When You’re Lost in the Darkness
When You’re Lost in the Darkness is the season premiere of HBO’s new Zombie Apocalypse series.
There are spoilers in the review below.
When You’re Lost in the Darkness opens with two epidemiologists discussing microorganisms and how they could cause a global pandemic. One of the epidemiologist explains how some fungi take control of their hosts and force them to do the fungi’s will. What is that will? To spread, to take over. This segment was a great way to explain what is about to start.
Sarah Miller, played by Nico Parker, wakes up in her pink bedroom adorned with posters, school awards, and pictures of her friends and family. She immediately runs to make sure her father, Joel Miller, played by Pedro Pascal is awake.
It is Joel’s birthday. He seems gruff, but clearly his daughter loves him. The two have immediate onscreen chemistry. As Joel’s brother comes in we find out that there are money problems. Joel is going to work a double on his birthday.
Sarah runs upstairs to take a watch and money from her father’s nightstand. After hearing about their money issues, it seems like a crappy thing to do.
As the Miller’s are leaving, we are introduced to their next door neighbors. The neighbors ask Sarah to come over later, laying on a guilt trip. Sarah reluctantly agreess to go over after school.
After school Sarah heads to a watch repair shop. We find out that she isn’t a thief after all. She took the money and the watch to fix it as a birthday present for her father. The shopkeeper fixes the watch just in time before his wife demands he shuts the store. Sarah leaves the store is shutdown for the day.
It has started. Once Sarah gets back to her neighbors, it isn’t long before we see Nana turn.
The scene is a masterpiece. It was subtle, and I found myself tensing up as I watched how the dog reacted to Nana Zombie. Just like Terminators, Dogs know when your not really human!
Sarah may not fully understand what is going on yet, but she is on edge. After she falls asleep on Joel’s lap his brother Tommy calls him. Tommy took a swing at an attacker in a bar fight and begs Joel to come bail him out. This of course leaves Sarah home alone.
The sounds of helicopters and flashing lights wakes Sarah up. The news is playing an emergency broadcast warning. Mercy, the neighbors dog is at her door. Sarah tries to take Mercy home, but Mercy wants nothing to do with it.
This leads us to our first Zombie Attack. It has a slow build, which left me more tense than if it was a jump scare.
Joel and Tommy show up just in time to save Sarah. The trio jump into Tommy’s truck and try to find a way out of town. As they drive away we see another concerned neighbor come out, thinking she just saw Tommy drive over people. The concerned neighbor rushes to help. The infected attack her as the trio escape.
The trio head to the highway to find the military isn’t allowing anyone to leave. Planes fall out of the sky as the three attempt to flee through town. Another driver rams their car, flipping it over. The accident separates the group. Tommy tells them he will meet them at the river. Joel picks up his injured daughter and runs.
The infected are everywhere. Joel makes it to the river only to be stopped by the military. The soldier has orders to shoot anyone leaving the town.
The scene is sad. It hurt to watch.
Twenty Years Later
A child is walking along an overgrown path. He comes through the brush to reveal a world no longer dominated by mankind.
The child is captured, tested, and quickly euthanized after testing positive. The rules of this world are cruel but clear. The infected are not people. The infected must be killed.
The world has changed. The survivors use paper chits as money. Joel is desperate to make enough money to buy a car battery. He has to get out west to find him brother who has gone silent. Joel will do anything to get the money he needs. This includes selling drugs and acting as an enforcer.
Ellie is played by Bella Ramsey of Game of Thrones fame. The partisan group “The Fireflies” has Ellie in chains. They are watching her, making sure she is still human.
Joel & Ellie Meet
The Fireflies try to buy the same battery that Joel is after. Blood is shed and the leader of the local Fireflies is wounded. Her own plans to take Ellie west are shot. She offers Joel a vehicle and supplies if he will take Ellie. Joel reluctantly agrees.
Joel, Tess, and Ellie escape the compound only to be caught be the corrupt guard Joel was selling drugs to earlier. The guard follows protocol and tests each of them. Ellie’s status as infected is confirmed.
Is Ellie the savior? Is whatever allows her to test positive but resist the infections control what the world needs to survive?
I can’t wait for episode 2!
When You’re Lost in the Darkness not only has amazing actors with great chemistry but excellent writing. The story is the main focus, and it is a story that grips you and holds on until the end of the episode. Because of this When You’re Lost in the Darkness earned a 100/100, making it Worth Your Time.
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