「 ゾンビたちはどう復讐するのか SAGA」 (Zonbi-tachi wa Dou Fukushuu Suru no ka SAGA)
“The SAGA of How These Zombies Will Get Their Revenge”
Now that we’re back in the present day, Zombie Land Saga Revenge shifts its focus towards Kotaro’s impulsive decision to make the same mistake he did by booking a massive stadium for Franchouchou’s next concert. But because he wants to shift his attention towards promoting the concert, he’s hoping to strike lightning twice in the same place that just so happened to be where Ai was struck by lightning.
This season has been obsessed with the idea of getting “revenge” for their bad concert, but from the looks of it, Kotaro is who they need to get their revenge on. His mouth’s habit of writing checks he can’t cash in ends up being the reason why they booked a venue that’s too large for their following to begin with.
On top of this, when the concert goes belly-up, he completely withdraws from the band as they fight amongst themselves about why everything went under. He forces the girls to rely on him for leadership, but because the failed concert caused him to check out entirely, it immobilized Franchouchou and forced them to have to rely on the resources they had to get normal jobs until they beat Kotaro into managing the band again.
It also doesn’t help that Okoba is onto Kotaro and, as he decides to scout out EFS as the band’s next destination, he corners him about his band of deceased musicians he’s parading around the stage. We’ve been following Franchouchou since the beginning and have the general impression that they love performing as a band. But, for an outsider just learning about the identities of the girls, Okoba makes for a solid argument for Kotaro resurrecting these girls to profit off of the likenesses of deceased celebrities.
Without knowing anything about the girls, it’d be easy to see that managing Franchouchou paints Kotaro as someone who made a career disrespecting the dead. At best, he’s mocking the memories of the dead by dressing girls up to look like dead celebrities. At worst, he robbed graves to slap some make-up on dead girls and made a side-show where he’s making the corpses of famous girls dance around like puppets to line his pockets.
I find Okoba’s point-of-view to be fascinating because, as the only regular human who found out that Franchouchou is comprised of deceased girls, his outrage hones in on the horror that comes from trotting out the voices and likenesses of deceased celebrities for profit and entertainment.
His outrage about Kotaro disrespecting the girls’ memories was reminiscent of the responses from the posthumous releases that musicians today have had success from. From that perspective, it would look something like the situation with XXXTentacion, Pop Smoke, Juice WRLD, and Lil Peep where producers and other musicians have been inclined to reappropriate any of the unreleased material they come across for new music.
Posthumous releases only get sketchy when the intention is made all the more apparent, but imagine how much worse it would be if any of these artists were reanimated 20 years later to form a dream team of deceased musicians. The reaction was already volatile enough with the Tupac Shakur hologram that was created to entertain the privileged audiences at Coachella, but using necromancy instead of a hologram would be disrespectful to life itself.
So it’s interesting to see that an idea like that would be the first main consequence of Kotaro reanimating the dead. Instead of the horror being in the existence of cannibalistic zombies, it’s the horror that somebody’s life could potentially become a toy or a puppet that somebody could manipulate for their own purposes. If the series didn’t lean on giving the girls happiness after their lives had ended, the series could be interpreted as a version of Herbert West–Reanimator that revolved around the music industry.
I did get a little overindulgent analyzing a theme that was barely there, but I had a good time with this episode given that it allowed me to humor why Okoba was more than determined to expose Kotaro. There is an added twist near the end with the power outage taking out Okoba’s article and placing the bartender in a compromised position, so it should be exciting to see what comes of this with the next episode.