Having recently diving into anime, I thought that I would share my thoughts and opinions on the best horror anime I have watched to date… and that would be “High School Of The Dead”, known for its obsessive fan-service and non-stop gory action, this promises to be everything a horny little 12-year old boy could dream of, however this was not the case for me.
The fan-service was completely hilarious to me, I thought it was the perfect parody of anime that liked to showcase women’s assets e.g. High School DxD and Ikki Tousen. Starting off in Fujimi high school, it seems like just another ordinary day with the pointless teenage drama that won’t matter in three months time as the two central characters, Takashi and Rei get into a heated argument as they used to be childhood sweethearts. Takashi goes to chill off in the stairways when he notices a strange looking man approaching the gate, the school’s principal and the gym coach go over to see what all the commotion is about when the man sinks his teeth into one of the female teachers, causing her to attack the other present teachers, this starts an outbreak in the school as Takashi goes on the hunt to find his one true love, Rei.
Throughout the school day, we are also introduced to Saeko, a third year student with dark violet hair who is the head of the kendo club, she always carries around a wooden sword with her (which comes in handy when battling the undead). Then we are introduced to Saya, a second year student with bright pink hair, the daughter of a right-wing politician. She is really critical of others, and often likes to pick on people for their appearance, but she does this in a comical way which the viewer cant help but love. Then we have Kohta, and I feel like he is a character that the showrunners kind-of forces on the audience as he is very unlikable and feels like a filler character just waiting to be a zombie’s main course.
He starts off being a wimpy nerd who cant stand up for himself, but when he finds himself cornered by the undead alongside Saya, he cracks and begins tackling all the zombies with a nail gun that he hand-crafted a few scenes prior to this moment, I am personally glad that he saved Saya as she delivers some of the best one-liners of the series, but overall I wish he was fed to the dead immediately after. Last, but definitely not least, we have the ditsy school nurse, Shizuka, as she finds herself wandering the hallways after the infection takes over the school, but as more undead students and teachers begin to chase after her, she is thankfully saved by the masterfully trained Saeko, who kills most of the zombies who are after her, taking her to find a safe place within the school.
When Rei’s boyfriend gets bitten by one of the zombies in the first episode, he asks Takashi (his love rival) to end his life and ensure Rei is safe and makes it out alive, Takashi is hesitant as this was one of his close friends, but as the infection spread throughout his veins, Takashi had no other option but to murder one of his best friends as Rei watches in horror.
As Takashi and Rei fight their way through the crowds of undead students, they eventually meet up with Saeko, Saya, Kohta and Shizuka where the intense breakdown of Saya occurs. She is considered one of the stronger characters so it is hard to see her feel so defenseless. The six main characters rush to a nearby I.T. room where they take cover underneath the computer monitors, there is a television set in the room so they decide to put it on and turn it over to the news where they find that the infection has spread much, much, much further than they could have ever imagined… it’s at this point where they all find themselves in a completely hopeless situation as the virus cannot be contained, and most of Japan has been invaded by this outbreak.
I won’t go any further with the story line as I don’t want to give away a lot of spoilers to what happens in the show, but take my word for it, you will not want to miss this action-packed thrill ride filled with tons of likable characters and an amazing soundtrack. The story is flawless and the show manages to make the invasion seem so real, despite the fact that this is an animated series. This is also not just for anime fans, this was the first anime show I ever watched and I was absolutely amazed by how funny and dramatic it was, the main characters all had amazing character development, and even though there was a ton of unnecessary nudity, it didn’t feel like the story suffered from it, if anything I would say it helped capture the feel of this particular show, it is meant to be taken as a huge piss-take and farce of all things horror and anime themed. I think the makers of this anime should be proud of what they accomplished, because I would say that this is one of my favorite television shows of all time and there is so much re-watch ability to it too.
I already cannot wait to see what happens next, will there ever be a second season? I can’t say for sure because this is an older show, so i don’t know if the demand would be that high for a comeback nowadays, but even if all the fans get is a single season and an over-the-top OVA, then I’ll take it, I didn’t just watch this show, I experienced it!