betting not all of the townsfolk are extending an olive branch to the former flesh eaters.
Nothing like a kick in the butt from Karma! Kieren (Luke Newberry) Walker committed suicide when his best friend and lover, Rick Macy (David Walmsley) died fighting in Afghanistan. But Kieren, who later became one of the re-animated, is not too happy with this whole rising from the dead scenario, and he’s having flashbacks of his former flesh eating smorgasbords. Kieren’s parents try to make him feel at home. Very British and upper lip, they act like there’s nothing wrong with a corpse sitting at the table, pretending he’s eating Mum’s meatloaf. Kieren is not able to eat or drink food, but I wasn’t sure if this was due to his condition or if Mum’s cooking, sucked. Even though Mom and Dad are happy to have the boy back, Kieren’s sister, Jem (Harriet Cains) isn’t. She’s a member of the Human Volunteer Force; they kill zombies. She thinks her parents are nuts, but keeps Kieren’s return a secret; the HVF will kill him.
Rick Macy (David Walmsley) is back from the dead with his head sewn up like a patchwork quilt. His dad Bill (Steve Evets), who is the head of the HVF, forces Rich to hunt PDS sufferers; Rick’s not too happy with these father and son adventures, or that his father refuses to admit that Rick’s a zombie.
Amy Dyer (Emily Bevan) is also a PDS sufferer and a former hunting buddy of Kieren. Unlike Kieren and Rick, she doesn’t look at her situation as a problem. Nope! Amy feels free! She doesn’t have to worry about dying; she’s dead. She helps Kieren come to terms with his condition, but leaves the village in search of the extremist group led by the “Undead Prophet”
The zombies might try to eat you, but the humans are the ones you have to keep an eye on. While Kieren’s parents, Sue (Marie Critchley) and Steve (Steve Cooper) put a protective arm around their son, you have the Vicar Oddie (Kenneth Cranham) spewing words of hate from the pulpit, “The PDS sufferers are different than us; an abomination.” Blah, blah, blah! Vicar Oddie is the poster child for hate mongers, and he has the ear of Bill and his HVF team. Bill goes through the village killing other PDS victims while ignoring the fact that his very own son is a zombie. This arrogance will cost him. I love the expression on the Vicar’s face when Bill tells him that there’s nothing wrong with Rick; just ignore those scars.
Spoiler Alert and Conclusion
Bill kills Rick when he refuses to hunt down Kieren. Ken Burton (Ricky Tomlinson) kills Bill; revenge for the death of his PDS wife. This show is not on the same level as “The Walking Dead” and will never have the following that TWD has, but that’s okay. “In the Flesh” gives us a different point of view. It’s always better to look at both sides of a debate, and I like the way the British handle the zombie problem; very matter of fact; it is what it is. Zombies are here to stay; at least until the real world isn’t so scary. So we might as well enjoy all the zombie shows and movies coming at us. I had the chance to see Warm Bodies this year. It was a good movie and I recommend it. This movie tried to show zombies in a different light. What if a zombie could change or evolve and fall in love?
Me? I’m more like Rick Grimes and his group; you eliminate a threat, especially one that wants to eat you. But, if a zombie wants to be a Facebook friend, maybe, just maybe; I’ll friend them.