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On Death’s Door: Plague of the Zombie Syndrome [Review]

Following Laura Sutherland’s interview with Zombie Syndrome creator Andy Thompson, we sent both Laura and Amanda Miller out to catch the opening week to get each of their thoughts on the show’s third incarnation, On Death’s Door.

Bettina_Strauss_photo_of_Mariah_Layne_Zombies2014-0229Laura:

So, how would I do in case of the zombie apocalypse? Well, if it starts off anything like The Virtual Stage’s presentation of On Death’s Door: Plague of the Zombie Syndrome… maybe not so well. Though, Zombie Syndrome is likely significantly more fun than *actually* getting chased by the undead. Their zombies have some rules to follow.

I can’t get into the specifics of the event without giving away spoilers, and that would ruin the surprise for all the attendees. So without giving too much away, let’s just say our team, well… didn’t succeed in our mission. But it didn’t matter in the end, because we had a darn good time doing it! I think the hardest aspect for me was not having a physical reaction to the zombies, because let’s face it, you see a zombie lurching towards you, your first reaction is “keeeel iiiiit”! Though being in downtown Vancouver, sometimes it can be hard to differentiate between a zombie lurching towards you and, you know, someone just walking that way (*cough cough*). Although it does add unintentional hilarity when poor passersby have NO idea what is going on. While most of the action takes place inside buildings or away from people, some of it does take place on the street, which can be a little confusing I think for those people not involved (we had some folks looking a little *too* interested in our group at certain points in the event). As a bit of a suggestion, while it would take away from the overall ambience, it might be a nice safety note to have someone carry a “Live Theatre Event” sign, or at least a safety vest. Because at one point, there was one slightly tipsy dude who did look ready to throw down if need be.

So should you go? Absolutely. It’s a fun night out with friends. The actors involved seemed to have a grand time in their roles, and improvised well off of the “audience” cues. Though be prepared to run if need be! Dress in layers. You’ll get warm!

 

Amanda:

Yes indeed, the Virtual Stage has done it again – once again proving that if zombies take over Vancouver, I am going to die. No getting around it for me, this is the gory end. Was I eaten by the undead? I don’t know, probably – or perhaps a lack of foresight or cunning resulted in my untimely demise… any way you look at it, I was not long for this world, and this year, I managed to take my entire team out with me, cause I have skills like that.

This chilling production of On Death’s Door: Plague of the Zombie Syndrome is astounding. A sophisticated plot and talented actors keep you enthralled as you work with your team to try surviving the night. Trust me when I say, not everyone will make it out alive. All in all, it is a really fun and interactive way to get in some quality time with a big group of friends, or to meet some new ones when you join your fellow teammates!

I do concur with Laura’s opinion though, that someone should carry a “live theatre event” sign, or some sort of acknowledgement that we are not really dealing with life-threatening zombies. Apparently, after a few beers, some locals downtown can’t really be sure, and we don’t want to go killing off the undead for real! Creator for the show, Andy Thompson has really outdone himself this year and it just keeps getting better. So thanks Andy, for successfully scaring the crap out of me again this year, I look forward to what is coming next!

On Deaths Door

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