Ex-convict turned Rakugo apprentice Yotarou has finally taken the name of Yurakutei Sukeroku III, and with his master Yakumo's permission has attained the lofty rank of shin'uchi. He assumes the name at a critical time for Rakugo, with audiences fewer than ever. At the same time he has started acting as a husband to Konatsu, who is now a single mother. Yotarou thus begins the struggle to fill the role of Sukeroku, both as the future of Rakugo and as a part of Yakumo's and Konatsu's lives.
The first season of Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu was the absolute best anime of Winter, 2016, and very possibly the best anime of that entire year. It was certainly the most moving, truly adult, drama I've seen in a long time. Appropriately enough, since rakugo is the art of storytelling, the first season took the form of a story within a story, telling an incredibly moving tale of a complicated friendship, tragic choices, and the repercussions of those actions for people living in the present day. It was haunting, memorable, and it's been a very, very long year waiting for the sequel.
Appropriately enough, the second season starts with a recap told in the form of a rakugo tale--this was an absolutely perfect, and perfectly logical, choice. You're immediately transported back into the space of the rakugo theater, and anticipating the next chapter of the big story ahead. This time, we're completely in the present day (or at least as much as is possible, for the past always informs the present day for the characters in this drama), and instead of learning about rakugo's past, we get to see how it's faring in contemporary Japan. We also learn how, or whether, the main characters can move forward with their own lives.
The real joy of this show is to see how Yakumo (the perpetually stubborn, dissatisfied, depressed, and yet extraordinarily charismatic rakugo master), Konatsu (now a mother, and thankfully just as stubborn, prickly, passionate, and intelligent as always), and Yotarou (a newly-minted rakugo star, always playing the fool but clearly much smarter than he likes to appear) interact. This show is written beautifully, giving time for characters to develop slowly, allowing conversations to unfold naturally, and always making room for silent spaces that are just as powerful as the most dramatic dialogue-heavy scenes. There's absolutely no reason in the world for these three to be connected. From decades-long resentments to daily irritations, the only way to explain it is that they're a (very unconventional) family, and sometimes you don't get to choose those deep connections that bind you far more powerfully than you may ever realize.
The second season of Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu may just be better than the first. After living with this story and its protagonists for a while, it's easy to appreciate the nuances of character and dialogue that characterize almost every scene of this show. After the enormous revelations and emotional impact of season 1, even small developments now take on new dimensions. Plus, this season is about the future. It's exciting to see what happens next. After falling in love with this story and its characters, I never wanted it to just remain in the past. I'm glad that we can look forward as well.
This show is a masterpiece of storytelling, as it should be. It knows that life doesn't often proceed by giant dramas and great occurrences. Life is the incremental accumulation of moments, and these sedimentary layers, overlapping across lived time, comprise each of our pasts. As every new memory, experience, or choice is added to that slowly forming bedrock, the character of the whole is forever changed. While we are a product of our past, the present continually shapes us into something new. It's captivating to see these layers form in Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu, and it's joyful to see how life is always surprising, intoxicating, and forever a source of beautiful, shimmering stories.
Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu is definitely a masterpiece. The 1st season was aired last Winter 2016 and I thought Erased is the Anime of that season until I saw this series.
My first impression was this series is kind of boring until that scene on the 1st episode when Yotaro falls asleep as Yakumo progresses on his Rakugo performance and I felt like "wtf, this show" and it was freaking epic like the show was self-awared. I finished the 1st season and man this show is a pure masterpiece. It is definitely not for everyone but for people who loves this kind of thing; It really is a godtier show.
Story 10 - What can I say? Tight Writing, Top notch narration, Stellar executions and the show have this 2 treats
1. Rakugo Performances
2. The Story Plot itself
While the performances sucks you into the series, the plot gets better and better every freakin episode. Every episode is a masterpiece because of their very well executed plot.
For now the plot is very well written and I just wanna dive into the next week's episode ;--;
Art 9 - Other might say the Art is 7 or 8, NOOOO!. Yes they have those normal/average animation, "BUT" the cinematography in this series is so astounding. The thoughtful editing, masterful direction, stellar executions the series have is just more than enough. And the animation was used very smart, It is like a real human moving with a soul I would say. ( It is definitely detailed )
Sound 10 - The sound is on point, every important scenes have those very unique traditional soundtracks that helps the scene to stand out. From its shounen kind of Opening that really gave me goosebumps every freakin time to Very mellow ending with a happy tone to it but still they makes you very emotional.
Characters 10 - Very very very very good set of Characters, well fleshed out, well written, very well executed character developments.
Also props for the voice actors which they did a very great job putting these characters into life and having such toptier acting on those major scenes and even small interactions.
Enjoyment 10 - From finding this series as a boring one to being a complete masterpiece as of now.
Overall ( 9.8 ) 10/10 for me "A perfect anime but not for everyone" Deserves to be the best Anime of 2016 interms of "Good Quality" not "Popularity". No one can even come closer to Rakugo this winter 2017 ( not being biased here, it really is a topnotch series. )
This is the second season of Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu, a show about "rakugo", a form of comic japanese theater, where a person stands alone at the stage only with a fan and acts like several characters, telling stories that can have many different styles, scary stories to children tales, from daily life scenes to magic tales.
But actually this anime is not about rakugo. It's about the life of two friends that get to know each other and care about each through rakugo, and rakugo allow us the viewers to understand the personalities and inner feelings, life story and future of these characters. In the first season we got to know the past of these two friends, and now in this season we get to know the future.
Why you should watch this show?
- If you like japanese culture and traditional arts you will be pleased to learn about rakugo. Humor is one of the most cultural things in the world. At first I could not find funny the stories (the public would laugh and I would be like, "soo?"), but know I understand better why they are entertaining stories and what is the funny thing about them. The show is very smart: when the rakugo stories are being told, music it's key to get the feeling and the atmosphere they are projecting.
- You are gonna love all the characters. They are just like real people, with good and bad feelings, they love and hate each other in the same way we do everyday with the people we really care about. They are gonna make you laugh and cry, you are gonna be happy with them in the times of joy and you are gonna be sad with them when there is tragedy. They are very well developed, they grow, they change and learn, or maybe they are stuborn and they don't let the past die, just like the rakugo characters.
- Animation it's lovely. The art for sceneries is beautiful. But what I like the most it's that they could have made something very easy but they did not: when a rakugo story is being told, they could have just animated the whole thing, but no, they are showing you the story teller and just from time to time they show you what is going on inside their imagination with pictures. Pay close attention to how the characters behaviour changes from they daily life to when they are telling a story, facial expressions, voice tone... it's a remarkable job.
- Given all I have said before, rakugo is the art of telling a story, and this anime it's certainly one of the best I have seen in that sense: the story development, twists, way to be told is magnificent. I feel like I'm reading a great book from Soseki or Dazai... I don't exagerate when I say that every episode feels too short, like it was only 2 minutes and it's over, and you just want more of it.
Finally, don't watch it if you have not watch season one. If you already watched season one, I recommend watching it again, at the same time you watch this one as there are many references and subtle things that are worth to notice. Nothing in this show is random, as in a rakugo story, every word, gesture, movement has a meaning and it's very easy to miss them when you watch the first season for the first time.
To sum up, I love this show and I really hope you will like it too!read more