All Of Us Are Dead has been taking over Netflix the past few days since its release because of how it was able to take the zombie genre to another level. While most other zombie movies and shows explore the story of adults, All Of Us Are Dead follows a group of high school students that are still maturing and learning more about themselves. Of course, they learned more about the world in the hardest way possible when they were involved in a zombie virus outbreak.
As the students focus on surviving the outbreak, they get to learn more about the kind of people around them as well. This forces them to mature quickly and make the right decisions while losing friends and allies in the process of finding a way out of the apocalypse. While they do survive the outbreak, what exactly happened in the ending of All Of Us Are Dead?
What Was The Jonas Virus?
Like many different zombie movies and shows, the zombie apocalypse starts out due to a virus that is capable of attacking the person’s system and turning them into mindless undead that focus only on feeding, which also turns other people into zombies. It’s the same case for All Of Us Are Dead, which all starts from a virus.
The virus was created by a high school science teacher and a former pharmaceutical company employee named Byeong-chan. He named the virus after German philosopher Hans Jonas, whose writings explored human survival instincts in the middle of technological advancements. Byeong-chan used the Jonas Virus name because the virus has its own will to live and is capable of attacking weak cells once it enters the body of the host.
Because the virus has a will to survive that is stronger than the host’s immune system, it will begin to consume the body from a cellular level. This creates an insatiable urge to feed on the part of the person, as the virus creates a feeling of fear within the host. Because the host has a feeling of fear, it is forced to try to attack any other living thing nearby, similar to how animals attack whenever they feel fear.
In a way, the Jonas Virus pushes the host’s mindset back down to the most basic level, which is the need to eat to survive and the need to attack when threatened. And when the zombies detect that the threat has already gone below normal, they won’t sense the danger anymore because their instincts tell them that the threat is already “dead” or, in this case, undead.
As Byeong-chan observed his wife and son, who are the first persons to be turned into zombies, he noticed that forcing the hosts to a point beyond starvation will lead to the death of the hosts themselves. In turn, this will also kill the cells of the virus because they will no longer have a host body.
Why Was The Jonas Virus Created?
If you are wondering why Byeong-chan actually created such a virus, the reason is related to his son, who was getting bullied by the other kids in his school. Lee Jin-su, Byeong-chan’s son, was always getting bullied to the point that he even tried to commit suicide. And even though Byeong-chan was complaining to the school’s authority figures, they cared more about keeping the school’s reputation than making the entire matter go public by expelling the bullies.
The attacks on Jin-su continued as Byeong-chan got tired of his son being too passive. For him, he believed that his son was getting bullied because he wasn’t fighting back. This forced him to change his son using a virus that will force him to become stronger and more aggressive.
Before Byeong-chan became a high school science teacher, he was an expert in cell biology and was employed in a pharmaceutical company. In his studies, he noticed that the prey would often attack the predators once they lose their sense of fear, as their testosterone levels are increased. What Byeong-chan did was that he extracted the testosterone from a hamster and used it to turn fear into aggression.
Byeong-chan, who wanted his son to become more aggressive towards the bullies, thought that this would allow him to conquer his fear and fight back. However, he eventually turned into a zombie and even attacked his own mother, thereby turning her into a zombie as well. During the entire time, Byeong-chan kept his family shackled to study them.
While studying his wife and son, Byeong-chan tried everything he could to make sure that the virus didn’t spread. It was revealed that the wife and son were still alive after they were found chained in Byeong-chan’s house at the end of the series.
What Are The Hambies?
The virus managed to spread throughout Hyosan High School when a student got bit by the very same hamster that Byeong-chan experimented on. This turned him into a mindless zombie that eventually spread the virus all over the school and throughout the entire city.
Basically, the hamster was the one that started the entire zombie outbreak in Hyosan. As the infection spread throughout the city, a few students were able to keep themselves free of the infection while locking themselves inside classrooms and even on the roof of the school.
During the spread of the virus, a bully named Gwi-nam got infected. However, instead of turning into a mindless zombie, Gwi-nam was able to keep his wits but with the added effects of a stronger body and enhanced senses. On top of that, he inherited the zombies’ insatiable hunger.
