Kore wa Zombie OTD concludes earlier than anticipated, yet similarly, ends greater than expected – service delivered at a respectable rate, alongside limitless comedy, and story like a much admired acquaintance.
And Then There Was Sense…
Prior to this series’ airing, the only feeling felt leading up to it was a mix of disinterest and disgust – there’s enough harem comedy romance series to flood a nation, and while Kore wa Zombie’s original run was indeed lovable in a few respects, it was highly distasteful in how it seemed to have abandoned any attempt at legitimate story mid-way despite having started with such. A fatal flaw for any animation or similar creation.
Contrary to premonitions however, “Kore wa Zombie Desu ka? Of The Dead” might have a lengthy title, yet it is certainly not obnoxious – the series knew its boundaries from the beginning, as well as what it hoped to achieve.
This second season didn’t attempt to go excessively in-depth in story – it didn’t want anything of the sort, yet it didn’t abandon plot either. Kore wa Zombie OTD does have a anecdote it wants to share – and it does so brilliantly, in a fashion almost subtle as it sticks to the main elements which make this series what it is, intertwining a relevance between its extremities and points of the premise.
Within season one, our protagonist who is commendably an antonym of “generic” managed to save his lifestyle – and that doesn’t mean he merely rescued himself from harm, rather, he managed to ensure everyone around and important to him can continue living their life as they please. He combated a crisis – and gained peace for himself, the general populace of the vicinity, and of course, his harem of supernatural females. This second season is strong in that it it doesn’t disregard any of that – nothing is turned vain, the cycle doesn’t start over, instead it continues.
Keeping everything of the past in tact, Kore wa Zombie OTD exhibits the progression of Ayumu’s life beyond where he first managed to take it – he’s grasping an aftermath unsteady and uncertain, and going about it to the best of his ability, experiencing all sorts of suffering, which would have crushed a normal human both physically and spiritually, with the hopes of establishing an equilibrium in which everyone of his odd party can simply live on. A main story is definitely present in this series – it’s merely executed akin to Nichijou, through burning exaggerated hype.
However, even the ridiculously out of proportion ordeals have substance of their own – our hero, Aikawa, is quite a lax character. He’s not apathetic – he’s actually a rather smooth operator. Whatever hardship comes his way, he topples it in whatever method he can conceive – and more than occasionally, these incidents are played out to witty slapstick. This is merely how the series prefers to take care of business, which may or may not find favor with everyone – yet no matter this, one shouldn’t mistakenly think no plot is existent.
Throwing Tomatoes At Oneself
Now being such a comedy heavy series, it is of course worth noting this series’ sense of humor is top-class. Kore wa Zombie is aware of itself, it realizes it’s absurd – and so it ridicules itself. Yet in making fun of itself, the series also mocks a vast assortment of tropes indiscriminately – targeting everything from more general subjects like tsunderes, to mahou shoujos, and one-line reference jokes.
One aspect a few may not figure on their own, yet is actually so clear, is that Kore wa Zombie’s female fanfare isn’t done with the same intention as most series. Kore wa Zombie purposefully implements embellished fanservice – it’s part of the gag, the series is simultaneously catering to the eye whilst continuing a tease at the expense of the anime industry, playfully taunting how silly such scenes often are in other anime. And likewise, the contentions are no different – the fight scenes are part of the merriment.
Turning to the sounds, they’re quite transcendental in a certain respect – this series’ OP initially seemed to have a vibe which wasn’t particularly resonating on the same frequency as our preference in rhythmic vibrations. However, the opening sequence has such immense potency which becomes understood later on – a mood so fitting of the series, with each of the alternating high and low pitches of sound which are dragged out feeling as if the embodiment of the many diverse memories and events which our characters and ourselves face throughout the adventure.
Visuals aren’t to be taken lightly either – the OP’s color selection is abstract, as is the way the hues are applied to each element. Characters are brightly lit on a darker background – yet there remains a filter of darkness atop everything, giving a mood almost as if experiencing nostalgia, a recollection of the past. The characters being the single contrasting color facet in each frame of the OP gives a dreamy feel – one in which the characters are unforgettable, even as all else passes.
