In Terra Formars Revenge, the crew members of the Annex I continue to fight against Terraformars—the large humanoid cockroaches that evolved from the ones sent to Mars centuries ago. However, far from discovering the cure for the lethal Alien Engine Virus that has been plaguing Earth, the Annex I team have learned that some squadrons have agendas from their own countries. Now, the squadrons must not only fight against the Terraformars for their survival, but also each other in the never-ending battle for international dominance.
I honestly don't know where the low ratings for this show are coming from. It's like a bandwagon effect every other user wants to dislike the show because they heard from him, her, or the other that the first season sucked... which it didn't. It had a rough start but does turn itself around. All that aside, I believe that Terra Formars revenge does a pretty good job redeeming itself through its intense dramatic scenes along with a reasonable amount of unforgettable action and mayhem.
Season 2 's plot is straight-forward, right to the point, and focuses more on drama and having "goals" rather
than having the main & supporting characters get involved in random, unexciting, and dull circumstances. This worked out well in season 2's favor because during season 1 it felt like things like the pacing was slow, and the new plot developments felt lackluster at best. The new director and team of producers working on this must have payed close attention to what was wrong with the season 1 to improve what they thought was best! Lastly, the improvements of the plot for each episode was well executed. From the story-telling narrative I was impressed with how well new developments in the story-line were made. My initial concerns during the beginning of season 2 (which were bad story-telling, lack of interesting new developments, gore for the sake of being edgy) were thrown out the window like a cold lifeless corpse as soon as I started watching. I began thinking to myself "Hmm, you know, this new team is doing a lot better than whoever worked on season 1." I enjoyed knowing that I could be fully engaged in the story & plot for each episode, and not complain the entire time about the directions of certain events were going. Now one thing I didn't like was that the story, at times, felt like both backstories, flashbacks, and often times new developments would drag on too long. Too much dialogue between characters was another re-occurring issue I had a hard time dealing with because I felt like the characters would converse so much that it would take away my enjoyment for the story. Lastly I would have also liked to see more detailed backstories on the Terra Formers because I felt like the additional information explained by Boa wasn't the least bit useful. Overall I was very impressed with the direction that the new team went with in the story of Terra formars revenge.
Animation quality looked pretty damn good. There are lots of obvious moments where I saw that CGI was used to improve the appearance of the Terra Formars in groups, often times ready to attack or die. CGI was used a lot last season so I cannot really add too much about the subject. Character designs and the appearances of both humans and roaches look a lot moderately better. I mean when you compare the anime character designs to the original manga, the anime versions look 1000% better. The quality of the special effects are also pretty good, again not too much I can add. I'm going to assume that the quality of animation was a bit better due to TYO Animations & LIDENFILMS working on it. Lastly, the background settings are very detailed. The work the animators did on objects like computer monitors and electronic devices was pretty amazing.
I have never been impressed with the soundtrack to the Terra Formar series. None of the opening & ending songs get me excited enough to watch the show. The background music sounds bland and boring, it sort of sounds like stock music. I don't think the composer put much effort into enhancing the shows dramatic moments and action scenes. The voice actors were pretty good. I actually don't have too much to add on the actors performances. Sound effects were alright, still sounds like the same effects used in season 1, JOHJ JOHJ. Overall I think the sound, voice actors special effects for vehicles, weapons, need to sound just a bit more realistic to enhance the quality of the show.
The old and new characters were alright. Like other viewers, I did notice that most main characters do seem to be "softer" and maybe just a little sillier in the personality department however, it that really doesn't have a big impact on how I enjoyed viewed the characters.. Personally I don't think that the comedy works with characters like Michelle because she's always been strong-minded along with having a serious personality. Having her be a "straight-man" to Joe's naturally hilarious & every-man personality felt kind of awkward at times. When characters do need to be strong and take action, for example Michelle, then she'll be strong. As shown in I believe episode 5 or 6. She's still the same bad-ass we loved regardless of how "toned down" her personality seems, same goes for the others too. Character growth and development is still relied upon in season 2. In a weird way, everybody learns something or the other to help them harness their strength and knowledge.