Gwi-nam eventually infected the junior students’ class president named Nam-ra, who didn’t turn into a mindless zombie. The same case happened to Eun-ji. Because of this rare phenomenon, the students dubbed these half-zombies “hambies.” But what exactly is a hambie?
In one of the footage that Byeong-san recorded while studying the virus, he noticed that a few white blood cells in the host still remained even after the Jonas Virus had already killed off the weaker cells. The white blood cells, in order to adapt to the new environment, fused with the virus, which hid inside the RNA of the cells and remained dormant until the host’s body was under attack and was forced to be placed in survival mode.
Basically speaking, this happens when the person’s body is strong enough to be able to handle the Jonas Virus. Byeong-chan probably intended his son to become a hambie, but his body wasn’t strong enough to handle the virus.
In the most basic sense, a hambie has a stronger body and heightened senses that are similar to that of a zombie. The body is physically augmented to its limits, but the person keeps his mental state and is not forced into a mindless state, which is what happens in normal zombies.
But the problem is that the person still has an insatiable need to feed on living things. Still, as shown by Nam-ra, this temptation or hunger can be kept at bay through will. As such, hambies can pose as regular humans as long as they make sure that they keep their appetites in check.
Why Did The Military Bomb Hyosan City?
In one of the episodes, Eun-ji was able to escape from the school when a helicopter discovered her on the rooftop of the school. However, Eun-ji was a hambie that actually attacked people in the quarantine camp that the military set up.
Eun-ji was kept locked up by the military to observe her. Meanwhile, back at the school, a group of soldiers was sent to recover the data from Byeong-chan’s laptop so that they could learn more about the virus. When the soldiers, who were supposed to bring the surviving students home with them, learned that Eun-ji was infected, they opted not to save the students out of fear that one of them might be similar to Eun-ji.
The military commander in charge of the operation, Seon-moo, realized that it was going to be very difficult to tell whether or not someone was infected, as seen from the case of Eun-ji. As such, he decided that the best course of action to prevent the virus from making its way out of to the rest of the country was to bomb the city.
However, in episode 11, it was revealed that Seon-moo watched footage of Byeong-chan saying that the people who have turned into mindless zombies are already dead. Byeong-chan was essentially saying that it was impossible to cure the virus because you cannot cure a person that was already dead. This was what forced him to bomb the city, as he already knew that the zombies could no longer return to their regular human state.
Of course, overcome by remorse due to the fact that he also killed civilians by ordering the city to be bombed, Seon-moo killed himself after taking full responsibility for the decision of decimating Hyosan.
What Did The Survivors See At The End?
The survivors managed to escape the bombing while also finding a way through the remaining zombie horde to get to the military’s quarantine camp. While in the camp, they had to stay for four months, as the military was still trying to make sense of how long the virus would take effect.
When the military realized that the remaining survivors were clean, while also discovering that they had no way of telling how long the virus’ incubation period was, they were forced to allow the survivors to enjoy their freedom. Meanwhile, Nam-ra, who was already a hambie at this point, stayed in Hyosan the entire time.
After regaining her freedom, On-jo created a memorial site just outside the walls of the quarantine camp as a way to commemorate the people they lost during the outbreak. However, one night, she saw a campfire on what seemed to be the rooftop of their former school. She told Su-hyeok about this, as they planned to go back to the school to investigate it because On-jo believed that this was Nam-ra.
Su-hyeok informed the other four students about this, as the six of them ran away from the quarantine center to go back to their former school. They indeed found Nam-ra, who told them that she had been waiting for them. Nam-ra also told them that she wasn’t the only hambie around, as she had met other hambies and became friends with them.
Nam-ra, throughout the entire series, suffered from an identity crisis because she was an outcast and a loner. However, she told her friends that the zombie outbreak and their time together was the first time that she felt that she belonged in society. Accepting who she was and realizing that she was now an entirely different person was her greatest achievement in life, as Nam-ra grew up right before our eyes due to the events that happened to her.
Also, Nam-ra also told the group that she didn’t find Cheong-san and that there were no other survivors in the school. In a way, she confirmed that Cheong-san is indeed dead, but that could still change depending on how the writers decide to write the second season.