At first i was hesitant about watching this anime. Because I usually hate zombie flicks. I skimmed over the title for weeks. Eventually the ratings and recommendations got to me, so i sat down and watched it. 24 hours later, i had finished the whole show, and just sat back, eyes wide, trying to digest everything i had just seen.
Highschool of the Dead follows Takashi Komuro, a student who witnesses a zombie infestation knocking at the front gates of his highschool. As you watch the show, you witness the world as we know it, completely change from one we all know, to one filled with horror, death, and surpising character development.
This anime far surpassed my expectations. as i said, zombie flicks are a type of cinema that i rarely enjoy. Many of them have so much of the same plotline, shallow characters and depressing overtones, that i can't enjoy them. With Highschool of the Dead, This is not the case. The only thing about the show that I had a hard time digesting was that it started like most zombie horror shows, guy sees zombie, zombie bites person, zombies start popping up like rabits all over the place. Although the outbreak starts out the same as most, this show goes in it's own direction with great pacing, and a surprising number of people who rationally try to overcome the terror that life is presenting to them.
The movements of the characters was my favorite aspect of this anime's animation. Every character seemed to have their own way of moving; Takahi's masculine walk, Saeko's sharp, serpentine movements when wielding her sword, Kouta's short, precise movements when he was firing his weapons, and Rei's cat-like fluidity. Even the zombies moved cool! " lets put this zombie in a head-lock to keep him from biting people...uh oh, the zombie has PULLED AN EXCORCIST, and is now staring me in the face about to eat my face off!" I never noticed movement as a way to express a character's personality before this anime, it definitely opened my eyes about this aspect of animation.
The biggest problem i did have with this anime does happen to fall into the animation category.......This anime has moments where the line of decency and the line pornography are sometimes blurred. I mean, i am a guy, it pleased me to see it. But I feel that a show does not need an absurd amount of panty-shots, and boobs-in-face in order to be clasified as a good show. I feel like the mature content of Highschool of the Dead degraded the worth of this show.
I have nothing against this show's soundtrack, or opening/ending songs, but I also have nothing outstanding to say about them. Overall...they were forgetful. If any of the songs were to play on the radio, i would not recognize them as being attached to Highschool of the Dead. The sound was good and better than average. But not amazing, or memorable
Ah! Now i can get to my favorite aspect of this show, the characters! Takash is one of my favorite protagonists of all time now! The way they introduce him in the show is amazing, within the first ten minutes, i wanted to give the guy a hug. I totally felt the betrayal and sadness that was overwhelming him in the second scene of the first episode. and when all hell broke loose, i admired him for first seeking out the two people most important to him in the highschool - even though they had both betrayed him. A great hero for a great show. Every character in this anime develops! It's what i wish every anime had! Even the main bad guy has depth! - you know an anime is good when the bad guy has depth and development.
Not only do i love the depth and the development of all the characters, i love the choices they make, and the consequences they take. Although they are in a world on the brink of colapse, it's still a world that has good people. and i love the focus that this anime has on that!
Highschool of the Dead has become one of my favorite anime's. I was very impressed. The quality of the character work is what really sold me on this anime, and everything else was like a complementary dessert that complemented the whole meal. I would recommend it to anyone who likes high quality, deep characters, and unique twists in a usually cliche' genre