Enjoyment for this series would honestly be about a 7 and a half. While I did feel like this was much, much, better than what season 1 had to offer, the series wasn't exactly too exciting at times and had few to many moments of boredom.. I mean, episodes do feature moments where tension begins to rise and dramatic scenes are almost incredible unfortunately though, what damages the series enjoyment factor is that those moments aren't really consistent. Improvement that I think would work best is to tone down the overly dramatic scenes or make them less lengthy because as I mentioned early, certain episodes do tend to drag on with the "Oh my God we are going to die" and "Oh no, what are we going to do?" moments.
Overall I can say that season 2 was a major improvement to all categories listed above, and leaves a better impression of what the show is really about. What that thing is varies from person to person however, I'd have to say that it's determination and the will & strength to never give up. The final product was indeed "very good" and I had a lot of fun watching it. 8/10 from me mates.
Let me start this off by saying that I really enjoyed the first season of Terra Formars, even with its somewhat lackluster story and mediocre character design. But I'll leave it at that because those weren't the reasons why most people enjoyed Terra Formars. I was also really hyped for the second season, as I expected the same viewing experience that I had with the first.
Moving on to this so called second season : "Terra Formars Revenge" ( although "revenge" is probably what most of the Terra Formars fans want against the producers ).
-First off let's talk about animation... One of the main
reasons why this season falls short of our expectations :
The animation has changed for the worse. In the first season we had well executed and fluid animation which made the fighting scenes exciting and appealing, without getting boring and repetitive.
In the second season they give us a lackluster, seemingly "lower budget" animation which makes the fighting look unimpressive as it loses the "punch" that it once had in the prequel. This makes the action as boring as it gets. It makes you feel like this might be some kind of bad joke.
-Moving on to the art :
The art style has shifted from a very realistic and dark representation of scenery and characters, to a very bright and colorful art style. This is what takes away most of what the anime was about... The cruel environment and situation have now become more lighthearted as they take a different direction from the foundation that was built in the first season.
-Speaking of lighthearted, let's head to the story/characters :
Probably the only positive thing is that the plot does continue in this second season.
And now back to the negatives : now here is where it starts to get uglier, although the plot remains, the representation of the characters and situations is a disgrace. Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you : fan service !!!! You can start guessing how glad I was to see that in a supposedly dark and gory survival anime. Fan service is probably what you'd least expected to find in Terra Formars, even though it only occurs in the first episode it is still disgraceful.
Complementing the lightheartedness, the characters seem to take the situation they are in less seriously as we also have the addition of "comedy bubbles" ( don't really know how to call them ).
To wrap this up, Terra Formars Revenge is an excuse of a second season as it does not in any way bring justice upon the first season or the manga...
Hopefully this will be enough for people to understand how disappointing this sequel is...
Even though it is not unwatchable, I wouldn't recommend "Terra Formars Revenge" to anyone who loved the first season or the manga.
In the first season they showed you how vulnerable the characters could be despite having immense power. Many of them died whilst being overpowered. This creates that "cling to reality experience" that makes a good plot like AoT. I felt as though they disregarded that and went full dragon ball z which is a strict fantasy power up plot like tengen toppa. Im not saying dbz or tengen is a bad anime but what made the first season good was that slice of reality that they could at anytime die. The drawback mechanics of the source of their power up , which is the medicine,
was disregarded I felt like. They were popping the medicine like crack whore addicts when taking 2 or 3 of those were fatal if I remember correctly from the first season. In summary, they didnt stick with their guns and just went for "convinient for the plot" route. This really a mediocere season at best.
Terra Formars was a weak action series with shallow characters and many failed attempts at adding depth. But hey, at least it was grim and gritty and we don't get nearly enough grim and gritty works of media, if you ignore the tens of thousands too many that we get. Okay, so the last series ended with our heroes stranded on Mars. One full squadron has been killed, one is made up of traitors, and I'm sure it's not the one that was reported dead but we saw alive and well, and our heroes have to find their way back to Earth with some living
derp roaches in order to stop a disease. Let's look at where things go in Terra Formars: Revenge, and see if we can find any reason to care.
