The Great Wall of Horror: Kingdom (2019), not your average Kdrama


In this installment of The Great Wall of Horror, we take a look at the very creepy Netflix original Korean series, Kingdom.

I’m the first to admit that I am kind of addicted to Korean dramas. Yes, I have a subscription to Viki. Yes, I understand more Korean than Cantonese (which is one of the languages spoken regularly in my house) just from watching too many dramas. I could be ashamed…but I’m not. Netflix has been kicking up their game in terms of Asian entertainment.

With additions like Meteor Garden, 3rd Eye and now Kingdom, they are becoming just as prominent for Asian entertainment as some specialty sites. Kingdom is a history horror drama from South Korea and it may change the way you see Korean television.

Kingdom stars Ju Ji-hoon, Kim Sang-ho, Bae Doona, Crystal Lee, Ryu Seung-ryong and Arnold Chun. The story follows the first son of a king, Chang. He becomes suspicious after his father falls ill and the new, young and very pregnant queen will not let anyone, including his son, see him. When Chang sneaks in one night, he sees the shadow of a terrible monster before he is pulled away.

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After digging into the stolen medical journals for his fathers illness, he heads to the countryside to find the doctor who helped him. In a conspiracy to take the thrown from the young prince, the queen’s father (who is also the right hand of the king) accuses Chang of treason and searches for him to be arrested.

Meanwhile, the doctor who treated the king heads back to his small village. His young assistant was brutally killed while treating the king and he brings him back home to be buried. The starving villagers, however, eat the young man’s body without knowing he was infected with a strange illness. Soon the whole village succumbs to an illness that makes them seek out living flesh and hide in darkness and sleep when the sun rises. Then Chang must try to find a cure for this disease all the while avoiding the corrupt politicians that wish to see him dead.

I LOVED this series. Normally Korean television shows follow a pretty standard formula, even the serious ones. Kingdom is unlike any Korean drama series I have ever seen and I’ve seen more than my share. The horror elements are there, the infected are mixes of zombies and the Chinese geungsi. Even if you aren’t a fan of historical shows, and I’m not usually, this hooked me in the first episode. The acting is amazing, it’s intense and scary, the story is engaging and the show’s quality is superb.

If you don’t mind a show with subtitles, then Kingdom is a great show to binge. There are only six episodes, but it will leave you wanting more.

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Fan of stunning Asian horror? Enjoy the latest Great Wall of Horror? Let the other horror heads know what you think comment section below.