British viewers are already well acquainted with PDS and its effects on both patients and communities. “What is PDS?”, Americans are likely asking. PDS stands for Partially Diseased Syndrome and is the basis for BBC’s new miniseries In The Flesh which will premiere on BBC America on June 6.
After receiving favorable reviews from a British audience, BBC has decided to launch In The Flesh on BBC America as a new addition to “Supernatural Sunday”, which features Doctor Who, Being Human, Orphan Black and the Nerdist. Being Human will be entering its final season while Orphan Black and the Nerdist will also be new additions.
Creator and writer Dominic Mitchell told BBC America was inspired by a “really bad” zombie movie. He began to wonder, “What if being a zombie was considered a neurological disease or syndrome? How would the government deal with it?”–And, so began his creation of PDS and his main character Kieren Walker (Luke Newberry). Kieren is a teenager who committed suicide four years ago when he is suddenly brought up from the grave with a strong craving for human flesh. After being rehabilitated, he must go back to his family and town in which he had always felt an outcast and deal with not only being a lonely teenager but flashbacks to his zombie days.
In The Flesh is not simply a show about brain-eating zombies. It is a show exploring the feeling of being an outcast–a feeling that is especially strong as a teenager. Kieren must face the classic feeling of teenager loneliness that originally drove him to suicide combined with his new diagnosis. Now he faces a different kind of name calling with words like “rotter”, “demon”, “PDS sufferer” and “undead angel”–All of this on top of dealing with coming back to life. Before going home, Kieren says, “I don’t feel ready and that’s why they say I am ready: because I’m feeling.”
In regards to the reception In The Flesh may receive in America, Mitchell says, “Well, obviously, you guys have shows like the Walking Dead, but despite the ‘zombie’ connection, these shows could not be more different.”