And as one can guess, praise for the visuals extends beyond the minute or so long OP – Kore wa Zombie OTD has illustrative qualities similar to its first season, and that means character designs distinctively praiseworthy, vivid color usage, and strongly displayed emotions as result of proficiency in line, shadow, and shape.
To say the same of the first season wouldn’t have been entirely appropriate, it’d have been a blatant lie – yet this second season, Kore wa Zombie OTD, is honestly prodigious in what it does. When thinking of excellent series, Kore wa Zombie isn’t one which would come to mind – yet this is indeed an animation exquisite and then some, however, it’s styled in such a fashion to find true appreciation by only a selective audience.
The Proper Term Is “Art”
And so we arrive at this finale of the TV series, a final episode which exemplifies all of the above stated.
Our protagonist loses himself, his memories fade – and the reason as we’re shown is that during a school day, ludicrousness flourishing as usual, a lesson goes astray with madness as the idiot loli’s attempt at chemistry results in a room full of gel which is acidic to all attire with the exception of pantsu.
The series goes all out for this last chapter – giving such a delectable sight of feminine physique for a multitude of characters, and pitting them, the tsundere specifically, in a situation comical at their expense. Better yet however, the loli schemer, “Dai-sensei” as she’s so-called, isn’t excluded from the festivities either – and it turns out that both her body and preference in pantsu are more gratuitously flavorful than ever believed.
As result of capturing a glimpse of Dai-sensei’s delicious lolita framework, she pulls an arcane maneuver on Ayumu which voids him of thought – he becomes quite empty, and this spurs response when he returns to his harem headquarters, ultimately leading to a venture into the mind of Ayumu in order to recover his regular mentality. A bit amusing, and slightly disconcerting as well, this is made possible by the loli of questionable motives, and enticing pink ribboned pantsu herself, Dai-sensei.
Flying through the world of Ayumu, it’s quite a complex place, fairly identical to outer space – and decorated with filmstrips of memories. The female three of necorimouto, vampire bishoujo, and idiot loli travel through till meeting a scribbled manifestation of Ayumu which acts as a shell. Now these four move onward till reaching a point where confronted by mythological demon kings in JRPG fashion – all of whom fall defeated to the idiot loli Haruna.
Yet a victory for the home team proves futile, as in spite of it, Ayumu does recover – however, with a demon king having taken hold of his body, resulting in an Ayumu with a soul which isn’t his own.
No one is pleased by this outcome save for the less caring, yet the necroimouto happens to be one of the most concerned of course – she breaks out of her typical character to become a masou shoujo, complete with outfit and chainsaw, then proceeds to adorably challenge Ayumu in hopes of restoring him to his normal self, the one whom she loves, and the one who once saved her own life.
Ensuing is a battle magnificently representative of everything which this series is – earnest passion streams vehemently with the necroimouto’s effort to clash against her love interest for his own sake, just as he fought for her in the season prior. Serious emotions, entirely legitimate, flare to a heated square off – yet there’s a twist.
Impossible to miss, the series’ more jocular attitude shines through the implications of the current issue faced itself – as well as other details like the chainsaw being used to brutally gore through the main character, not to mention, the necroimouto’s conviction in her action. Her diverging from her conventional ensemble into mahou shoujo gear in order for her cuteness to be concurrently highlighted whilst she fights is a prime case in point of Kore wa Zombie’s contemporary technique of getting across a story, a mix of sweet and sour.
Unsurprisingly, and all so wonderfully, the conclusion is a cheerful one – tears flowing from eyes as Ayumu is back to himself once more, and the world can now operate at its crazy acceleration once again. Life was invigorated and given meaning to the characters of Kore wa Zombie once more – and it ends with each carrying on with their mode of living ever happily in their dramatic ways.
Face value won’t say anything of series – Kore wa Zombie OTD is a universe of its own beyond comprehension till actually explored, and even then, it may still contain more than most may pick up.
A gratifying 10 episodes, rewarding with every second – and leaving us in wait of more, be it the series’ more ecstatic side, or the story conscious alter-persona, as both are difficult not to take affection with since it is both which define this series’ unique stylings of seeming nonsense, yet actual significant purpose, played to a tune free and frivolous.