Dead Set was a 5-part TV special here in the UK earlier this year. That’s right – a zombie TV series! It wasn’t perfect, but it was good. Very good in fact. As it’s the season of goodwill I’m going to be nice to it.
Dead Set revolves around the UK version of reality TV show Big Brother. We’ve had Horror movies based around fictional reality TV shows before (My Little Eye, Wrong Turn 2) but this is a real reality one. If you get my drift. And it’s very well observed indeed. The highlight has surely got to be real-life presenter Davina McCall getting killed. Twice. First as a human, then as a zombie. Very satisfying indeed. To be fair to her, she’s a very good zombie. Still a pain in the arse presenter though.
We follow the inhabitants of the Big Brother house as they attempt to survive a class 4 zombie outbreak, and get their heads around the fact that they’re not on TV anymore. The witty script provides lots of laughs throughout, and the zombie make-up - the most important feature of any zombie film in my not so humble opinion - is pretty damn fine.
Weaknesses? Well, there are no real surprises. No twists or turns. Just a fairly linear plot with the usual zombie cliches i.e. the trip for supplies, the heroic journey to find the loved one... all done in a sub-28 Days Later style, with camera-work so jerky that it makes Paul Greengrass look like a paraplegic. And washed-out colour has its place, but I got a colour TV for a reason, ok?
Oh, and one day someone’s going to have the guts to tell Ray Winstone’s daughter that she can’t really act.
Not me though.
But enough with the negative waves, Moriarty! Dead Set is a worthy addition to the zombie genre. And certainly the finest UK Zombie TV series this year. Put it on your list. If you don't have a list, get one.
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