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High School of the Dead Episode 5 Review – Best In Show

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High School of the Dead Episode 5 Review – Quick Summary

In High School of the Dead Episode 5, “Streets of the Dead,” Saya Takagi and Kouta Hirano considered their next move. As they did, the teacher-turned-demagogue Koichi Shidou tightened his hold on the other students in the bus. The situation was quickly becoming intolerable, but what are our heroes’ options? If they take Saeko Busujima and Shizuka Marikawa off the bus, where will they go? Meanwhile, Takashi Komuro and Rei Miyamoto ran into more trouble. A gang got their hands on shotguns, and they were shooting at anything that moved — including Takashi and Rei! Can they survive the attack long enough to try to meet their friends at the police station?

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

Favorite Quote from High School of the Dead Episode 5

High School of the Dead Episode 5: The dub and sub Saeko have very different motivations

Saeko, whether in the sub or the dub, maintains a very matter-of-fact demeanor despite the world going to hell all around her. Capture from the Hulu stream.

The Quote, Sub Perspective

I have a feeling going through a zombie apocalypse with someone would give you a lot of insight into their personality. For example, we know that Koichi Shidou, as a teacher, would have had to behave a certain way while within school. If he tried his “let’s rule the world through seducing these students” trick while school had been in session, the administration would have fired him. Maybe had him arrested. In other words, the threat of force kept him in line.

Other people, though, go in the opposite direction. What we’ve seen of Saeko so far suggests that she was a quiet student who didn’t get into any trouble. Did she choose that direction because she was afraid the school would punish her otherwise? I don’t think so.

When she said she wanted to meet up with Takashi, Saeko triggered Saya’s tsundere mode. To cover her spontaneous reaction, Saya asked if Saeko were worried about her own family. 

Saying her only living parent was overseas, Saeko said (11:40), “…all I need to keep right now, other than the promise I made Komoru, is my life.” 

Saeko wanted to keep her promise because she had made her promise. As civilization crashed down around them, she intended to keep her word. Her quiet, matter of fact confidence actually gave me chills. 

It impressed the heck out of Saya, too.

The Quote, Dub Perspective

High School of the Dead Episode 5: Saya's reaction means different things in the dub and sub

Which quote was Saya reacting to here? The dub or the sub? They seemed very different! Capture from the Hulu stream.

In most cases, I prefer the sub, because I love the sound of the spoken Japanese language. It’s so lyrical! It also makes me glad I don’t have to speak it. Lyrical I ain’t.

In this instance, Saeko’s dubbed quote was very, very different than the sub version. Here’s what she said at the same place as my favorite quote:

“So the only people I really need to be worrying about right now is myself and Komoru. Really, I don’t care about anybody else!”

The voice actor, Taylor Hannah, really sold the line. But it gave a very different spin on Sakeo’s character. It gave a different reason for Saya’s reaction, too. In the subbed version, I had the impression that she just realized how out-classed Saeko made her feel. In the dubbed quote, it almost seemed that Saya now felt leery of Sakeo.

The next lines were even more different. In the sub, Saeko talked about how her father encouraged her to be honest. In the dub, she said, “And just look at me! I mean seriously, if any one of us is going to make it out of here alive, it’s going to be me!”

Both interpretations work! It’s just an interesting difference.

Best in Show Moment for High School of the Dead Episode 5

High School of the Dead Episode 5: The scene was over the top but gloriously awesome

Talk about high marks for style! They made it look easy, too! Nice sky, too. Capture from the Hulu stream.

Setup: The Nail Gun, Beacon of Hope!

The previous episode was all about Takashi and Rei trying to stay alive by themselves until they could try to meet back up with the others. They’d found a police officer’s pistol and some spare ammunition, but Takashi had never fired a gun before that night. The young man clearly felt uneasy with the weapon, though he did prove he could fire it if he needed to.

