Sankarea: Undying Love (Volume 5) – Boy, Medium Rare

Sankarea Volume 5 Cover

Trapped in a burning building, Chihiro has to find a way to help Rea regain her awareness before she eats him or they are consumed by the fire. Even if they survive, things will never be the same!

Sankarea: Undying Love (Volume 5) – Boy, Medium Rare

What happened?

Chihiro had found Rea hiding at the abandoned hotel where they first met. She was worried that she would hurt him, but Chihiro was confident that she wouldn’t. Then, a freak bolt of lightning hit the building and started a fire. Chihiro turned to Rea to tell her they needed to get out, but she only had eyes for him. She leapt on top of him and started to bite at his flesh.

The fire was interrupting Darin’s feed from 18. She couldn’t see what was going on and just as Ranko found the room where Darin and Grandpa were. Ranko made them tell her where Chihiro was and rushed to save him. Grandpa and Darin went with her. Amazingly, they found them all alive and well. Rea had even protected Chihiro’s body from the falling rubble, although she had done enough damage to his body already.

Sankarea Volume 5 Rea trying to eat Chihiro

It took several more days for Chihiro to recover and since he had experienced such a high dose of the poison it was impacting his vision, just as grandpa had experienced. In fact, that was why grandpa seemed the way he did. In an attempt to get back to normal, Chihiro and his family went to stay at a cabin beneath Mount Fuji. Rea and Darin went with them but Ranko refused, angry that Chihiro was continuing to put himself in danger.

During a late night walk of courage, Chihiro and Rea fell into an ice cavern where he tried to tell her that he would do whatever it took to help her. She wanted him to stop as her insatiable hungry grew whenever she felt anything towards him. He was sure that she was different to all of the cases that Darin and his grandpa had witnessed.

Sankarea Volume 5 Chihiro and Rea

Once home, Chihiro went to Ranko’s home in an attempt to make up with her, but she wasn’t happy to see him one bit. They watched several zombie movies back to back without saying so much as a word to one another. Finally, Chihiro tried to talk, trying to defend Rea. Ranko was sorry about what she said about Rea, but not that she was worried about him.

Finally, she kissed him and then took some zombie potion pills she had found in Darin’s room and quickly slipped out of consciousness. When she woke, she wasn’t a zombie and Chihiro was still there. He had spoken with Darin and discovered that they were just sleeping pills as Darin had reused the bottle and not changed the labels. Chihiro was embarrassed but asked that Chihiro stays safe for her, even if it is unrequited love.

Sankarea Volume 5 Chihiro visits Ranko awkward

What did you think?

I find myself getting angrier and angrier at Chihiro. He is so self-involved that he’s unwilling to listen to the advice from those around him that obviously know better and have had more experience. Sure, Rea did come back from the turbid phase which they have never seen before, but I can’t stand the confidence and lack of consideration he’s showing for anyone else. Rea has bitten him several times now. What if she had attacked Mero on the walk of courage? How would he live with himself knowing he was responsible for that?

Of course, it now looks like Bub might be killing and eating other animals in the night which is yet another sign that Chihiro is out of his depth. This was a fascinating volume, although I couldn’t stand seeing Ranko getting so upset that she was willing to become a zombie too. Seriously, Chihiro has got to man up and deal with the problems he’s created. He is completely hopeless and I was secretly hoping that Rea finished him off.

Sankarea Volume 5 Ranko kisses Chihiro

What have you learnt?

Well, the manga is already more bloody and interesting than the anime and I have another six volumes to get through. Of course, we’re well past anything that happened in the anime too so this is all new and unexplored. That gives me some hope that things will get interesting beyond the romance side of things. I can see how Chihiro’s actions might be construed as romantic, but to me, it is irresponsible, especially as someone who should know better.

Chihiro is some sort of great zombie fanatic but fails to see the trap he’s walking into. It’s not even something new either. There have been so many zombie stories where someone is infected or even a zombie and even then their family can’t accept that and everyone ends up getting eaten. He’s even ignoring the scientists that know better and are trying to warn him. But what do they know when compared to a reclused high school kid?

Sankarea Volume 5 Chihiro hugs Rea

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  1. There is something about protagonists who are in denial – or just stupid or self absorbed – that really drives me nuts. What usually happens is the suddenly they awaken and try to make things right.

    I generally prefer to see people evolve towards awareness than “stupid… stupid…stupid…stupid…stupid… AWARE!” because all the rectal-cranial inversion along the way is not entertaining.

    • Definitely. A more gradual approach is far more believable and it means you get to see growth throughout the story and not just one unbelievable revelation at the end.

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