When Kanro, one of the Seven Member Committee seeking to eradicate all contradictions, sniffs out the stragglers from Z-Loan at a rundown motel and attempts to flush them down the data drain like their “deleted” comrades, Chika and Shito end up not in the ether–but as characters in a video game! With the help of an old enemy they escape, but then must face the truth about Michiru as her true nature is revealed. Michiru must come to grips with it as well, and what she decides will affect not just those of Z-Loan, but of both the mortal world and the afterlife!
I was surprised to hear that volume 13 was the final volume of the series, when the end of volume 11 started a new arc. Apparently it wasn’t a just new arc but the beginning of the end. But its an arc that feels rushed and slapped together rather than thoughtfully planned out.
I’m sure Peach-Pit had the ending to this series all planned out. Some groundwork was laid as scenes from previous volumes that are referenced, such as Hakka telling Michiru about her true nature. But the overall feeling going into these volumes is one of rushing. After Kanro’s attack, it’s just one mad dash after another to try to find and save the other members of Z-Loan; to find Michiru; to save the world. It’s just one thing after another thrown out at the reader who barely has time to process what’s happening before the next problem is thrown at them. The information overload is made worse by the sudden references to “Elizabeth’s Children” and Christian mythology that is thrown in. These references seem to come out of nowhere and go in the same direction.
The whole “turning everything into data” and Chika and Shito becoming stuck in a video game comes off really gimmicky. The streams of characters that float around after “deletion” calls up images of The Matrix, a movie that was more gimmick than story in the first place. The video game bit was more interesting in general. It was at least handled humorously, with Chika and Shito starting out as 8-bit characters, and have to play in a video game called “Zombie Paradise” to rise up to 16, then 32, before regaining their proper appearance.
The ending was a little too pat for my liking. There really wasn’t any tension about what would happen. Michiru’s actions were obvious. And while the ending wrapped up most of the loose ends, it just restarted. I know this was probably supposed to give the feeling of a happy ending, but to me it just came off as cliché. It just didn’t do anything for me.
Zombie Loan was a series that never really impressed me. It started out slow, with characters that didn’t impress, and while it had some interesting moments in the middle, they weren’t enough to overcome the problems. The ending was sadly much like the beginning; unimpressive. While I’m sure Zombie Loan has its fans, I’m not one of them.