This a spoiler-free review for all 8 episodes of Black Summer, which premieres Thursday, April 11 on Netflix.
Tonally opposite of the TV series it was initially designed to be a prequel for, Netflix’s Black Summer is a charged, immersive and shocking trek through the frenzied beginnings of a rabid zombie apocalypse. Created by Karl Schaefer and director John Hyams, as a companion series for Syfy’s tongue-in-cheek Z Nation, Black Summer plays nothing for laughs. It’s bare bones and brutal. It’s no-frills zombie carnage, taking the most harrowing elements of the genre and executing them superbly.
One could argue there’s an inherent emptiness to zombie survival – Black Summer is all about survival and not much else, but the series’ commitment to frantic unsentimental chaos combined with a chef’s kiss of twisty, turny audience contempt makes this one of the most intense rides you’ll ever experience.