Review: The Generation of Z, Dept W By Grace Watts on April 23, 2015

If you’re a fan of The Walking Dead then you will absolutely love The Generation of Z. This site-specific and immersive experience is set in 2015 London, where a highly contagious virus has broken out turning the majority of the population into zombies.

You are thrown straight into the heart of the story — they don’t ease you into it. The first encounter you have is shouts, abuse and a torch in your face. This show is not for the faint of heart or for someone who doesn’t want to be engaged. The theatrical journey has a strong narrative yet doesn’t give away any obvious choices and they call upon each audience member to make their own opinions. The actors were superb and completely ready for anything the audience threw at them. As an audience member you could say anything you wanted yet the actors always kept the authority throughout, especially as they were playing the parts of the soldiers. They were all energised and giving the audience 100% commitment to the reality of the situation. My team branch was led by Mouse (played by Miles Yekinni). He was really imposing, powerful and played the role with conviction. The setting was perfect with misty, dark and desolated rooms. They were full of missing person posters, blood smears and had dark corners at every turn which made the atmosphere spine-tingling. The production was promenade and they used the anticipation of not knowing where you were going well. There were moments of tense silence followed by deafening gunshot noises, all strategically planned to spike your anxiety. They do warn in the advertising that there will be scenes of a violent nature. I don’t want to give away any spoilers but there was a particularly graphic scene involving barbed wire which was very realistic. Then at another point I looked next to me and a guy was splattered in blood. It was brilliant! The Generation of Z is so immersive, you’re never quite sure who is part of the production or just another audience member — and remember the virus is highly contagious! This production offers a unique experience for everyone. At points the audience is split apart so you don’t all experience the same story either. The Generation of Z did deliver. My body was pumped with adrenaline and the ending tests the strongest of nerves. You are thrust into your own horror film but as an audience member you have the choice to make the experience as thrilling as your own suspension of disbelief is willing to go. The Generation of Z is playing until 5 July. For tickets and more information, see The Generation of Z website.