Escape from Ward Z29

Escape from Ward Z29


By Amanda Asquith

Synopsis: Running,  good. Scissors,  good. Zombie-nurses running after you with scissors … bad.

Location: St Andrews Community Hospital, Scotland

Escape from Ward Z29

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  6. Drama-conflict, (is it sophisticated, enticing, engaging?)
  7. Action
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Comment below to assist the writer with your ideas and issues with their work, (play nice, leave the biting to the infected).

Adventure is calling… what will you do?

4 Responses

  1. I really like the ward setting. Hospitals give an eery feeling to settings, so I love the idea! 🙂

    I love how it’s left open as well, would love to see this scene made. 🙂

  2. Thanks for the comments guys.
    Nick – the ‘Z’ has no reference to anything zombie – just because I’ve been around hospitals a lot in the past and at the moment and it was a letter and number, nothing else. Also, post-surgery drips for saline/antibiotics are pretty standard and patients who need specialised care are in different wards to those in recovery. And having food would mean there’s already been activity in the ward before the infected nurses arrive – something I wanted to avoid. I wanted to plunge them all from rest into a fight or flight situation. I understand a few things you point out, and it’s good to hear the feedback.

  3. Day one – Escape from Ward Z29 by Amanda Asquith- Review – Wednesday May 22nd 2013

    The opening page has a stillness about it that tells the viewer something is coming. I was sold on that.

    What we are yet to see is an interesting and engaging transition due to the take-over of the bodies by the parasites. Also, the choices made by the infected or those controlled by the parasites show little fight-back or range.

    This is not just a problem with ‘Escape’. It has been universal with all the content created and this is a good thing as it identifies that this is a challenging area that requires focus and development. So, getting it wrong helps us to get it right and that’s the purpose of development.

    ‘Escape’ is very film-able. Hospital wards are classic horror locations. The action needs choreographing. That is also a development issue.

    My experience of the lead character is that her choices are wholly realistic. We are shifting from a resting character who is injured and who has just awoken to an overwhelming attack and the unknown.

    I do not view the character badly based on their choices. She lives to fight another day and I am encouraged by the end of the work that she finds a way out. That tells us there is more to come for this character. I did want the character to escape so that means I must have been engaged.

    You could make heroic choices up-front but in chaos, it’s all you can do just to survive plus this also gives the character somewhere to go if we see her again.

    The title doesn’t work or not work for me.

    We are experiencing a more horror genre content and that is probably an issue with brief from the HOD so I wouldn’t discount the work based on that but the title doesn’t gain any extra points either.

    I’m giving this one 7/10 and well done to Amanda for revealing flaws we must address.

  4. Hey Amanda; some general thoughts on the above script.

    The first and most pressing I think is that the first page contains little to no conflict, which means by the time the characters are talking about lost cell phone reception at the top of page 2, I’m tuning out. I was thinking; what if Lena needs help feeding herself? What if Gianna and her don’t get along to begin with, but through the act of Gianna agreeing to help feed Lena (after the nurses fail to respond), they develop something of a report?

    (Doing something along those lines would address another suggestion I had, which was to heighten the personal connection between Gianna and Lena early on, so that when Lena is killed, there is an emotional impact to the scene. At the moment, when Lena dies, it means next to nothing to the audience because we know nothing about her, or her connection to Gianna).

    I think you need to clarify two things within this scene and that is 1) what are the nature of Gianna’s horse-riding-accident injuries that she’s being kept in hospital after her arm is in a cast, hooked up to a drip? If it’s just a broken arm … why hasn’t she been discharged? 2) Give us some indication – beyond the TV making a reference to the southern hemisphere not seeing the shower – that these characters are in the northern hemisphere. Something like Lena having a scarf of a sports team; anything to explain that to anyone watching this fresh without the benefit of the many briefs on this site.

    Gianna doesn’t really fight to save Lena, but she gets all in a huff when that nameless 65 year old is attacked. Then, Gianna appears to run away and save herself, leaving the others to be killed(?) by the nurses. This is a problem, because within 3 pages you’ve made Gianna a dangerously unsympathetic character – not mysterious, just cowardly – who will sacrifice others to save herself. And I don’t know that I’d want to see more stories about her, regardless of the cliffhanger ending. If the intention is that everyone is already dead by the time Gianna hides in the bathroom, that must be explicit. I’m not saying we need to see everyone’s death on screen (although, we do see 65 year old woman crack her head open on the door). But seeing as they’re in a hospital, feasibly they could be hooked up to heart monitors, and as the carnage increases, what was a steady atmospheric bleeping from the machines becomes a symphony of sustained notes, signalling everyone but Gianna is dead? However you chose to represent that, it should be clear that she has no choice but to flee, and is not just abandoning the others to their fate.

    I don’t love the title – Escape from Ward Z29. The “Z” part bothers me … like it’s too on the nose that we’re supposed to link this event to the beginning of a zombie outbreak or something? Just my thoughts.


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