If you haven’t heard of the surprise hit idol-girl show, ZOMBIE LAND SAGA, it’s about dang time. It’s funny, it’s cute, it’s got great tunes, and it’s REAL! Ok, we’re being a little clickbaity with that statement. But people are in love with the show, because along with all that great stuff, is endless references to things in real life and pop culture. Check it out:
✨1. The Our seven zombies-turned-idols (or idols-turned-zombies?) live in a building that’s based off a real-life place, which is now open to tours!
That’s right, you and all your zombie friends can walk right through the Karatsu City Museum of History & Folklore in Japan. Thanks to the show, the building is now getting unprecedented amounts of tourism. Neat!
✨2. Everyone’s favorite zombie doggo, Romero, is named after the renowned horror film director, George Romero.
You can thank him for Night of the Living Dead and his influence in the horror genre.
✨3. “Franchouchou” has an unexpected meaning.
While the “chouchou” in Franchouchou is like the French word for “pet”, the whole name itself sounds way less adorable in Japanese. It’s pronounced like “furanshuu”, a term which means “rotten egg smell.” Yum.
✨4. The show’s opening and ending songs are sung by the Japanese voice actors themselves.
Hey, they didn’t get cast as idol characters for nothing!
✨5. For number five, we’re zeroing in on Episode Five! Remember the fried chicken restaurant called “Drive-In Tori”? Well, it’s a real restaurant in Japan!
Not only that, but it’s another heartwarming example of how this show about Saga, Japan, is actually bringing tourism to Saga in real life. The name-drop drew a fair amount of business to the real restaurant.
✨6. Kotaro tries to attract sponsors to fund Franchouchou, and one of those sponsors is Hisanaka Pharmaceutical. In reality, there’s Hisamitsu—a pharmaceutical company based in Saga.
One of their most popular brands is a product called Salonpas, which is similar to what the idols promote in the show.
✨7. Cygames Inc., is a game developing company, which recently opened a new corporate building in Japan. Sound familiar? The idols promoted it in Episode Seven — it’s also the company that produced the show!
✨8. Maizuru Shopping Plaza promoted in Episode Nine is also definitely real, and definitely a great place to stop for a bite to eat while touring through Karatsu city.
✨9. Episode Three is called “Dead or Live SAGA”, which is an homage to the video game Dead or Alive.
Episode Four is called “Warming Dead SAGA”, and if you didn’t catch that obvious nod to Walking Dead, congratulations, you might be a zombie. Welcome, friend.
✨10. Last but not least, let’s get real on a whole ‘nother level! The show depicts a transgender character, and what caught our attention is the mention of deadnames. Before Lily died, she was called Masao.
Now that she’s a zombie, her deadname literally refers to a dead person. It’s a unique way to shed light on a very real challenge for many people who transition. And, yeah, that’s a kind of real-life representation we don’t get to see much in anime.
How’s that for anime irl? Pretty interesting, right? The series just concluded, so now is your chance to see how many more Easter eggs and references you can find! Binge ZOMBIE LAND SAGA on FunimationNow and let us know if you discover any other neat ties to the real world.