When i was at work i got recommended this series by one of my co-workers who had seen this a while back, looking it up the series was promising and a few days later i watched it in one sitting.
The story is very frantic as the series starts of with a group of students as they notice that something odd is happening at their school and soon get to know that there is a growing pandemic that soon encapsulates the whole world. It feels almost like Left For Dead as along the way they find certain “safe houses” that, as in games, are somehow surrounded by impossible numbers of zombies for them to cross. You get a few minor side plots, one following a pointlessly political teacher who turns students into faithful slaves, but is otherwise completely tangential to the main plot line. There are a few break episodes and other moments where the characters take a breather and you get to learn a bit about their personalities through their interactions with each other. However, these aren’t very often and the series ends episodes on cliffhangers repeatedly; I’d recommend just chaining it as it isn’t terribly long.
The story does a decent job of filling in the background setting by showing additional viewpoints including policemen desperately holding a bridge, an agent at an island airport, and some shots in the US and other locales, giving a completely hopeless picture as there really doesn’t seem to be any safe haven. At least there are no deus-ex-machina moments, when all of a sudden, due to divine intervention, everything is solved. What I mean by this is that all the unlikely events are a combination of the characters’ wits, skills and luck, not some uber anti-zombie bomb falling from the sky, or something like that. All the timely and unlikely rescues are, as a matter of fact, rather possible with human wit and effort, albeit unlikely.
The character development was strong at first, showing how the reality of the situation took time to sink in, but then gradually faded away as each character fell into the role of chopping up zombies to make the next “check point”. There are definitely some character relationships going on as this eventually turns into a semi-harem as all three girls have a thing for the main male lead. I will admit that Takashi has more balls than a lot of male leads in series these days. However, they never really have time to “solidify” any of these relationships so you can slap a big “pending” onto that category. The characters are quite varied, you pretty much get a little bit of everything. You get a fat dude with a gun fetish, a bookworm, a sword warrior, the ditzy school nurse, and the girl you wish you had but could never get. However, despite the break scenes where stuff slows down, you never really get a sense of the characters, a chance to relate to them; all you notice is that the girls are a bit too bouncy in certain areas.
Now that i have talked a bit about about the story and the characters i am going to talk a bit about the main problem i had with the show which is the BIG amount of fanservice that it provides to the audience. There is something i would like to call good fanservice and bad fanservice. Good fanservice is when now and then you get to se characters in either we T-shirts and their boobs showing, bad fanservice is when you get to se this every few minutes all the time in almost every episode, it would appeal a lot to the ecchi crowd with an overabundance of fan service shots including endless panty shots and bouncy body parts in addition to many partial nudity shots, doesn’t help that the girls wear paper clothing.
Now that my little rant is over i have to say that the quality of the show is very good. You get a very good mix of colors, changing drastically with the mood. Character designs are fairly good although proportion-wise the females are obviously designed to give out fanservice as i mentioned above. This series has a lot of fighting involving both melee with a variety of instruments as well as a full arsenal of firearms for gun enthusiasts. There will be decapitations, amputations, and a lot of other pseudo gore.
To conclude my review this was a decently entertaining watch, though I could tune out most of the fan service. The plot line was decently engaging though there aren’t too many surprises when you’re already in a zombie apocalypse. An attempt to throw some base comedy sometimes lightens the mood though I would have preferred them to keep the serious tone, and stick to a more horror-based approach. It’s still a fun watch as you follow the group on an uphill battle for survival. Definitely looking forward to the next installment, if it ever comes. The manga is still ongoing so you can’t really expect the anime to give a proper ending, which was a little frustrating cause all you know is that they’ve been lucky so far. It will be interesting to see how they follow up on this one (the OVA really doesn’t count).