Friday, July 16, 2010

Highschool of the Dead 2: Let the bokken do the talkin'

EPISODE 2: Escape from the Dead

We're now on episode 2 and so far, so good. Highschool of the Dead is still going the usual route and it's still doing it in the most entertainingly zombie-generic way possible. This time, we get introduced to the rest of the cast, whom we only saw glimpses of in the first episode.
lolwut improv!

First up, we have Marikawa Shizuka-sensei (voiced by Fukui Yukari), the ditsy school nurse whose sizable assets are the subject of many a fanservice in this episode. Her ditsy nature gets a loyal student of hers bitten by the zombies that attack the clinic. Good thing, another student comes by in the person of Busujima Saeko, a senior and the president of the school's kendo club, who takes care of the problem with her bokken.

In the manga, Saeko is my favorite and she is certainly proving herself to be the coolest characters in the anime so far. Her intro into the scene was just awesome and doing all that damage with no more than a wooden sword (called a bokken) is wicked. The fact that she is voiced by Sawashiro Miyuki makes her character even more kick-ass. Sawashiro-san is also the voice for Kurenai Shinkurou (Kure-nai), Celty Sturlusson (Durarara!!) and God a.k.a. Dorm Manager (Maria+Holic). That last part is just hilarious!

Meanwhile, in another part of the school, self-proclaimed genius Takagi Saya (voiced by Kitamura Eri) throws herself with the resident geek/gun otaku, Hirano Kohta (voiced by Hiyama Nobuyuki) in the beginning of the zombie outbreak. At first, she orders him around, forcing him to defend the two of them from the zombies with no more than a nail gun for a weapon. However, the exigency of the situation causes Kohta to snap and sends his gun fetish into overdrive. Thinking fast, he immediately sees the potential of the nail gun and does some quick improvisations to make an effective and stable "handgun." Add to that his excellent marksmanship and Saya's quick deductive skills (she figures out that the zombies are attracted only to sound), he and Saya become one of the few survivors in their school, right along with Takashi, Rei, Saeko and Shizuka.
Saeko Busujima-senpai = made of awesome

After a hairy scene involving somebody getting drilled in the face, the group soon gather together at the faculty room. Their initial plan is to use Shizuka's car in order to make a quick getaway out of there. However, because of the addition to their group, Saeko points out that they need a bigger car. They then decide to use the school bus to get out of the school, dropping by at each of their houses, only to discover that the outbreak is worse than they thought.

So far, still faithful to the manga. Considering the genre, I'm not really expecting too much from Highschool of the Dead, other than pure unadulterated entertainment of the blood and violence kind. The fanservice, I don't mind, although I felt that even more in this episode it looked a bit out of place. But maybe that's just me. On the other hand, I love Saeko's character so if there is one last reason I'm sticking to this series, it's her. She's awesome. And if she or any of the other characters shown don't strike you much, wait for it -- there are more to come. :)