In this episode, the two had to get through a knot of gang members who decided the world was ending, so they’d shoot anything that moved: zombies or living humans, it didn’t matter to them. When I first watched this episode, I wondered why Takashi didn’t try to go around them. Then I considered that the gang had made so much noise that they probably attracted throngs of zombies. So, going around was probably even more dangerous. Doubly so, since Takashi and Rei were on a motorcycle.

High School of the Dead Episode 5: Rei and Takashi were starting to run out of options

Takashi and Rei ran into one thing after another. This is clearly not a world where two people on a motorcycle could be remotely safe. Capture from the Hulu stream.

They tried to cross one bridge and found it over-crowded. They tried another, but found conditions there to be the same. Rei had become so anxious she snapped at Takashi. He had become so anxious he snapped back. What neither of them knew was that their friends Saya, Saeko, and Kouta had abandoned the bus as Koichi Shidou tightened his control over the other students. Those same students had started to see him as a cult figure. Poor fools.

Saya, Saeko, Kouta, and Shizuka tried to cross the bridge nearest Rei and Takashi, but they ended up in the middle of a zombie horde. As they fought off the horde, Kouta used his nail gun to kill as many as he could.

As Takashi and Rei stewed and considered their next move, they heard that distinctive sound. They knew their friends were nearby!

Delivery: Over the Top Anime Goodness

Keep in mind, please, that this is High School of the Dead. Takashi and Rei simply driving up an on-ramp and joining the fight would have been completely lacking in style. Besides, they’d heard Kouta’s gun above them, up on the main deck of the bridge. They couldn’t get to the on-ramps in time. So, Takashi did the only reasonable thing he could. He used an abandoned car-hauling trailer as a ramp and jumped the motorcycle onto the bridge.

Rei didn’t seem to enjoy that part of the ride.

High School of the Dead Episode 5: Rei vented her frustrations on the zombies

Rei wasted exactly zero time getting to work. Capture from the Hulu stream.

I’ve been going on about how realistic this show feels to me. Naturally, you’d take one look at this scene and think it’s so over the top that I’d hate it. Not so! Yes, Rei using the motorcycle’s impact to launch herself into a killing spree probably would have resulted in at least a sprained ankle if not shattered bones. Takashi hurling a loaded pistol to Kouta probably would have resulted in an accidental weapon’s discharge instead of Kouta activating Dread Otaku Mode(tm). And Takashi using the motorcycle’s momentum to grab Saeko and turn her loose on the zombies like some kind of Fujita/F-5 Twister of Zombie Destruction would have injured her more than Rei.

But screw all that. The scene was amazingly cool. Even better, it was perfectly in sync with one of the show’s main themes, which is that they guys work together instinctively. They didn’t have to spend an instant planning, because the goal was clear: Kill the zombies. The means was also clear: Get Rei, Saeko, Kouta, and Takashi into position to kill said zombies. That kind of spontaneous, intelligent self-organization is something that a demagogue cannot possibly match.

What did you think of the police response to the spoiled rich students trying to cross the bridge? What were your favorite moments in the episode? Please feel free to let me know in the comments!

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2 thoughts on “High School of the Dead Episode 5 Review – Best In Show

  1. I love that scene on the bridge where they all meet up and it’s one of the scenes where the anime did it better than the manga. In the manga, they just bumped into each other on the street…

    Obviously, going Grand Theat Auto on a motorcycle and then killing a bunch of zombies in an insanely over-the-top choreographed way is the preferred method, for sure.

    I’ve actually never watched it subbed before, other than a couple of half episodes on YouTube when I first discovered it back in 2012. I might have to correct that, although, I’m quite partial to Saeko’s dub voice.

    1. As I rewatched to review it, the differences in the dub versus sub really jumped out. Previously, I’d preferred the dub. This is one of two shows where I prefer the dub, with Infinite Stratos being the other.

      Yeah, the voice actor for Saeko’s voice in the dub nailed it!

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