*DISCLAIMER: A very unorganized and SOMEWHAT SPOILERY "review" of Sunshine s2 which might ruin your viewing experience, so I'll just say "you're welcome" in advance for saving your time.
The Love Live franchise has a knack for being the defier of expectations. Those who go into the series expecting nothing but cancer usually end up taking something positive from the experience. Those who go in expecting happy rainbows and sunshine only get slapped in the face with the cold reality that is School Idol Hell. Love Live Sunshine s2 is no exception to this rule, for what was set up to be potentially the greatest installment
in the Love Live anime series ended up being one of the greatest disappointments I've yet to come across.
If Love Live Sunshine had one major step up from its predecessor, it would be how it utilizes subtlety. Very rarely does the show tell you how the characters have developed, and if it does, it gives a great presentation to back it up. Love Live Sunshine actually uses the performances of the girls as ways to show you how much the characters have improved: how the choreography slowly improves from performance to performance, how the amount of band aids Chika has increases from scene to scene. There was no need to state the obvious, or to show Chika getting injured: all of that was inferred through some great shots of Chika just trying her best.
Did I just give Love Live subtlety points? SORRY GOTTA TAKE THOSE RIGHT BACK because at the same time, Love Live falls back into its old habit of friendship speeches, slow motion eureka jumping moments, repeating the same cheesy lines over and over again, and other tactics to not so subtly remind you that this is a show about friendship!
Love live teaches you that you can't solve your problems by shouting into the distance or giving your computer screen your patented GLARE OF DETERMINATION! Instead, shit goes south. Chika goes through a massive identity crisis, hinted through her subtle mannerisms and facial expressions. How is it fixed?
By having the entire school yell at her! Through sentimental speeches thrown from floor to rooftop!
Do you see the problem? Love Live always sets up these plot points with so much potential: the subtle build up, psychological conflict, and with minimal exposition and drag. Only for it all to be resolved with the usual cheesy sentimental monologues or speeches that make you cringe. There are so many opportunities for these resolutions to occur through the same methods as the build up, but noooooo let's have people yelling their solutions while jumping in slow motion, or have the entire fucking school somehow spit out the entire solution to the problem! These cheap resolutions are buzzkills and lazy lazy lazy ways of resolving drama.
Oh course, I won't pretend that Love Live Sunshine s2 is the only installment in this series that has this problem: season 1 had plenty of it, and the OG series too. However, what the OG series did was leave room for potential and improvement, and it actually took the opportunity to improve on a lot of the flaws that it had. This was why season 2 of the original was a drastic improvement, and I can even full heartedly call it good. Love Live Sunshine set up the same opportunity for its sequel to do the same, if not even more. With the way it builds up, it seemed promising at first, but it just devolves back into the same exact thing that made people so critical of the series in the first place.
Changes in directorial styles are nice, but there needs to be some consistency. Love Live Sunshine was commonly criticized for being too similar to its predecessor, and while I agree to some extent, my greatest praise for Sunshine was always how Sunshine felt like a sequel to School Idol Project as much as School Idol Project felt like a prequel to Sunshine. To me, there is no one over the other, there is no battle between Aqours and Muse. They exist together under the Love Live banner, as they should. This was due to how the recycled plot points are used as ways to develop Aqours differently than Muse, and how even though both anime series tackle the same themes, each series usually prioritizes one over the other, or they tackle the theme a different way. For example, Sunshine has more emphasis on the girls actually trying to improve as idols, and this is actually expressed fairly well through the slow improvement of choreography presented in the concert scenes. This contrasts School Idol Project's emphasis on the girls bracing for when they have to disband, something that Sunshine still touches on but not as heavily as School Idol Project. While School Idol Project dedicated more episodes to the fate of Muse, Sunshine spent less time on that theme but featured more dynamic and hardcore methods of exploring that theme, featuring a FUCKING FLYING VAN, lots of cheesy group cheering and crying. Whilst School Idol Project took the more subtle approach on the passage of time by showing the girls doing slice of life shenanigans through timed events, Sunshine brought out the big guns immediately by making the girls taste failure and fly vehicles into the moon. Unfortunately, Sunshine s2 did this pretty poorly as flying vans and having the entire school chant Aqours over and over again isn't a very effective way to convey this message. When the hard hitting, tear inducing, heart pounding, and hope brimmed scenes actually make you laugh your ass off, you know that something is wrong.
