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High School of the Dead Episode 3 Review – Best In Show

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High School of the Dead Episode 3 Review – Quick Summary

In High School of the Dead Episode 3, “Democracy under the Dead,” Takashi Komuro, Saeko Busujima, Rei Miyamoto, and the rest learn a terrible fact: Not only have zombies overrun the school and most of Japan. The zombies have overrun most of the world. Knowing no help would come from the outside, they resolve to look for their families in the city. But there’s a horde of zombies between them and the school minibus. Can they make it through the hungry mob? And if they can, is there any guarantee that there isn’t something worse waiting for them outside?

Note: This post may include spoilers, so be cautious.

Favorite Quote from High School of the Dead Episode 3

High School of the Dead Episode 3: Takashi did not know what he volunteered

Takashi wasn’t trying to be a hero. He was just trying to do what needed to be done. Capture from the Hulu stream.

I like to see what a normal person does when they’re shoved into an extraordinary situation. In the first episode, we saw how Takashi stepped up when he realized he had to re-kill his best friend Hisashi Igou. He didn’t want to do it. He wanted no part of it. But he saw it needed to be done, or both he and Rei would have ended up as zombies.

In this episode, we got to see Takashi step up again. What made it so cool was that the move came naturally. Our heroes were on the stairs leading to the entrance. They wanted to get to the minibus, but a horde of undead shambled between them and the door. Saya Takagi shared her discovery that the dead only responded to sound, but she recoiled from the idea of testing that idea herself.

Takashi said he’d do it. He looked like he surprised himself by saying so. Rei objected, having seen more than her fill of friends dying. She asked him why it had to be him.

“I don’t know,” he said, scratching his head (08:02). “Seriously, I don’t know.”

That’s the kind of hero I most admire. He didn’t do it for the praise or glory. He did what needed to be done, when it needed to be done, because it needed to be done.

Best in Show Moment for High School of the Dead Episode 3

High School of the Dead Episode 3: Rei was done taking crap from anyone

Unfortunately for Random Blonde Dude, Rei had had her fill of stupid for the day. Capture from the Hulu stream.

Setup: Takashi and Saeko’s Unconscious Teamwork

Before talking about my favorite moment, I just want to say how much I like this soundtrack. Even counting Re:CREATOR’s soundtrack, High School of the Dead’s soundtrack stands out. The ED for this episode, Return to Destiny, is a magnificent emotional punch in the gut. The link’ll take you to YouTube, and it looks like most of the songs are available.

My favorite moment this episode has to do with the contrast between enlightened humans working together for their common benefit and demagoguery. I hate demagoguery. If there’s a word that expresses active contempt and detestation better than hate, that’s what I feel for demagoguery. It is a stain on humanity that takes advantage of antiquated instincts left over from when we hunted in tribes. It only sort of worked then, and it causes catastrophic failure in today’s societies. Nothing good comes from it. That’s why I loved seeing an active, realistic example of its alternative, and I think it’s really the meaning of this episode title.

High School of the Dead Episode 3: Takashi and Saeko worked together well

No planning or central coordination: Saeko and Takashi held the doors because the doors needed held. Capture from the Hulu stream.

Because let’s face it. Democracy, as we’ve seen in the United States, is susceptible to demagoguery.

Did you notice, as our heroes tried to get out of the school, what happened when Takashi got to the door? Without anyone ordering him to do so, he held one door open for the others. Saeko arrived next, and she held the other door. Both saw a need, and both filled it.

Later, as the zombies swarmed them, Takashi took the lead with his baseball bat. Again, with no one coordinating their movements, Saeko took up position beside him. Together, they clear the way towards the minibus. It’s a perfect example of pushing power to the most basic unit of society: the individual.

Delivery: Rei’s Right There With Them

Our heroes were about to leave in the minibus when another group, lead by the teacher Koichi Shidou, approached. Shidou is one of those power-hungry opportunists. As soon as they were away from the school, he tried to reasonably impress upon everyone the need for a leader. Saeko and Saya both tried to point out that no, they were doing just fine by working together organically. What they didn’t say is that intelligent, team-aware individuals are the best source of decision-making capabilities. But they were short on time, so I’ll cut them some slack.

“You’ll regret this. I guarantee you’ll regret that you helped him!” Rei hissed (14:38). Judging from Takashi’s expression, he believed her.

High School of the Dead Episode 3: Rei tried to warn Takashi about Shidou

Rei warned Takashi, and he started to understand just how right she was. Capture from the Hulu stream.

One thing I’ve noticed about those who follow demagogues. They feel a need to ingratiate themselves to said demagogues. So, Random Blonde Haired Dude just started saying how much he hated Takashi. Takashi reacted with restraint, reasonably asking what the guy was talking about. There’s another thing I’ve noticed about the Followers of Demagogues. They have extremely bad tempers, especially when it comes to reason. Apparently infuriated by Takashi’s reasonable question, he lunged at Takashi.

Rei dropped him (16:28). She drove her pole into his gut, and he hit the ground. Takashi didn’t even have time to flinch. One moment, the guy was coming for him. The next, he was gagging on the ground.

They’re bright kids. They didn’t flinch from the reality around them, and they worked together. I know it’s fiction, but in the face of political corruption, seeing their unity was a breath of fresh air — enough to make it my favorite moment of the episode.

What’d you think of the sound of the dead biker’s teeth snapping inside his helmet? What was your Best in Show moment? Let me know in the comments!

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4 thoughts on “High School of the Dead Episode 3 Review – Best In Show

  1. I notice that Evil Teacher Guy has a typical villain trademark: glasses that are totally reflective, even inside a van at sunset.

    1. I think they’re special lens. I think I saw them for sale at Villains-R-Us.

      At least, that’s what my friend told me…

  2. I felt like Takashi volunteering was partly to see how Rei reacted and partly because he was still numb from killing Hisashi.

    I love that they naturally found their groove as a group and we’re then once again reminded that zombies aren’t the biggest threat in these scenarios.

    Zombies don’t have an agenda. The kill indiscriminately with no emotion or agenda. People on the other hand…

    1. “I felt like Takashi volunteering was partly to see how Rei reacted and partly because he was still numb from killing Hisashi.”

      I like that idea.

      And spot on about zombies and agendas…

      There are times I would rather fight the zombies.

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