You know what? Unlike Tenjho Tenge, where I didn’t know for most of the show it has fan service elements but it didn’t completely took over the show with that, I did knew before doing this review that HOTD has fan service elements added to what should have been a zombie survival anime and with zombies being the latest craze since vampires and werewolves aren’t exactly attracting fans who aren’t crazy enough to want to love them……nor fuck them for that matter (literally, and I assure you nobody wants to fuck zombies anytime soon), why wouldn’t they pass on the idea on a zombie anime? It could actually work if the material given was strong enough.
Oh well, here’s the storyline:
It’s the beginning of the end of the world as it is struck by a deadly pandemic that turns humans into zombies, euphemistically referred to by the main characters as "Them" (奴ら?). Also, please stop referring the zombies as “Them”. They’re zombies, you know they are zombies and it is not like the audience is that stupid enough to not know what a zombie is and that goes the same message to the AMC series “The Walking Dead”. That’s basically all the plot there is…a zombie outbreak and people need to survive and get the hell out of that area. The story is pure and simple although we really don’t know how the epidemic was started and gotten spread around the city. The show never had gotten that far to explain it so I’ll give it that.
As for the characters, let’s start with the main hero, Takashi Komuro, a 17-year-old 2nd year student who serves as the viewpoint character of the show. At first when he appeared he appears to be mostly “emo” and bitter, mainly because he was dumped by his childhood friend, whom make a pinky promise to marry her in the future and pinky promises are always sacred, right? Am I right But we’ll get to the girls in a few seconds. Takashi just seems like the average head leader when the zombie apocalypse occurs only more boring. He’s just not that interesting to me. Then come Kohta Hirano, the 16-year-old chubby guy in the group who does appear to be wimpy at first, but he is exactly a gun enthusiast who can actually an excellent shot and can take out zombies faster than you can say, “All the other kids with the pumped up kicks, You better run, better run, faster than my bullet.” He is one of the few characters who is actually more fun and interesting than the main hero and let’s get into this segment of the review where I introduced the main reason why people watched this show….
THE FANSERVICE FOUR. Who are the Fan Service Four? They are the main female traveling characters.
Let’s start with Rei Miyamoto, the girl just dumped Takashi and went out with his friend Hisashi and after Hisashi becomes a zombie and Takashi kills him, she thinks he’s jealous because of him, not because he can turn into a zombie and munch on your ass like a happy meal. I really hate her in that first episode because she seems like a total bitch to Takashi but she don’t always be like that and she happens to occasionally fight the zombies whenever they appeared but it don’t last that long.
I think there is where Zack Snyder got his inspiration for Sucker Punch. I am surprised Michael Bay didn’t think of this.
However, there is one female character more annoying than Rei and this is Saya Takagi. Oh my god, how I hate this character right here. Most of the time, she either whines, bitches and moans about the other people and how stupid and beneath her and how she is a genius, which is more annoying than when Snow in Final Fantasy XIII always spout out some shit about being a hero. Takagi is the most useless character on this show and I’m not kidding about that. The other two girls, the first being Saeko Busujima is skilled at close combat with a bokken and can maintain a calm and collected mood so she won’t panic as much as the others. I could say that she is the one female character that personally I favor over the others. I’m not kidding, when if one time, she dresses in nothing but an apron and a thong, I still find her more enjoyable than the other ladies and the last one Shizuka Marikawa is the ditzy school nurse of the team, or rather a porn star acting like a school nurse and she’s the adult of the team. Oh, did I forget to mention she has….(come on, you should know this already.)
Yeah, almost every girl in the show has those. Those animators must love them some T & A.
The other characters include Alice, a 7-year-old girl who was rescued by the team in episode 7, but she’s just there to add some innocence in there and that’s it. Plus, she has a dog named Zero (or Zeke in the Japanese translation). Also Koichi Shido, who runs a religious cult of some sorts but that plot wasn’t that relevant in the show so I won’t bring it up.
In short, the animation for it is very, very crisp, vibrant and colorful and the action scenes (at least, most of them that weren’t fan service ridden) was absolutely stunning and very intense and this is something I will give Madhouse credit for but most of the time for a zombie show, it has a very light atmosphere and it doesn’t fit at all.
The background music here has that scary dark tone and I like the fact they used different songs for every ending to make it not as monotonous as possible. The opening song was decent but I don’t see me hearing it too much.
FINAL VERDICT: Is this show bad as most people make it out to be? Well, I didn’t waste my time watching this but it is mediocre at some parts. Some of the characters are lousy, boring, and unlikable (except Kohta & Saeko), the fan service element can easily overshadow the main reason why people will want to tune in for this show and it’s the zombies. While having stellar art and music, it isn’t a grand work of art and mostly, I think when some people watch this, they will have lotion near them and their pants down. This is mainly for people who love fan service, IMO. (Also for a show called High School of the Dead, they only stay in the school for THREEepisodes!!)
So, High School of the Dead will get the rating of:
Planet Tyro rating: An Acquired Taste.