Feb 15, 2009
kevo (All reviews)
Apocalypse Zero is an anime that lives up to its name. Zero merits, zero reasons to watch it, zero out of ten.

The rating system thing doesn't allow me to assign zeroes and I don't like numerical rating in general because I don't believe that a complex opinion such as a review can be properly simplified with math. However, I will talk about numbers and reviews here. Numerical ratings of anime are approximately earned with merits. Everything the show does to advance its entertainment purpose raises its number. That is why my real overall rating for Apocalypse Zero is zero. This show literally goes nowhere. I gained nothing but despair in watching this, and I would have better spent my time looking at a blank monitor, which would have earned the same score (so shouldn't the rating really be -1/10?)

Apocalypse Zero is an anime without a purpose. Every show ever made, no matter how poorly, should at least have a purpose, a direction that the show explores into. Some way of entertaining its viewers. Make them laugh, cry, scare them, tell a story, give them suspense, have them relax, something cathartic so that people want to watch. The only purpose that I can even guess at for Apocalypse Zero is to make the viewer close his or her media player.

I will be able to give more insight into the show if I cover everything that the show is deficient in. First, Apocalypse Zero is without reason. There is some kind of plot, involving two siblings and the premise that the world has ended and people have to survive. The lack of elaboration about why or how the world has ended intends to add some mystery into the show. The biggest mystery, however, is how they managed to get the likes of Yamadera Kouichi (Spike Spiegel) and Ogata Megumi (Shinji from Neon Genesis Evangelion) to star in this show. This already shallow plot is poorly developed because of paper-thin characters that do not possess a shred of believability. It's hard to care about plot or themes or things dying when you literally do not give a scrap about anybody that appears in the show. Apocalypse Zero is also without mercy. Have you noticed that when you watch really good anime, the episodes feel like they are 5 minutes long? Apocalypse Zero is the longest hour of my life. I swear, dentist appointments just breeze right by compared to watching this anime, which manages to start absolutely putrid and somehow become astronomically worse. Why? Because most importantly, Apocalypse Zero is an anime without shame. Pointless gore for the sake or pointless gore. Ugly, eye-killing vulgar nudity for the sake of, what I suspect, making the viewer suicidal. It becomes quite evident after the first episode, and mindblowingly obvious by the end, that Apocalypse Zero's directing lacks discipline in any form. Elfen Lied was gory but it contributes to the anime. You can even say the same for things like Dokuro-chan (it adds to the silliness and humor, I guess). Apocalypse Zero screams terrible choices when it comes to design, directing, storyboards, plot, pacing, and art. This anime is far beyond terrible. This anime is insulting.

Let me take a brief tangent and talk about an anime called Mars of Destruction, the lowest ranked anime on MAL. I appreciate it much more now. It's fun to watch. It's fun to point out the cliches and mediocrity. It's funny to laugh at the near comical miscues in directing. Clowns are funny because they act silly. They splash pies on themselves and fall off unicycles, a la Mars of Destruction. Clowns are not fun when they attack you with a sledge hammer and try to rape you, a la Apocalypse Zero. Mars of Destruction is the lowest ranked anime on MAL because it doesn't do anything right. In comparison, Apocalypse Zero not only doesn't do anything right, it seems to go out of its way to make sure everything it does has to be so overboard, so nonsensically inane, that one would suspect making terrible anime is a competitive art. You know what? Apocalypse Zero wins.