Many young viewers of Netflix’s new number one series, “All of Us Are Dead,” are bringing back painful memories of one of South Korea’s deadliest disasters in recent memory as they watch the bloodthirsty zombie scenes.
The 2014 Sewol ferry disaster that killed 304 people was brought up on Twitter by viewers of the Korean-language show. Around 250 of them were students from a Seoul suburb high school. After watching three episodes, one Twitter user said that the ferry disaster was the only thing on their mind. They wrote, “How children were neglected by adults whom they put their hopes in,” along with three crying emojis.
On April 16, 2014, the MV Sewol ferry sank while en route from Incheon to Jeju. Major outrage erupted following reports that the captain and a number of other ferry crew members had abandoned ship after telling passengers to stay in their cabins. Few students dared to question the authority of the teacher, and as a result, hundreds of people lost their lives. The high school students in “All of Us Are Dead” have been left to fend for themselves after a zombie virus sweeps through the building and takes over the campus.
Even when the students turn to their teachers for assistance, many of them prove to be ineffective and self-centered. As a result, some of the show’s specifics have also been criticized on social media for evoking the ferry disaster.
Sewol yellow ribbons are featured prominently in a few scenes, for example. There’s also a scene where the students record a video message for their parents, evoking memories of the recorded goodbye messages sent from the sinking ferry.
“All of Us Are Dead” shot to the top of Netflix’s Top 10 non-English-language TV list in 91 countries the moment it was released last Friday. It drew 124.79 million hours of viewing in its first three days, making it Netflix’s most popular series, according to the streaming service. Since “Squid Game” has been such a huge hit with Korean audiences and viewers worldwide, Netflix plans to release more than 25 Korean-language series in 2022, the most ever for the streaming service.
by Waiyee Yip
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