National Geographic is set to take a walk on the dark side with its new series on Nat Geo Wild, Dead By Dawn. The aim is to give the edutainment channel a chance to hook fans of the horror genre with a brand-new docuseries that not only makes use of the sort of visuals typically employed to maximize a horror movie's effectiveness, but it also counts the creator of The Walking Dead, Robert Kirkman, as an executive producer.
The result is a nature series that’s unlike anything else out there at the moment. Whereas most nature documentaries tend to look at both the splendor and the harsh realities of living in nature, Dead By Dawn is exclusively interested in the “terrifying real stories of life in the wild.” And just because it knows exactly what it’s doing, the Dead By Dawn promises to live up to its title by focusing on the deadly nocturnal habits of creatures in the animal kingdom.
The six-part series will break down its episodes to center on a specific setting and the dangerous inhabitants therein. For example: the first two episodes of the series, ‘The Hills Have Eyes’ and ‘Night of the Living Dead’ don’t just borrow titles from classic horror films, they incorporate that idea into the episode’s subjects. Take a look at a clip from the series, which shows in glorious slow motion that a snake doesn’t have to sink its teeth into its prey to make use of its deadly venom:
“Dead by Dawn delivers captivating and excellent visuals and storytelling while audaciously leaning into classic horror folly and memorable, distinctive soundtracks alongside suspenseful nature stories that begin just before sunset and end just after sunrise. Each episode features wildlife in a different country, from Costa Rica to Indonesia to the swamps of the USA. Once the sun goes down, creatures of the night battle for survival. It’s a countdown until dawn, and only the strongest and luckiest will live to see the sunrise. Warning: Be prepared to scream!”
The move to blend nature documentaries and horror films is a unique one that will hopefully pay off for National Geographic (or, in this case, Nat Geo Wild). With Robert Kirkman’s name attached, it’s a good bet even casual fans will find themselves wanting to tune in.
Dead By Dawn premieres Sunday, January 13 @9pm on Nat Geo Wild.