Part 1: Zetsubou~, Zetsubou~, Zetsubou~
…So there was no hope after all. All those years, toiling away alone…. But well, now that I’ve failed…I feel so relaxed.
~Ishii, Chapter 16
Shoujo Shuumatsu Ryouko, localized as Girls’ Last Tour, is a series by Tsukumizu that focuses on Chito and Yuuri, two girls driving around a post-apocalyptic world in a Kettenkrad, continuously moving, scavenging for food, shelter, and fuel wherever they can find it. It’s a Sisyphean existence where nothing is gained or accomplished past being replenishing their reserves to keep moving. They have no purpose beyond continuing their own existence.
Most stories set in a post-apocalyptic, posthuman world would focus on the existential despair and dread of being alone in the world, without purpose, and constantly confronted with mortality. However, when Girls’ Last Tour delves into these ideas, it does so in a way that I can only describe as “existential joy.” Continue reading “Getting Along with Hopelessness: The Existential Joy of Girls’ Last Tour”