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article imageReview: Zombies taking over London at Generation Of Z Special

By Tim Sandle     May 10, 2015 in Entertainment
London - London has a new "immersive theater" project — Generation of Z. In this production the audience are part of the plot and are required to interact with zombie resistance fighters and the odd member of the walking dead too.
A zombie sits in the entrance hall to the Generation of Z (London).
A zombie sits in the entrance hall to the Generation of Z (London).
The premise of Generation of Z is, according to Time Out: "The zombies have broken into London and they're infecting the masses and you could be next. The deadly Z virus has transformed the global population into a rabid horde who are in Whitechapel waiting to make you their prey."
The hand of one of the audience  marked up with an  Armed Resistance  stamp.
The hand of one of the audience, marked up with an 'Armed Resistance' stamp.
The Generation of Z is written by Benjamin Farry, Simon London and David Van Horn, and directed by Michael Hurst and Colin Mitchell.
At the start of the production, the audience are led into a caged area. Soon a troop of soldiers arrive and split the group into four sections, each of which is led by one of the troop.
The crowd assembles  ready to enter the Generation of Z theater production.
The crowd assembles, ready to enter the Generation of Z theater production.
Troops start to come into a caged area where the crowd (audience) assembles  ready to move out befor...
Troops start to come into a caged area where the crowd (audience) assembles, ready to move out before the zombies attack,
The story then proceeds as solo adventures, although with connections between each of the groups, before the different sections of the crowd reunite.
A computer screen shows how an imagined zombie outbreak is taking over London.
A computer screen shows how an imagined zombie outbreak is taking over London.
The production is located in the East End of London, close to the iconic Brick Lane (which boasts the highest number of curry houses in one concentrated area in Europe.) For the staging of the event, the producers have made good use of an abandoned warehouse.
A female actor  dressed in the guise of one of the walking dead.
A female actor, dressed in the guise of one of the walking dead.
With the story plot, the audience thrust into an abandoned transport facility designed to take people to safety. However, alarm sounds and soldiers arrive. To get out alive the audience need to work together and with the actors.
A shot from the play  z hoard of zombies scare the audience.
A shot from the play, z hoard of zombies scare the audience.
An alternative shot of a zombie attack  the audience seem genuinely scared.
An alternative shot of a zombie attack, the audience seem genuinely scared.
The zombies, as well as the ethos, has a flavor of the movie 28 Days Later. The various rooms into which the audience are led, including a mess hall and computer control room, a littered with "missing persons" posters and people who have left in a hurry.
Occasionally members of the audience are pulled out to take part, whether it is to search for a missing key or to be held hostage by a man in the process of transforming into a zombie. This gives an edge to the production. Added to this the story unfolds in "real time."
Part of the  28 Days Later Look  at Generation of Z in London.
Part of the '28 Days Later Look' at Generation of Z in London.
The story line is light but the scares are a plenty, and the acting is solid. For the faint hearted, be warned: the zombies look real and the cast fire blanks in realistic looking guns; there are also strobe light effects and an air of claustrophobia. Much of the action takes place down twisting, dark and narrow passages.
An actor portraying a zombie  shuffling towards the audience at Generation of Z  in London.
An actor portraying a zombie, shuffling towards the audience at Generation of Z, in London.
If you like frenetic paced excitement, don't mind getting a little dirty of splattered with blood (well, corny syrup) then you will enjoy the show. Having attended Grimm Tales, the former is better (see Digital Journal's review here.) However, Generation of Z is great fun for those who enjoy horror movies and wished they could be part of the experience. Digital Journal rating 4 out of 5.
The chilling phrase  extinction  warns those taking part in Generation of Z.
The chilling phrase 'extinction' warns those taking part in Generation of Z.
More about Zombie, generation z, interactive theater, Theater, Role play
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