Meet Chihiro Furuya, a high school student who has an unusually bizarre interest in zombies. Yes, zombies. And it’s no casual interest in zombies. We’re talking collecting zombie films, videogames, books, and even to the point of desiring a ‘zombie girlfriend’. From my point of view, after the midway point of the show, it almost seemed like the show was making a joke out of itself. It was like a slice-of-life without any of the seriousness. Most anime usually aim for a certain direction with their storytelling but Sankarea boldly falls in several categories including ecchi, romance, comedy, horror, gothic, sci-fi and slice of life. With this strangely obscure direction; Sankarea should have no problem in delighting its audience, especially fans who favor a range of genres. The plot is simple enough and really quite unique too. For the first four episodes I was genuinely enjoying Sankarea. There were some minor flaws, but overall it was well executed. Thanks to the fantastic pacing of events and a charming, overwrought atmosphere, Rea’s death was exceptionally well built up and was by far the best scene of the whole series.
The story tried to develop the secondary cast by aimlessly dedicating whole episodes of absolutely pointless back stories to one insignificant secondary character which the writers never utilize later on. The most infuriating secondary character was hands down, the cousin. She had no point other than terribly executed fan service and adding an utterly meaningless love triangle which again, the writers never utilize by the end of the story. If I sound repetitive, good, cause this is a point that really needs to get across. There are a few other points that kept Sankarea from being great, like the clumsy comic relief coming in at all the wrong times; especially near the end, taking a lot of tension away. But mainly it’s really just how poorly handled the secondary cast was that just sapped out a lot of the enjoyment I had with the series early on.
For an indie series, it has done a remarkable job in attracting and luring viewers with its zombie material. But Sankarea has its own quirky twist going on with its comedic elements. It has guts to satirize the genre whilst mocking geeks in a light-hearted manner and this is majorly evident through Chihiro’s obsession with zombies. However, as soon as the audience has settled themselves into the pace of the show, viewers will be surprised to discover that first impressions of Sankarea can be quite deceiving. Many would say that the anime gives off an air of romantic-comedy than a horror anime but we slowly come to realize that the horror undertone has always lurking in the shadows.
Thankfully, with all the bizarre happenings – the ending makes more sense and eventually sets up a prompt for a second season in a mysterious way. There is no word or news of it and a hard prospect to buy into, but an interesting one to entertain after the whirlwind of a story that has been told. Who knows, it might happen after with the OVA’s that add bit into the core story like how Chihiro learn how to revive the dead and about his mother. So, it is not too unlikely, but seems that way. With a little more refinement, and giving one-sided characters, well…more than one side, Sankarea could’ve been a top notch show with a little bit of everything. I guess we’ll have to wait for the second season to finish this story. To round everything up, is Sankarea a show worth watching? Yes it is, with a bit of patience however.