Kore Wa Zombie Desu Ka – 09: Be GAR like Ayumu
Where do I start? The speed at which the plot sped through the episode was like a student cramming at the last minute for his final examinations. The result? You get a bit of everything, but you end up not knowing anything. I’m quite sure many of us were anticipating an episode where Eu faces off with the shopkeeper a la Eu vs. Kyoko style back in episode 6. But all the shopkeeper did was to look evil, and sputter some not-exactly-very-threatening words, claiming that Eu still has to grant a wish for him.
It can be hypothesized that the shopkeeper is actually a former zombie companion of Eu. Back in episode 7, Ayumu enquired as to whether there were any other zombies around, to which Eu affirmed, but she did mention that she had ‘done away’ with that companion. With his reappearance in this episode, we can see that Eu is visibly agitated, her breathy gasps increasing as she panics. I chuckled a bit when her pen and notepad transformed into a reaper’s scythe. When not hacking and slashing with the scythe, it can be conveniently stowed away as a handy-dandy notebook and pen. Takes personal relations management and administration to new levels.
Well, the shopkeeper apparently killed a Seventh Abyss (I’m guessing we’ll never know what that means), and because of that, Eu spoke and asked him to disappear. To which he did, but he did not completely vanish from the face of the earth. He reappeared, and seeing Eu enjoying herself in the companionship of Ayumu, Haruna, Seraphim and Yuki should have made him jealous that he didn’t enjoy the same luxury. It is not explained why he came back, nor was it revealed what was his wish. That makes this particular character extremely one-dimensional, conveniently inserted into the plot for the sake of creating a bit of forced drama to make the story move forward. Apart from that, there is really little point to having this character. It serves as a detriment to the series when characters are introduced without much substantiation. It’s little wonder why this series is so much better as a slapstick comedy with a bit of action here and there, rather than creating a depressing setting that does not serve to advance the plot nor try to flesh out the characters.
This series isn’t banished to eternal damnation though, as there are still random bits of slapstick comedy interspersed throughout the episode. Seraphim is still staunch in her refusal to recognize Ayumu as a sentient life form. She is, however, willing to disregard the Vampire Ninja code when Ayumu pleads her to. It is revealed in the episode that Seraphim had received orders to exterminate Eu, hypothesizing that Eu’s latent magical power is the cause for escalating Megalo attacks. Naturally, she is at odds with the order, as they have been living together as a harmonious group for quite some time. However, she continually stresses the importance of sticking to the code. Ayumu appeals to Seraphim, not as a Vampire Ninja, but as an individual, to which Seraphim was finally induced to make a stand, and abandon the mission. That being said, despite her insulting of Ayumu, she’s actually appreciative of the friendship between the two of them, which is quite heartening.
And we get this giant flubber bird that looks not unlike the alarm clock a few episodes back. It lands on Haruna, and begins petting her head! I’m like, wtf. The shopkeeper could’ve summoned a more menacing looking abomination. But this is Kore Zombie, I’m not going to look for explanations for this. Dai-sensei appeared halfway into the episode, and made light work of the flubber bird with little more than lifting a finger against it. Why is it that Dai-sensei is so overpowered? Shouldn’t she be the one that should be targeted instead of Eu? Eu barely made a scratch on the shopkeeper; surely Dai-sensei could eradicate him with the blink of an eye? And because of the blast from Dai-sensei, the bird fell on Yuki instead. Now, Haruna is nearly unscathed from the flubber bird landing on her, but Yuki goes berserk and involuntarily summons a manticore from within herself. Wtf? And it is said to be the ultimate Magiclad weapon. Why does a Vampire Ninja have a Magiclad weapon? Does that make her a Magiclad Girl as well? Questions, questions, questions. And none of them really get answered.
The manticore sets itself to self-destruct after 30 seconds, but Ayumu goes into GAR mode in an attempt to save Yuki. He willingly risks his life to approach Yuki and hugs her to neutralize the self-destruct sequence, and in the process shouting manly words of manliness. That should set off multiple flags for Yuki, but does he really like her? Or does he like Seraphim? Or he secretly has the hots for Haruna? Or, despite advances from other parties, he’s solely dedicated to Eu? The many decisions the owner of a harem must make.
Towards the end of the episode, Eu feels that she has caused too many problems for Ayumu and co., and that her latent powers are attracting all kinds of unwanted attention, thus she finds a chance to run away. Ayumu is the stricken the hardest by this revelation, as while the other girls wrote wishes about being together, he wished that none of those would come true. This is the second time in two episodes that she has disappeared, but you know that she’ll be back. And I hope she comes back along with the slapstick comedy, as this episode had too many ‘wtf was that’ moments rather than hilarious ones.
And still, nobody cares what happens to the shopkeeper.