Zombieland Saga – Episode 1 [First Impressions]
What I was expecting: School Live, with idols and more zombie slaying action.
What I got: Love Live, except the idol girls are zombies and there is screamo…so it’s actually not like Love Live at all but I couldn’t think of another idol anime so sue me.
Episode 1 begins with zombie number 1. Sakura Minamoto as she begins her day in her totally normal life, she’s starting her second year of high school and she thinks that life is about to change for the better. She’s heading for a goal, a dream, she’s auditioning to become an idol. Which is all fine and well, but remember kids to look both ways when leaving your house or a truck might hit you.
Yeah, she just runs out of her house right into a truck and dies, I can’t help but remember that scene in Excel Saga when basically the same thing happens. It’s honestly one of the best ways you can start an anime. I can’t imagine a better opener.
Skip to 10 years later, she’s revived as a zombie and told that she needs to become an idol with a group of other zombies to save the Saga prefecture.
0 explanation on how she got revived. The most she gets out of, what I can only assume is the man who revived them and their idol manager Kōtarō Tatsumi is “You’ve seen a zombie movie haven’t you.” and it’s dropped. He doesn’t go any further into it. He also doesn’t tell her anything about her past.
Despite detailing the past of most of her zombie teammates. With the exception of the ‘Legendary‘ Tae Yamada. Why is she legendary? We don’t know, not all legends have a story or so Kotaro says!
She’s also the only one that’s ‘woken up’, aka, come out of their zombie like state and acting like the person they used to be. Kotaro seems to think all they need is some stimulation, so to create that, he’s going to have them perform on stage. So they get a gig at a screamo concert with a open mic policy and perform as Death Musume.
Which gets off to a rocky start, but they somehow manage their way through with…screaming and banging their heads in unnatural ways. I feel like if I was a fan of death metal/screamo music, I might find this vague offensive? Maybe not, maybe i’d be laughing just as hard because if you can’t laugh at yourself, who can you laugh at?
Sakura gets a flash of memory of her time alive as they perform and despite the fact that in the end, the performance ended in disaster…at least the girls got the stimulation they needed? Because they all wake up in a less zombie like state the next morning. Thus begins the story of zombieland Saga.
It’s absolutely not what I was expecting in the slightest. So much so that I had to double back and take a look at the summery of the series on Ani-chart again after the episode. The summery says,
“A typical morning. The usual music. Their normal lives. The peace these seven girls experience will suddenly be destroyed. By the living dead… zombies. A reality that they never wanted a part of, an amazing and terrifying zombie world. They all share one wish: “We want to live.” These girls will struggle through this saga, in order to achieve a miracle. MAPPA, Avex Pictures, and Cygames team up to bring you a juicy, 100% original anime. A timeless shocker for all audiences, a brand new style of zombie anime, will soon rise.”
Well it is absolutely right in the idea that it is a ‘brand new style of zombie anime’. Because the main characters are zombies!
Episode 1 makes it sort of hard to form a solid opinion on it. It’s a fun show to be sure, I laughed a lot actually after getting past the idea that it had completely duped me into thinking it was a different series. The problem with the first episode though is that it only showcases Kotaro and Sakura as characters. Which isn’t bad, Kotaro is very eccentric and Sakura plays a great straight woman to all the weird things going on around her. I am deeply interested in the Yakuza zombie girl. Also in Tae, because we know absolutely nothing about her!
We’ll find out about the rest of the cast in episode two now that the girls are all awakened. It’s going to be interesting for sure. Since some of these girls are totally out of the wrong time period.
I’m going to give this three episodes and if it can hold my interest, i’ll be covering it for sure. I’m tempted to just jump on it in general, but I want to get the know the other girls first. It’s cute, fun, but totally different then what I expected and you know what? That’s kind of awesome!
Possibility of watching: Guaranteed
Possibility of blogging: High
Well holy shit this took a completely different turn than I thought. They weren’t kidding when they said this would be different from your typical zombie anime. It was really weird and hilarious and I loved it. Though I’ve already seen people give this anime shit for being different, mostly because they’re idols. Man, why do people hate idols so much? :/
The first two minutes were normal but I was shocked when Sakura suddenly got hit by a truck. It was shocking but it instantly became hilarious with the death metal playing in the background. The show was a lot funnier than I thought. Actually, I had no idea what to expect going into this. The PV gave me different vibes so I came in expecting whatever, but a zombie idol group was not a possibility I could have ever imagined. But it’s not a bad thing.
I’ve seen people angry that this suddenly became an idol show, but I’m glad. We’ve gotten zombie anime before. All zombie shows, movies, video games are all the same really. A group of people are surrounded by zombie hoards in a desolate world and they have to fend them off with weapons and try to survive. We’ve seen them plenty of times, so I’m glad Zombieland Saga is taking the zombie genre and doing something completely different with it. But anime fans really hate idols. Boo hoo, there’s idols. So what?
Anyway, back to the episode. It was hilarious while the other girls acted like literal zombies while Sakura was the only normal one. Tae jumping into the crowd and trying to bite everyone was great and she’s already my favorite. I really want to find out why she’s so legendary. The performance at the live venue was weird but amazing, especially the headbanging. Their headbanging was unnatural and actually gross when they showed their necks breaking all the way back. But my god it was amazing. They didn’t even sing, they just screamed and headbanged but the crowd loved it.
Basically the plot is saving Saga, but from what? Becoming a thing in the past? What does Kotaro mean by that and who exactly the hell is he? The animation so far is fantastic, as expected of MAPPA. The girls are cute and I love that all of them are from different time periods. I’m not really sure in what direction the show is going to go, and it’s still too early to say if this will be good. It’s possible the shtick could get old soon, or like Midnight said, we don’t even know anything about the girls yet since they just awoke at the end of the episode. It just started so I can’t form too much of an opinion yet, but this show was hilarious and very surprising and I think I’m on board to check out the rest. Also, the zombie dog is adorable…when it’s not terrifying.
Possibility of watching: Guaranteed
Possibility of blogging: High