I’ve given up on SyFy shows for quite sometime now even before the whole Sharknado craze. I wasn’t too keen about the whole idea of Z Nation when word first broke out. It was immediately thrown to the “pass” pile. It’s also another zombie themed television and god knows the entertainment industry is overrun by the flesh eating undead. However, I was surprised when people were passing the world along that it was actually an enjoyable show. It’s not as dramatic as The Walking Dead, but it was quite endearing in its own low-budget kind of way. Let’s pick apart why Z Nation is worth diving into the zombie genre once more.
Z Nation isn’t as ridiculous as Sharknado and other similar films. It actually paints itself as this serious zombie show, but then it switches into an action oriented B-movie on the fly. That’s one of the things I like about watching the show. It can be scary, funny, entertaining, and tense at different points of an episode.
The dialogue and the acting can be sub-par at times, but I usually laugh it off instead of feeling annoyed by it. It’s like Z Nation knows how to strike a balance between being a serious drama and absolute trash. B-movie type entertainment can be entertaining, but there’s a point wherein too much ridiculousness is not worth watching at all.
In the pilot, the zombie baby sequence is a good example of what I’m talking about. I don’t think the Walking Dead would ever feature a zombie baby in the show. Well, at least in the same way it was portrayed in the Z Nation. I was staring at the television screen with utter disbelief when the zombie baby suddenly had super speed and strength. This was so ridiculous, yet I was honestly tense when one of the protagonists was hunting it down. I love how I can switch from finding something funny to feeling a jump scare in a matter of minutes.
It knows that it can never be taken seriously like The Walking Dead, so why not make fun of themselves from time to time. The great part is that they don’t overdo it. I really liked that scene where one of the characters performed a mercy killing and it was portrayed to be entirely normal for a community. Its not meant to be funny, and the actors are successful in making us understand this. We aren’t stuck in a mindset that we are watching a SyFy zombie show. It’s a great dramatic scene and it shows how Z Nation is versatile in jumping around genres.
Z Nation might have these good traits, but it isn’t the best at what it does. However, that does not take away from the fact that it’s still an enjoyable thing to watch when there’s nothing else to do. People might complain that zombies have been to death in TV, film, comics, and video games. The truth is people still want and will consume anything with zombies. If you’re craving for that, then Z Nation is worth your while.
Image via Syfy