Monday, 19 July 2010

Highschool of the Dead - Episode 3

By the end of the previous episode of Highschool of the Dead we were already well aware that the current zombie apocalypse reached some way beyond the high school which has been its centrepiece thus far, but come the beginning of this episode we're quickly treated with a round the world view that shows that this particular "pandemic" (if that's what you wish to call it) is a global one. Apart from London of course, where order was restored thanks to the liberal use of Jammy Dodgers and Earl Grey.

Anyhow, this leaves our survivors within the school to decide on their next plan of action, where it's agreed that the best way forward is to check on their various families before finding a safe place to move to from there. On their way to the front gate and the school's car park, we meet another bunch of survivors but don't learn any of their names - This is zombie movie code for "don't get comfortable, you're just meat popsicles here". So it goes that one member of this group almost gets everyone killed by making a lot of noise clattering his weapon of choice around before biting (see what I did there?) the bullet himself, leaving the others to fight and run their way to the safety of the school coach. This sees yet another bunch of survivors appear, including a teacher named Shido who might as well have worn a tie with "Don't save me, I'm evil" embroidered on it - Sadly, he wears no such thing and thus he's allowed onto the coach, much to Rei's disgust.

It's this disgust that leads to Rei and Takashi being split up from the rest of the group after a simple argument is interrupted by the two things that this series has been lacking so far - Explosions and zombies on fire. This scenario leaves the aforementioned duo to make their own way into the centre of the city while the remainder continue by coach, hopefully leaving us with twice as much awesome fun to concentrate on next time around.

To be honest, I've probably covered the most pertinent point of this particular episode in terms of its quality - In case you missed it, this instalment includes big explosions and zombies on fire. That aside, Highschool of the Dead continues to do everything right within its limited scope, ramping up the tension where it can while still serving up intense bursts of zombie (or occasionally human) splattering action, before throwing in the requisite nasty guy who wants to take charge and topping the whole experience with one lingering underwear shot before everyone forgets about the fan service. All of this makes for a rip-roaring dollop of tense excitement that doesn't suffer in the slightest from its predictable characters, quite simply because when the world is turned on its head it doesn't matter if you're smart or dumb, fat or thin, nice or nasty - If you get caught, you're dead meat, pure and simple. It's that basic rule that makes this show so scintillating to watch... oh, and did I mention the zombies on fire?


Krungie said...

Shall I repeat myself once again? Ok. A little Dawn of the Dead de javu anyone?

Our main survivors bring along a pack of nameless zombie snacks a.k.a the useless students and heartless Shido. Even the bus scene was bloody similar. I love how they also put heartbeat BG music as to make it more suspenseful. Well too bad. You can't make this series any better than it already is.

The animation, blood, zombies, fanservice, villians and snac- I mean, characters are perfection. Madhouse proves that the manga does the blood spewing scenes no justice. The animation here is what sets this anime apart from any other zombie anime, manga or movie for that matter.

Mushz said...

What's interesting is that the zombies die after being lit on fire - a potential weakness?

Also, maybe the final goal of the story is to FLY ALL THE WAY TO LONDON where there's ORDER! I mean, c'mon, at the beginning they crawled, then they walked, ran, and now they're on a minivan (and a motorcycle). The logical progression is then van, bus, boat, and then FREAKING AIRPLANE

Robert said...

Of course London maintained order - we're used to regular irruptions of ravening shambling monstrosities. It's called throwing-out time on Friday night. :p