We pick up where the last series left off. In this one the focus shifts to the struggle of the traitorous fourth squadron against the other squadrons, primarily the first and second since the fourth wants to capture what's her name and that one guy. So, the 4th squadron takes control of the fallen ship, making it their base and goes all out, doing whatever it takes, to capture that one guy and whatever her name was. Meanwhile, the first and second squadron have to evade the derp roaches and find a way to strike back at the 4th squadron.
I will give this series some credit over the first. There's a lot less of an issue with both exposition, since those scenes are shortened quite a bit for this one. There's also less of a problem with solutions for various problems being completely pulled out of the writer's posterior. This series focuses much more on largely mindless action sequences coming one after the other with the series' attempt to add some depth betwixt them. That being said, flashbacks are a massive pain in this one. The first series used them quite a bit, mainly in attempts to make us care about the characters, but this one takes it to the next level. A lot of the big climactic stuff at the end gets interrupted by long, drawn out flashbacks. Plus, we get the same flashback of the protagonist boy talking to a sick child from the first series so many times you'd think it would be showing us how he learned that “with great power there must come great responsibility.” Granted, I wouldn't have remembered such a dull scene without them doing a flashback but I didn't need them to keep bringing it up. This series is also overly fond of fake-outs. The series loves to move things to a bleak note only to reveal that there's still a glimmer of hope or that things went okay after all and we just didn't see it. Here's the thing with both flashbacks and fake-outs. They're both useful tools when used in moderation but when they're overdone, like they are here, they quickly become tired. Fake-outs in particular since they don't work when you expect them. This series also has some tonal issues. There are scenes that attempt to add some levity which is a good idea, in concept. The problem here is that they'll stick the scenes in randomly during moments that are supposed to be tense. For example, they have two characters who are surrounded by derp roaches and they insert a comedic bit about skunks, which just undermines the tension completely.
Again, the concept has potential and I do still give them credit for trying to be more than just mindless action, but the execution is just poor and the effort doesn't ultimately mean much.
I feel like I could basically copy and paste my whole rant about the characters from the first series with some minor tweaks. I won't, but I could. The big problem with the characters in this is just that they're boring. There's nothing to them beyond the same trite action archetypes that we've seen time after time. The most attempts we get at developing them are in flashbacks that serve to show us that they had equally bland families who they're fighting for or some generically tragic back stories. But there's nothing in there that really adds depth to them or that fleshes them out as a character. The result is that there's no reason to care what happens in the fight betwixt squadron four and the others or betwixt the humans and the goofy roaches.
The roaches continue to be weak villains. Yes, they have numbers and they can overwhelm the heroes we don't have any reason to care about, but at the same time they just look absurd. The changelings in Friendship is Magic looked scarier than these things. Plus, every major hero can still slaughter a large number of them with relative ease.
The artwork continues to be the area where I can give the series some praise. The backgrounds are nicely detailed. The human characters have some nice designs, particularly when you factor in their transformations. The action sequences, though incredibly violent, do have some nice intensity.
Like with the first series, I have to give the cast some credit. They take characters who really have very little to them and they still manage to turn out passable performances. Not good by any means, but passable. This time around Wada Takafumi handles the soundtrack and, I have to say, it's not as good as Murai Shusei's was in the first series. It's all right, but that's about the best that can be said for it.
There might be a little. There's a girl named Hong who seems to have a thing for one of her comrades, Miss Xi. But it's hard to say since the character interactions are so... meh.
That's Terra Formars Revenge. It shares some of the weaknesses of the original, improves in some areas and gets worse in others. Overall, it's a dumb action series that's trying to be more, but failing. Ultimately, I don't think it's worse than the first series nor do I think it's better. My final rating is going to be the same a 4/10. I still have no reason to care what's happening. If your only issue with the first series was the excessive exposition that interrupted the action sequences, you might like this one better. If you, like me, were not fond of the first series or you didn't bother with it because it didn't look like something you'd be into, I don't recommend this one either. If you really liked the first series, the flashbacks, fake-outs and comedic attempts might make you dislike this one but I suspect you'll be fine with it. Next week I'll take a look at Non Non Biyori. Until then, have a fantastic week.