Summary: A more moody episode with tensions reaching their peak and some questions answered. Mr Shido is back and is initially let into the mansion compound. We learn Shido’s father was politician who left his mother who then commited suicide. For some reason Shido then left home to be a teacher. The tension between Rei and Mr Shido is explained, Shido’s father is having trouble with Rei’s police chief father and calls Shido to make Rei fail a grade.
At the end of the episode we cut to US nuclear submarine as they are given orders to launch the nuke. Russia and Usa are firing MIRV’s at each other and it looks like the world is heading into armageddon. A MIRV if you don’t know is a multiple independently targetable re-entry vehicle with carries multiple nukes on a single ballistic missile.
Summary: While they are now safe at Saeko’s large mansion the group are frustrated being part of a larger group who treat them as kids and don’t give them any responsibilities. Saeko is mad at her family for only protecting themselves and not coming for her. Saeko’s father is the head of an important family and leads with a strong sense of traditional honour.
Episode Summary: Separated from the group Takashi and Busujima head to Takagi’s house, they find it too tough on foot so they go to the bike shop we saw in the previous episode. Instead of taking a bike they find a ground/water vehicle in the garage. To draw the attention of the zombies so that they can sneak to Takagi’s house they drive the vehicle into a pond and make it go in circles. Next we have the awesome part of they episode (it’s funny that there always seems to be only just one) where we see some cute zombie children and Busujima completely freezes. Takashi saves her by blasting the kids away and then they take refuge in a nearby shrine. Here we learn a bit about Busujima’s past where she reveals she was attacked by a drunk while walking home from school but instead of just running away she plays along so that she could turn on him and beat him down with her training sword. They spend the night in the shrine and the next day they reach Takagi’s mansion.
Comment: This show is just so ridiculous, they creators fully know what they are doing. It is definitely not meant to be taken seriously which I probably should’ve been aware of from episode 1. They don’t seem to be going into further depth explaining the zombies and I don’t really know what the overall plot is going to be other than that the survivors are trying to reconnect with their families. I’m having fun watching it in the way that people like to watching bad movies and I’m pretty sure the creators know this too.
Episode starts on airforce one where the US president has been bitten and facing death doesn’t choose to enter the code to release the nukes. It seems the logical option as it doesn’t seem like the zombie outbreak was maliciously created by any government.
Cut back to our group of survivors who cross the river on the hummer and decide to drive to Takagi’s house which is the closest. They run into more zombies but this time they get cornered with the road blocked off by a wire mesh designed to prevent zombies from getting through. They are saved by Takagi’s mom who is a firefighter but are now separated from Busujima and Takashi.
Summary: On this episode a father and daughter seek refuge from the zombies and knock on a house with lights on. The family in the home fearing for their survival kill the man (by homemade spear) leaving his daughter alone. Hirano sees this situation from the balcony of the apartment and despite warnings to not make any noise snipes off zombies to protect the girl. Takagi goes to save the girl on his bike and we get some cool bike vs zombie action. Hirano supports Takagi sniping zombies in the way while the rest of the group prepare to leave the apartment on the hummer. Takagi while saving the girl fires of his gun alerting the horde of zombies to him. The girls and Hirano come to the rescue in the hummer and they get the hell out of there.
Impression: Based on the episodes so far I don’t have expectations that this show will be any good in comparison to the other shows going on right now. I could be spending my time watching better shows but it’s too late from a blogging perspective. It’s just mindless zombie action with some interesting aspects and that is probably just what the creators were going for.
High School of the Dead Episode 6: In the Dead of the Night
Summary: Not much to say about this episode, our group of high school survivors are taking a break in an apartment of a special forces agent who is a friend of Miss Marikawa. On the news we find out that 2 million are dead so far in Japan, with victims expected to double over the next few days (seems low since the population of Japan is over 100 million). The cool part of the episode is seeing how the cops handle the barrier at the nearby bridge. The cops are fending off zombies with handguns at first but are then authorised to use whatever force necessary and use a bulldozer to take down the zombies. The awesome violent moment of the episode is a mother holding her child who is infected, the child turns into a zombie and bites her mother.
High School of the Dead Episode 5: Streets of the Dead
Summary and Impressions:
Starts of by taking a break from the high school kids and looks at the situation elsewhere. On a remote seaside airport accessible by ship where only the high ranking officials and the staff necessary to run the airport are allowed. But despite being completely isolated someone infected must have been transported in and now zombies roam the runways. A special forces team was already on the island due to terrorism concerns and were able to secure the area, taking out zombies with a sniper rifle.
Cut to the bus stuck in traffic and Hirano and Takagi talk about survival options. They think that the only safe shelter would be smaller island areas such as Okinawa, Hokkaido and Kyushu. Planes become important to getting people there but only if airports are maintained. In the city the containment strategies by the police and armed forces are to use the bridges as choke points which are guarded by using high-powered water cannons as non lethal crowd control tactic. On the bus Mr Shido is becoming increasingly fanatical (like a cult leader) and Hirano, Takagi, Busujima and Ms Marikawa decide to leave the bus. They don’t get far before they are overwhelmed but when under attack Takashi and Rei comes to the rescue on the bike. The cool action moment of the episode is the dramatic entrance of Takashi by jumping the bike off a trailer from a lower freeway to the one above. And of course the other cool moment is a slow-mo bullet scene where Hirano get to use the gun Rei took from the dead cops in the previous episode. After clearing the present danger Ms Marikawa suggests they take shelter in a friend’s apartment nearby. This friend of her’s is the ace military sniper, who we see in the beginning of the episode, and she has a Hummer who Marikawa calls a tank. Looks like next episode will be low on action and based on the preview it is the anime cliche bath episode.
