Since Halloween is coming, I decided that it’s probably a great time to review Gakkou Gurashi. Despite being a Manga Time Kirara title and a schoolgirl series, it’s not your typical one. Sure, the first episode seems deceiving, but it throws a zombie apocalypse into the mix.
While there is also a live action movie, which I will review later, I wonder how the anime turns out.
Takiya Yuki is an ordinary and cheerful girl who loves her school. While she thinks everything is normal, everything is just. Yuki, Kurumi, Yuuri, and Megumi after school find themselves the start of a zombie apocalypse. This is while the student body started getting infected.
Eventually, they decide to form the School Living club. As expected, the club room has everything that allows them to survive for a while creating a safe zone in the school. Eventually, they went to the mall looking for survivors and managed to find Miki, a second-year student. She joins the School Life club as they live a close to normal life in a zombie hellscape.
Sure, Gakkou Gurashi looks like your typical Manga Time Kirara school girl anime, but it’s not. While there are a lot of lighthearted moments such as girls trying on clothing and swimsuits along with that pool episode, looks can be very deceiving. There are a lot of dark moments, especially at the start of the zombie apocalypse and towards the end. Not to mention, there is the emotional toll. You can see why Yuki decides to go into her own world to protect her sanity.
Obviously, this not too surprising since one of the writers who worked on the story is from Nitro+. This is same company that one of its creators, Urobuchi Gen brought us Madoka Magica. It’s obvious how that turned out.
As expected, the pairing that stood out to me is Miki and Kei besides Yuuri and Kurumi. Of course, Yuki and Kurumi have several moments of them together, such as holding hands, that promise they made, and sleeping next to each other.
Of course, Miki’s relationship with Kei is tragic. It’s mostly for the fact that Kei had cabin fever. As a result, she doesn’t want to continue to shelter in place after several days. This is obviously the reason why I don’t have hope in humanity if a zombie apocalypse happens. Just look at the current pandemic with people refusing to stay home when vaccines are not available and refusal to wear masks. Now, you have anti-vaxxers not wanting to take the vaccine and some eventually passing away from Covid19
Eventually, the drama and the horror settle in when the zombies breach the barricades. Kurumi looks bad-ass adorable, who almost looks like Tedeza Rize. She has a shovel, which she uses to bash zombies with.
However, seeing Megumi as a zombie was too much and zombie Megumi bites Kurumi. As a result, she slowly starts to turn into a zombie. While the emotional toll on Yuuri losing hope on her and eventually almost coming down to mercy killing her. However, she can’t bring herself to do it. Thankfully, Miki managed to face the horde of zombies and bring back the antidote from the basement bunker in time.
Overall, Gakkou Gurashi is an interesting take on the school-girl genre and some apocalypse mixed in. Sure, the story brings a lot of dramatic and grim moments, but it gives us some hope or despair how you look at it if a zombie apocalypse happened. If you don’t mind a dark cute school-girl anime with some zombies thrown into the mix or enjoy zombie survival anime, this won’t disappoint.