I’m loathe to write this because Aldnoah.Zero is not without it’s problems and I hardily want it to look like I’m going to blindly stick up for this show; however, the fever-pitched frothing at Inaho’s return needs to be addressed.
Yes, it is possible to get shot in the head and live.
In much less time it would take to communicate one’s outrage over the sheer “impossibility” of Inaho’s return and how this is proof of the poor writing on the part of Aldnoah.Zero, it’s possible to use the internet to actually figure out the chances of Inaho’s survival.
In a matter of minutes I learned that 85% of people who are shot survive, which is a much larger percentage then I would have expected. Basically, if nothing vital is hit and the person doesn’t bleed out or suffer a massive infection there’s a very good chance for survival and that explains how the Count makes it. I also learned that only 5% of people shot in the brain survive and of those that survive 40% suffer some sort of permanent impairment. This does appear to put Inaho into a small statistical group, not impossible but very unlikely.
I also came across many examples of people living after getting shot in the head. One such example I’ll relate here because it makes Aldnoah.Zero look mundane in comparison. I’m sure some of those reading remember the Amish school shooting that happened in 2006. To those that don’t, a gunman attacked an Amish school and, before killing himself, he shot the 10 girls he held hostage in the back of the head at close range “execution-style”. Miraculously – if one believes in miracles – five of the girls survived and within a year four of the girls were back at school (one of these girls returned to pitch on her school’s softball team and another graduated and went back to working on her family’s farm).
Further reading on the subject said that the best chance for survival after getting shot in the brain is to be young, get shot in the front to back plane (as opposed to the right to left plane), have the bullet pass through the body completely, have only one hemisphere of the brain affected and even better only a single lobe, and for the victim to remain conscious.
I wanted to compare this best case scenario to the shot that hit Inaho and, if possible, to figure out what portion of the brain got hit and see what should be impaired; so, I reviewed the shooting and this is what I found.
This screenshot shows that to hit Inaho in the left eye without hitting either the gun or Inaho’s arm, Slaine would have needed to be above him and pointing downwards at a pretty steep angle which is what Slaine was doing.
Now with that angle in mind let’s see what might have been hit.
And it looks like Slaine might have completely missed the brain (which actually fits Slaine’s modus operandi by the way). So, if the shot missed the brain and Inaho didn’t bleed out and didn’t catch a nasty infection, then it seems entirely plausible, maybe even likely, for him to survive and make a good enough recovery to return to service. (That’s not to say I’d suggest getting shot like this is a walk in the park but there’s a big difference between sure fire death and the type of shot that Inaho took.)
I actually kind of expected this result because I asked my one sister, who is a registered nurse, to review the shower CPR scene from the first season and she told me that the animators actually got that part exactly right, and from past conversions I know this is a real rarity for TV/movies. This told me that the people behind Aldnoah.Zero purposely took the time to get it right, implying a higher level of competency on their part then most everyone seems to want to give them.
I suspect much of the hoopla around Inaho’s return is really a smokescreen to cover people’s personal subjective dislike of the series behind the cover of a objective “impartial” reason. To those, I’d like to say ‘Stop being disingenuous, grow a backbone and say exactly and really why you dislike Aldnoah.Zero.’ It’s not hard. For example, outside of the last 5-6 episodes of the second part of the second season, I found Mushishi to be really dull and repetitive and Ginko was one of the most boring characters I’ve come across in anime. If it wasn’t for the great atmospheric animation style I’d rate most of the series as only slightly above.