High School of the Dead Episode 4: Running in the dead
This is a recap episode for the first half with the second half focusing on Rei and Takagi as they make their way to the rendezvous point. It is definitely way too early to be showing a recap of the past events but it is well cut and over fairly quickly. They show the timeline of events interspersed with some cuts to present time. There are also some nice backgrounds of a zombified Japan such as shots of a ramen restaurant and an a wrecked beamer. And we get a quick scene of Mr. Shindo as her continues to be a psychotic perv. capitalising on the fact that he is in charge.
In the second half of the episode Rei and Takagi as they travel to meet up at the police station come across a crashed cop car slammed into by a truck. Rei salvaged the cop’s gun and show some her knowledge with weapons (as the daughter of a cop). Next they stop to fill up on gas, in Japan some of the gas stations are self-service where you have to enter cash or a card before you can fill up. They are out of money so Takagi goes into the store and fulfills a fantasy of many by smashing open a cash register with a baseball bat. Meanwhile a crazed survivor sneaks up on Rei and holds her hostage.
Overall it was an alright episode, pretty pointless but there are some parts worth watching. It is heavy with emotions of Takagi reflecting on the events of the past 24 hours telling us a bit more about the characters and their state of mind.
Episode Summary: The zombie pandemic has been confirmed as having spread all over the world. In the U.S. the white house has been evacuated to a naval warship, Beijing is ablaze and Paris & Rome are a disaster with mass lootings. In London the authorities are doing a better job at maintaining public safety while no one has heard anything from Moscow. Everything was alright in the morning highlighting the fact that it has spread over the world in a matter of hours. The nurse brings up that the pandemic is akin to black death in 14th century or the spanish flu but much more deadly. They also speculate whether the zombies will decompose after a few weeks in the sun but aren’t sure if normal rules will apply to the zombies. On the plus side they do confirm that the zombies only react to sound not sight or smell.
As they make their to the bus they pick up another group of survivors who are clearly not as zombie ready as our lead group. One of then cause an echoing sound that attracts all the zombies in the school to their location. When they reach the bus another group of survivors rush to them including another teacher Mr Shindo. Rei immediately shows her disgust towards Mr Shindo and unsuccessfully tries to urge them to go ahead with out him. Why does Rei hate Mr Shindo so much? There are definitely some history between them but his first action in the show sets up his character, as he is guiding his group of students to the bus one of them fall and all he does is a foot to face saying “that’s it for you“.
They all get on the bus and leave the school and soon after Mr Shindo tries to take charge to become group leader. Here is where the democracy in the episode title comes into play. Mr Shindo is voted as leader with the majority of votes. Rei can’t handle this and gets off the bus, Takashi follows and a runaway bus full of zombies crashes near them. They get separated from the bus and plan to meet up at the police station at 7pm later in the day or at the same time the next day.
The end of the episode involves the best part of the series so far (for me), a crazy awesome encounter occurs with a motocycle helmet wearing zombie. I don’t know why this was so awesome to me but let’s hope there are more moments like this.
The second episode of H.O.T.D. introduces us to the full cast of survivors at the school as they find a way to survive and escape. The show is sticking to the classic zombie action genre, having a whole bunch of characters with different strengths and weaknesses defeating zombies in interesting ways as they aim to get in contact to their family.
Full cast of characters:
Kohta Hirano: The fat guy of the bunch is an otaku military gun hobbyist.
Saya Takagi: Pink haired arrogant A student, the brains of the group.
Saeko Busujima: Captain of the Kendo Team, has adapted the fastest and the most level headed of the group.
Miss Marikawa: Blonde ditzy school nurse, age wise the adult of the group but her personality is not suited to a leader role. The medic of the group.
In addition to Takashi Komura and Rei Miyamoto introduced in first episode.
There are quite a few cool moments in the episode in terms of the ways they defeat the zombies. Hirano and Takagi stock up on improvised weapons in mechanics room where Hirano modifies an air powered nail gun for stability and accuracy. Takagi later uses a hand drill in desperation to take down a zombie. Takashi uses a fire hose to clear the zombies on the roof. Saeko uses her bokken to deliver a quick blow to the head which seems to kill them without taking off their head.
Takagi does some experiments to learn more information about the zombies finding out that they only react to sound and are blind. They are not sure yet if they are attracted to heat sources.
Episode ends with them barricading themselves in the teacher’s office. Their plan is to take one of the mini buses and go to each of their homes to see if their family are there. On the TV is a news broadcast about the outbreak, they mention that 10,000 are dead in Saitama, riots are occurring everywhere and that emergency defensive measures are in place. And of course in well versed zombie movie tradition the newscast is interrupted by a zombie attack.