Wednesday, November 23, 2011

When Fan Service goes too far

Fan Service: As the name implies fan service is the servicing of fans. In the context of anime and manga fan service is putting something into an anime and/or manga just for the sake of servicing fans.

Now that that is out of the way let me tell you about High School of the Dead.

In what could be present day Japan out of nowhere zombies appear and start to attack innocent civilians. The events of High School of the Dead center around Takashi, Rei, and their five companions as they cut, bash, drive, shoot, and run their way to safety.

Its a simple sounding story that you would think was just thrown together to score on the recent interest in zombie fiction. But truthfully its a pretty good work. In addition to the hordes of undead that make the back drop we also have the personal issues of the characters trying to fight their way to freedom. All in all it works really well (except for Takagi, with the way she treats everyone especially Hirano, I truly wish that pink haired know it all would die, violent preferably). But there's one small problem.

Well actually several problems.

Truthfully they aren't that small (but that's not the issue in and of itself) and the way they come up isn't that small either.

Remember what I said about fan service? High School of the Dead is plagued by it.

Here is a link to the first half of the first episode. Go check it out and come back. Don't worry I'll still be here.

Oh you're back already? That was fast.

Did you see what I was talking about? If you didn't (and honestly the only valid reason you didn't see is because you either could not or did not watch it) then I'll inform you. That show is riddled with tit and panty shots.

I mean damn I can get with some fan servicing because ultimately shows are made for fans and a show with no fans will fail. But goodness there are parts in this series where the shots are gratuitous well past the point of making sense.

Now don't get me wrong I'm not trying to say that any show that has any such shots is bad. Physics accounts for some of that stuff because truthfully tits do jiggle sometimes and if a girl in a skirt moves a lot (especially with all the running and fighting these girls do) yes they will fly up. On the other hand its pretty obvious a lot of those shots are there for the sake of being there, not because they would happen naturally or just throwing in a little extra for the fans.

I'm not trying to argue against sexually explicit material or anything. Its just that the way this was done I think its a pretty strong display of thinking that boys (the target audience of this and a lot of anime) are so low brow that we can't get into something without sexualizing girls.

Damn shame that is.


James said...

I knew what this was going to be when she fail-stabbed that zombie. This stuff really ruins an anime.

Danny said...

I expected the same at around that point James (I expected it but denied it until the first appearance of the school nurse).

And its a damn shame because its a really good story especially with "coming to terms" moments that the kids go through.