10 Scariest Scenes from Korean Netflix Original Series ‘Kingdom’ (Part 1)

When I sat down to binge Netflix’s Kingdom on January 25, I did not think I would come out of the experience so scarred. The show masterfully employs various kinds of hunger to create a world in which humans are just as scary as the zombies. Here are some scenes that gave me full-body chills and are the reason I will never trust anyone again—dead or alive!

Disclaimer: The article contains spoilers, please read at your own risk.

1. Dan-i Falls Prey To The King

Most horror series/films start slow, springing a jump scare on us just as we’ve gotten comfortable. Kingdom, however, maintained no such niceties. The very first scene in the show makes it known that danger is just round the corner and there’s no time to get comfortable.

Physician Lee and his helper, a boy called Dan-i, walk into the King’s quarters. Physician Lee instructs Dan-i to not look at the king come what may, but as the boy places a bowl of food in front of the King, he hears the most unsettling noises from behind the blinds, and sneaks a look. The next thing we know, it’s the boy who gets dragged in by the King instead of the food.

2. The Soup That Brought About The Apocalypse

Seo-bi (Bae Doo-na) and her fellow nurse at Jiyulheon return from a long day of foraging food, only to find starving residents of the hospital feasting on meat. Yeong-shin (Kim Sung-kyu) tells her that he hunted a deer for everyone.

A man asks Seo-bi for a refill, and as she is pouring stew, she happens to see something in it that makes her drop the bowl and scream—a human finger. While this scene doesn’t involve an actual zombie, it made my stomach drop down to my feet, because I could immediately guess the horrors that were about to transpire in this hospital.

3. The Zombie Tower Scene

All at once, every single patient in Jiyulheon who ate the meat stew is unmoving, seemingly dead. The nurse wanders the hospital in shock. She suddenly sees a man move, and hopeful of saving even one life, hurries over to help.

Unbeknownst to her, the dead around her are rising as zombies. The next scene is quite possibly one of the most disturbing scenes in horror TV—in order to get a bite of the nurse, the zombies form a tower around her. Even the director of the series, Kim Sung-hoon, admitted to being unsettled after shooting it.

4. Lake Of The Undead

Prime Minister Cho (Ryu Seung-ryong) is willing to go to any lengths to retain his authority over Hanyang, including forcibly keeping the King ‘alive’ by feeding him human flesh. In this scene, we see the palace guards carry out a body wrapped in bloody sheets out of the King’s quarters, to be dropped into a lake in the place. As it hits the water, we see that the lake is full of similar dead bodies. It’s a shot that makes the viewer wonder who is more dangerous—the humans or the zombies.

5. Zombie Mother

A frantic mother hides her daughter in a storage box to keep her safe. We notice that she has been bitten, and is about to turn into a zombie any moment.

Suddenly, her other daughter comes looking for her, but the woman has now turned it a zombie and ends up doing the very thing she was trying to prevent—devour the flesh of her own child, while her other child watches.

Let us know your scariest moments in the comments below! Read Part 2.

IndoorEnthusiast

Indoor Enthusiast (Esha) is a staff writer at Kdramapal. She is responsible for bringing all the latest happenings in Kdramaland, as well as features and recaps of currently airing dramas, to the readers of the site. As a gender studies student, she loves analyzing K-dramas through the lens of gender politics and social justice. You're most likely to find her droning on and on about how Ji Hae-soo from It's Okay That's Love and Sung Bora from Reply 1988 are the best heroines to ever grace our screens. Her favorite dramas tend to be thrillers like Secret Forest and Signal, as well as heartwarming shows like Misaeng. When not in the mood for either of those, you can find her binging on shows about female friendships a la Age of Youth or rom-coms that come with sprinklings of feminism, like Because This Life Is My First. She lives in India, spends all her free time reading books, and would love nothing more than to meet Gong Hyo-jin and sign away her life's earnings to the actress. Indoor Enthusiast can be reached at [email protected]