Separated from the classmates that survive, Takashi and Rei find a new kind of monster in the world.
What They Say
Running in the DEAD
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
After several minutes of recap material, taken from Takashi's perspective as he remembers the initial day of the incident, we're taken back to where Takashi and Rei are racing along on their motorcycle trying to figure out how to get back with everyone after the bus incident in the previous episode. The night is here and things feel even more dangerous as you see the infected walking through the streets. The lights of the city of the dead at night causes it to be even more surreal and creepy. The various flashback elements eventually bring us back to the present as we see how Z-Day has played out not only with the characters we know but also with those who have also survived, and with the others Takashi was with who are now part of a larger convoy being protected to get somewhere safe.
In a bit of a change from how shows like this operate, Rei is proving to be quite the strong female lead character as she does what needs to be done. When she and Takashi come across a crushed police car with gas leaking about, she has no problem in searching through the car to find whatever she can before something happens, such as getting handcuffs and a gun along with a few odds and ends. Takashi isn't exactly being a milquetoast considering what he did to Hisashi and others at the school, but he's still more cautious than she is in some ways. Both of them are moving at different speeds to adjusting to the reality of the new world, but Rei is definitely adjusting a bit faster and coping with it in her own way.
Even in a world filled with the dead, the most dangerous creature is still a normal man and there's an interesting face-off that happens. While the two are trying to get some cash so they can get some gas, since neither has cards or money on them, Rei gets caught by a guy whose gone a bit nuts with what's happened and is intent on taking Rei for his very own since he's going to need a woman to survive in this insanity. The guy is just as bad if not worse than Them since he's crude and still in possession of much of his mind but he's dealing with the end of the world in a different way, one that Takashi and Rei have to figure out how to work with in order to survive as well by making even harder choices than they have already.
High School of the Dead has a good episode overall as it takes Takashi and Rei on their journey a little further. That they find things to be even more wary of isn't a surprise as it helps to make them a bit harder but also shows how little it takes to push a person to do something cruel, even if necessary in its own way. The flashback material here felt like a bit much considering it's only episode four, but I liked the opening piece a lot with the military flyby that shows they're out there and gathering intelligence where they can. With the show dealing with the first day and the first night so far, there's a lot to like here and it leaves you even more chilled as it moves forward. Definitely a good episode, but it just had too much flashback material.
Japanese 2.0 Language, English Subtitles
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70" LCoS 1080P HDTV, Dell 10.1 Netbook via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.