Now that The Walking Dead has aired its eleventh and final season on AMC, what else can fans of the zombie genre watch? There is a bit of time to wait before the release of The Walking Dead: Dead City spinoff in April 2023, and Netflix has a great lineup of movies and shows in the genre.
TWDU is ripe with spinoff news and has already released three spinoffs, Fear the Walking Dead, The Walking Dead: World Beyond and Tales of the Walking Dead. The zombies or walkers featured in these series are slow-moving, decaying undead searching, for one thing, food in the form of live flesh. These undead are most assuredly a threat but not the scariest zombies ever imagined.
The zombie genre is diverse in the type of undead creatures and the storylines. Many shows and films are dramatic or action-packed, and many use comedy to poke fun at life in an apocalypse.
What zombie movies and shows are playing on Netflix?
Netflix has many zombie films and series to choose from. The easiest way to find these is to simply put “zombie” in the search bar. There you will find an incredible catalog of choices within the genre, including ten seasons of The Walking Dead.
Below we will run down some of the great choices available on Netflix in this genre.
All of Us are Dead
The Netflix original, All of Us are Dead is an outstanding zombie series worthy of a binge. The series has been renewed for a second season.
This series follows a group of high schoolers as their campus becomes ground zero for a zombie outbreak. They must act quickly and learn on the go as they try to survive as their reanimated classmates and school staff tries to make them their next meal.
Santa Clarita Diet
This series is a dark comedy starring Drew Barrymore and Timothy Olyphant as the Hammonds. Santa Clarita Diet follows the married real estate agent duo of Joel and Shelia when Shelia undergoes a transformation and becomes undead.
This series is a comical look at a suburban family who has to deal with a member of their family who has turned into a zombie. They must navigate the unexpected change while searching for a cure and trying to hide her condition from the neighbors.
The series ran for three seasons before it was canceled in 2019.
This series only ran for one season, but Daybreak is a fun look at a teenage boy searching for his crush during an apocalypse. After a nuclear blast wiped out many people and turned some adults into “ghoulies,” this series’ zombie equivalent, the teens must navigate life in an apocalypse free of adult supervision.
The series plays a great homage to Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, complete with Matthew Broderick, who played Ferris Bueller in the 80s film, playing the dad in this series. The first episode features many nods to that film, making it very nostalgic for those who lived in that era.
Daybreak is based on the comic series of the same name by Brian Ralph and was created by Brad Peyton (Rampage) and Aron Eli Coleite (Heros).
Ash vs Evil Dead
Ash William has been around for 30 years and has undergone many changes since the Evil Dead trilogy. Ash vs Evil Dead is a series that finds Ash 30 years later working in a grocery store as a stock boy.
Bruce Campbell reprises his role as Ash, and things can’t be as simple as working as a stock boy. Once again, he will need to become the hero to save the world from the evil dead. This time he will be joined by two of his co-workers, Pablo and Kelly.
The series was developed by Sam Raimi, Ivan Raimi, and Tom Spezialy for Starz. Ash vs Evil Dead is set in Raimi’s Evil Dead universe and is a sequel to the original trilogy of films. This series doesn’t address the events in the 2013 reboot. However, with a three-season run, there is still a lot of Ash’s story to be told.
Army of the Dead
Zack Snyder’s recent release, Army of the Dead, has received mixed reviews. Many critics harshly reviewed the film’s run time of 148 minutes but praised the comedy and gore.
This film mashed the zombie and heist genres for an action-packed over-the-top film that fans of zombies seemed to enjoy. There were some outrageous liberties taken with this film’s zombies, but since we’ve never encountered real zombies, it’s always interesting to see another type of the undead. This group was intelligent and organized and even has a hierarchy to the group. Which, in my opinion, makes them some of the scariest ones yet.
The all-star lineup of actors included Dave Bautista, Ella Purnell, Omari Hardwick, Ana de la Reguera, Theo Rossi, Matthias Schweighöfer, Nora Arnezeder, Hiroyuki Sanada, Tig Notaro, Raúl Castillo and Huma Qureshi.
Be sure to check out the prequel Army of Thieves, which isn’t in the zombie genre but a fun show setting up one of the main characters.
Day of the Dead: Bloodline
Day of the Dead: Bloodline is based on characters created by George A. Romero and is the second adaptation of Romero’s original Day of the Dead (1985).
A group of military personnel and civilians work to develop a cure for the virus that has reanimated the dead. The gore is impressive, and the rotters in this film look great, but the overall reaction has been negative. Johnathon Schaech’s Max is an outstanding character who carries the film.
Tread lightly when viewing this one, and don’t expect Romero’s quality.
Kingdom is Netflix’s first original Korean series adapted from the webcomic The Kingdom of the Gods.
Set during Korea’s Joseon Dynasty, The Crown Prince of Joseon, Lee Chang, tries to figure out what is causing a zombie outbreak. The series has received positive reviews from critics and viewers. Rotten Tomatoes gives it a 93% rating, and one of its critics stated, “An enthralling blend of blood, terror, and political intrigue, Kingdom is a refreshing addition to the zombie landscape.” High praise indeed.
The series currently has two seasons available on Netflix. A special “sidequel” episode focusing on a supporting character, Ashin, will release on July 23, 2021.
Another zombie-themed feature based on a comic book is iZombie. This series ran for five seasons on CW.
Olivia (Rose McIver) is a medical examiner who became a zombie and eats the brains of murder victims, which gives her a look into their memories to help solve their murders. Early on, Olivia discovered if she didn’t consume brains regularly, she would become one of the typical zombies. She is soon discovered by her boss, who keeps her secret while trying to find a cure for her condition.
Critics have given iZombie favorable reviews for the fresh, casual take on the genre.
Z Nation originally aired on Syfy and ran for five seasons, and all five are available to stream on Netflix.
Days before the outbreak, three inmates were injected with experimental vaccines and Murphy, one of the three inmates, was the only one to survive the experiment. The series begins three years into the zombie apocalypse, and Murphy is the only known zombie bite survivor. His blood contains antibodies that are the only hope for saving what is left of humanity.
The Netflix series Black Summer is a prequel set in the Z Nation universe.
Fans of Black Summer waited a long time for the second season’s release.
Black Summer is a prequel to Z Nation, and this story takes place in the early days of the outbreak. This was a time when people couldn’t quite comprehend what was happening, which was also the most difficult period due to that lack of knowledge. Rose (Jaime King) gets separated from her daughter during this time and goes on a journey to find her child.
The series has been praised by Stephen King in a Tweet stating, “Just when you think there’s no more scare left in zombies, THIS comes along. Existential hell in the suburbs, stripped to the bone.”
Other zombie-themed titles on Netflix:
- ZOM 100: Bucket List of the Dead (coming in 2023)
- Valley of the Dead
- Day of the Dead Bloodline
- This is the End
- The Silence
- Day Shift
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