HAPPINESS on Netflix is a South Korean apocalyptic zombie series with 12 hour-long episodes. The story takes place in the near future and even deals with the pandemic aftermath. Read our full Happiness series review here!

HAPPINESS is a new Netflix series from South Korea (org. title: Haepiniseu). It was released in its native country in 2021, but fans of character-driven zombie stories will want to check it out now that it’s on Netflix.

The series has 12 hour-long episodes, so there is a lot of story to tell. Also, quite a few characters, but only a few are main characters. Fortunately, the characters are well-written and wonderfully portrayed, so the long episodes never feel too long.

Continue reading our Happiness series review below. Find all 12 episodes on Netflix from December 12, 2023.

From one virus to the next

In Happiness, we get a story that takes place in the near future. Infectious diseases have become an integrated part of our world, so when this new virus seems to spread, people are thinking of the most recent pandemic.

No one is expecting something that’s more along the lines of The Walking Dead.

However, that’s not far from what is happening. It all begins with a failed pneumonia treatment drug called “Next”. This very official drug has caused a worldwide pandemic. It’s called the Lytta Virus but also known simply as “mad person disease”.

Once infected, you get very thirsty. However, it’s not the kind of thirst that water can quench. Instead, there’s a need for blood. And yes, obviously this sounds more like a vampire, but the infected are definitely of the zombie-like kind.

After short and wild bouts of insanity and bloodlust, they regress into a zombie-like state. Basically, they go from Train to Busan-zombies to more of a The Walking Dead -variety.

As always, the military and police try to contain this new virus. Both by quarantine measures and via more drastic methods. Civil rights groups are quick to protest against them. Also, the people infected do switch between being wild zombies and more docile human-like beings.

This is confusing to the population at large. What is never confusing, is the fact that – as always – you need to fear the other human beings as much as any zombies.

Happiness – Review | Netflix | Korean Zombie Series

Will Happiness get a season 2?

While the zombie genre mix series from South Korea has been a hit, there are no plans to make a season 2 of Happiness. However, now that Netflix has acquired the series, this could easily change.

The original production company has moved on to other projects as is usually the case. These South Korean series are often made as limited series. However, even limited Netflix series can end up getting more seasons if they’re popular enough.

Squid Game is a very good example of this. That’s why nothing is a given with Happiness once it has become part of the Netflix family. Of course, it’s also possible that we will simply get a US remake with more seasons. Only time will tell.

In any case, I can reveal (without doing spoilers for the Happiness series) that it does have an actual ending. The South Korean series Happiness delivers a complete story over 12 episodes, so you will get answers and an actual ending.

I know this is important for many viewers before starting a new series.

Watch Happiness on Netflix now!

This South Korean series (org. title: Haepiniseu) was written by Sang Woon-han and directed by Ahn Gil-ho. The director went on to direct the South Korean Netflix series The Glory which is also worth checking out.

As this apocalyptic zombie series evolves, it has a touch of Sweet Home or #Alive. The main characters are living in close quarters with others for much of the time, which makes for lots of issues and conflict.

With 12 hour-long episodes, there is plenty of time to dive into the various issues. I mean, a series like The Walking Dead managed to carry on for (too) many seasons in this manner, so obviously 12 episodes isn’t too much for a limited series.

If you’re a fan of South Korean productions or zombie stories, be sure to check this out. If you’re a fan of both – such as the Netflix series All of Us Are Dead – then you will definitely want to watch this.

The Happiness series is on Netflix from December 12, 2023.


Creators: Yang Ji-eul, Lee Myung-han
Director: Ahn Gil-ho
Writer: Han Sang-woon
Stars: Han Hyo-joo, Park Hyung-sik, Jo Woo-jin


Residents of a high-rise building fight for survival when a deadly disease breaks out and turns the infected into blood-lusting zombies.

I write reviews and recaps on Heaven of Horror. And yes, it does happen that I find myself screaming, when watching a good horror movie. I love psychological horror, survival horror and kick-ass women. Also, I have a huge soft spot for a good horror-comedy. Oh yeah, and I absolutely HATE when animals are harmed in movies, so I will immediately think less of any movie, where animals are harmed for entertainment (even if the animals are just really good actors). Fortunately, horror doesn't use this nearly as much as comedy. And people assume horror lovers are the messed up ones. Go figure!
Karina "ScreamQueen" Adelgaard
Latest posts by Karina "ScreamQueen" Adelgaard (see all)