The Zombie Apocalypse Anime Taking Over The World
Zom 100: Bucket List of the Dead is a Japanese manga series that has recently been adapted into an anime series. Centered around a zombie apocalypse in Tokyo, the show follows protagonist Akira Tendo as he attempts to complete a bucket list of 100 tasks before he becomes zombified. With its unique premise, witty comedy, and colorful visual style, Zom 100 is attracting more and more passionate fans eager for additional seasons.
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Overview and Background
Zom 100 first began as a manga series written by Haro Aso in 2016. Published in Weekly Shonen Jump magazine, the manga was an unexpected hit in Japan thanks to its tongue-in-cheek humor and exploration of working culture. When Studio MAPPA (Attack on Titan, Jujutsu Kaisen) announced they would be creating an anime adaptation in 2023, fans were overjoyed.
The 12-episode first season of the anime premiered in July 2023. Staying faithful to the manga, the show introduces viewers to Akira, a disenchanted office worker who feels unmotivated and stuck in a rut. But when an experimental bioweapon transforms most of Tokyo’s residents into zombies overnight, Akira discovers an internal bucket list of 100 tasks he must complete before becoming undead himself. Using this list as a guide, he embarks on a journey of self-discovery all while navigating the dangers of a zombie apocalypse.
What Critics And Fans Are Saying
The anime adaptation of Zom 100 has received mixed reviews thus far. On the review aggregate site Rotten Tomatoes, the Audience Score is currently 67%. On IMDb, the show has earned a respectable 7.8/10 rating from over 5,000 users.
Positive reviews praise Zom 100’s offbeat premise, vibrant animation style, and ability to blend side-splitting comedy with deeper themes. Many find Akira to be a likeable everyman protagonist who shows admirable character growth across the 12 episodes. Even critics admit the anime perfectly encapsulates the manga’s anarchic spirit.
However, other reviewers feel the show falters in its plotting and character development. Some say the series fails to fully capitalize on its zombie apocalypse setting. Others note an over-reliance on slapstick humor and cliched anime tropes.
Overall though, fans seem enthusiastic about the show. Many are actively campaigning for a second season on social media. Viewers can’t get enough of Akira’s meta adventures through a collapsing Tokyo.
The anime’s protagonist, Akira begins the story as a bored, unfulfilled 24-year old salaryman. He feels trapped in the rat race of Japanese work culture and struggles to find meaning or joy. When Tokyo descends into chaos, Akira discovers a mysterious bucket list on his phone titled “100 Things to Do Before Becoming a Zombie”. Using the list as motivation, Akira evolves from a stagnant office worker into a courageous hero willing to fight for his life. Viewers enjoy watching his emotional growth. His resilience in the face of armageddon makes him a compelling everyman character.
As Akira’s best friend and co-worker, Reiichi adds humor to the story through his cowardly persona. Whereas Akira charges headfirst into danger, Reiichi actively avoids perilous situations. His primary goal is to survive the zombie outbreak by any means necessary. Though mostly driven by self-interest, Reiichi does occasionally put his friends first. Fans find his frantic energy and rapid mood swings hysterical. Reiichi is the comic relief character of Zom 100.
A popular live streamer, Shizuka gets caught up in madness with Akira and Reiichi while visiting Tokyo. Originally portrayed as an airhead, Shizuka turns out to have impressive survival instincts and athletic prowess. Despite hailing from the country’s suburbs, her ability to adapt to the zombie-ridden metropolis may exceed that of lifelong Tokyo residents. Shizuka adds femininity and heart to the main trio. Viewers also enjoy her flirtatious relationship with Akira.
|Bravery, resilience, character growth
|Reckless, disenchanted at outset
|Cowardly comic relief
|Driven by self-interest
|Survival skills, strength, adaptability
|Overly trusting initially
Setting The Scene
Zom 100 takes place in the sprawling metropolis of Tokyo, Japan. When the series begins, the city is instantly recognizable with its towering skyscrapers, crowded intersections, packed trains, and neon signs. But the atmosphere grows more ominous by the episode as zombies overrun familiar urban landmarks like Shibuya Crossing. Watching the vibrant, pulsing city devolve into chaos provides an impactful backdrop for Akira’s coming-of-age.
The anime’s visuals expertly convey the spreading zombie plague. Witnessing bloody zombies limp through locations modeled on real Tokyo districts makes their takeover seem plausible. MAPPA uses color, shadow, and movement to transform Tokyo from a bustling hub into a barren wasteland. Their exceptional animation builds tension while retaining the manga’s signature art style.
Story And Tone
Centered around Akira completing tongue-in-cheek bucket list tasks like “Ride a motorcycle” and “Go to a mixer”, Zom 100 seamlessly blends comedy with moving drama. Though Apocalypse Now this show is not, darker moments do emerge like when Akira mercy kills his zombified manager. Viewers never know whether they’ll be laughing or crying from one scene to the next.
This tonal complexity partially explains the anime’s crossover appeal. The series contains elements of sitcom, survival thriller, coming-of-age tale, and even romance. Fans of shows like The Walking Dead, The Office, and Scott Pilgrim vs. the World can all find something to enjoy in Zom 100’s genre fusion.
The anime also offers deeper commentary on Japanese work culture. Through flashbacks, viewers witness how Akira’s soul-crushing job drained him of purpose over time. But only after civilization collapses does our protagonist regain his motivation and zest for life. This ironic narrative arc provides additional emotional impact.
Could A Second Season Happen?
Thus far, anime studio MAPPA has yet to confirm plans for a second season. However, given Zom 100’s popularity and the wealth of manga source material left to adapt, the odds seem reasonably strong more episodes could get greenlit.
The first 12-episode season only covers roughly the first 6 volumes of Haro Aso’s manga which currently spans 15 volumes as of late 2023. So plenty of zombie escapades centering around Akira and his pals remain. As long as DVD sales and streaming numbers impress, Zom 100 Season 2 stands a fighting chance!
If approved, a second season would likely premiere in late 2024 or early 2025 based on typical anime production schedules. Fans may have to wait awhile but the payoff could be worth it. More hilarious zombie warfare and tearing up at Akira’s inspiring metamorphosis sounds like an excellent way to spend 13 more episodes!
From its quirky premise to compelling characters to thematic richness, Zom 100: Bucket List of the Dead has won over legions of passionate fans with its first season. Despite some flaws, viewers seem eager for the anime’s unique blend of laughs and feels to continue. Let’s hope studio MAPPA listens by greenlighting a second serving of Akira’s unbelievable adventures!