Fire Force Creator Reveals How Zombies Inspired The Series

Fire Force has dropped during an appropriate time with the sweltering summer season in full swing. The anime franchise which follows a band of firefighters battling against "Infernals", aka regular citizens possessed by fire spirits, has created energetic, amazing fights using the fluidity of both the animation and the fiery creatures themselves. The creator of the franchise had some thoughts to share as to where his inspiration had come from with regards to the Infernals themselves.

We had the chance to speak with Fire Force creator, Atsushi Okubo, at the recent Anime Expo convention to discuss how the creation of the major antagonists of the franchise were inspired by the undead hordes made famous in movies such as Night of the Living Dead. What was your inspiration for the story behind Fire Force, the Infernals? It's such a unique story. I'm curious about your inspiration.

Fire Zombies
(Photo: David Production & Capcom)

Atsushi Okubo: When I was thinking about the concept for this manga, I wanted to reach wider audiences, from young to old. I thought about the occult phenomena that I've heard stories about people, human beings, combusting into flame. That was one of the concepts that I had. Then when I thought about the horror genre, the zombie came to my mind, what's scary about zombie. Then I go, like, "Burning zombie's scary." That's where the basic concept came from. When I had the idea of Infernals, it's because it's fire, flame, I could've thought of actually bringing into, just, military, to fight. Then because it's fire and flames, I thought it should be firefighters to extinguish burning zombies. Personally I like the horror genre, so I've watched a lot of zombie movies in the past, but I don't really have any particular one or two that I watched specifically for research purpose, or anything like that.


What do you think of the ties presented by the creator between Fire Force and the world of zombies? Which zombie franchise reminds you the most of the recent anime hit? Feel free to let us know in the comments or hit me up directly on Twitter @EVComedy to talk all things comics and anime!

Fire Force was first created by Atsushi Okubo for Kodansha's Weekly Shonen Magazine in 2015 and is officially described as such: "Terror has paralyzed the clockwork metropolis of Tokyo! Possessed by demons, people have begun to burst into flame, leading to the establishment of a special firefighting team: the Fire Force, ready to roll on a moment's notice to fight spontaneous combustion anywhere it might break out. The team is about to get a very unique addition: Shinra, a boy who possesses the unique power to run at the speed of a rocket, leaving behind the famous "devil's footprints" (and destroying his shoes in the process). Can the Fire Force discover the source of this strange phenomenon and put a stop to it? Or will the city burn to ashes first?"