The characters of Love Live are the defining factor and also hold the most potential for growth and change. And yet, some things never change. Yoshiko's comedic antics now are about as funny as they were back then (in other words, not at all.) Yoshiko also still had pitiful development. As you can probably tell, one of my biggest hopes for this season was for Yoshiko to finally get some satisfying development. Needless to say, I ain't satisfied. But some things do change, and they are pretty nice. Dia's arc about wanting to be called "Dia-chan" was light hearted and fun, no unneeded sappiness, just satisfying fluff. Hanamaru turned her sass level all the way up, she ain't holding back anymore. Ruby had an entire arc dedicated to her growing independence in a way that also contributed to the whole "Aqours probs gonna disband" plot point. Did this save her from being worst girl? Nah, but it was still a nice touch. Meanwhile, Kanan actually had some screen time this time around. Riko too gained a decent amount of screen time and her personality was more fleshed out. Chika changed from a happy go lucky "I can do anything" character to one with genuine psychological conflicts, similar to the change granted to Honoka.
But in order to grant these characters some quality of life buffs, some other characters gotta be gutted into the ground. Take Watanabe You for example. Formerly an irreplaceable asset and fan favorite of the Love Live Sunshine story line, she was demoted into legitimately the most useless character ever conceived. Even Umi, the sociopathic queen of underdevelopment can't hold a finger to just how absolutely useless You was during this season. If you took her out of the show, nothing would change. This just proves that Sunrise just has no respect for the best girl. An instant flunk! Love Live Sunshine s2, you get a 1/10 for FAILURE!
Is what I would say if they didn't give Sakurauchi Riko, the next best thing, a lot of fluff. The dog episode featuring our homie Sakurauchi Riko is not only the best episode of the season, but one of the best episodes of the entire franchise, rivaling the legendary episode 5 of Love Live School Idol Project s2. But one good episode isn't going to sway my consensus that is Love Live Sunshine s2 may be the worst season of love live to date, if not at least comparable to the mess that is season 1 of the original.
So how does Love Live's sound quality fair for this new installment? Mirai no Bokura wa Shitteru yo is, in my opinion of course, the best OP that Love Live has to offer, not only on a song quality basis but on a directorial basis as well. It perfectly encapsulates the energetic yet melancholic strive to shine that defines Love Live Sunshine. The sparkling light in the beginning that shines down on the members of Aqours also fits the shooting star motif that's commonly brought up throughout the show. Similarly, the ED is definitely a top tier ED, but that is to be expected from Love Live EDs. The seiyuus are splendid as always: I'm a pretty big fan of the Love Live seiyuu scene, especially the Aqours members. I probably like them more than the series itself. When it comes to OST and insert songs, it's a pretty hit or miss experience. There is one piece in the soundtrack (you know the one) that is constantly played during the melodramatic scenes. While the piece by itself is pretty nice I guess, combined with the already over the top scenes in slow motion and tears that probably took half of the animation budget, it's safe to say that the OST played a big role as to why Sunshine is way too sappy. The insert songs hold a similar problem. Whether or not you like them is down to preference, but as I stated before: I liked how Sunshine used the concert scenes to show the improvement of Aqours when it came to choreography. What I didn't mention is how weirdly weaved in one particular piece of choreography was, that being the Chika cart wheel flip move. A whole episode of build up was dedicated to that one move, yet it was transitioned in so badly during the concert scene, it felt more anticlimactic than anything else, oddly placed with no satisfying transition into and out of the concert scene. Another prime example of decent build up with pitiful pay off. Yes, Chika is finally able to do the move, but her ability to do it was triggered by more friendship speeches and an unsatisfying transition. What does this have to do with the insert song? There was no good timing to insert the transition, and the song they used is somewhat at fault for that too.
You may be saying: Yuni, why are you subjecting this random idol anime to unnecessarily high standards and potential that you probably just made up on your own? No one told you to expect a masterpiece, and you shouldn't anally shreck an anime for not being what you expected!
I'm just sad that what could have been done right HAS been done right before in the past, so why not now when the possibilities are greater than ever?
Love Live is all about change and growth. Love Live Sunshine s2 achieves this change and growth but through the worst ways possible. There's literally an entire episode of build up where the 9 girls inner monologue how they have changed throughout the series. There's no implications, no subtlety, just the girls directly stating "oh becoming an idol did this to me." Similarly, the interactions between the girls evolved only very slightly, not at all, or only evolved heavily after major events and get reset somehow. The slight changes in character interactions where a measure to the development of the characters during the original series, and it's missing or played badly in Sunshine, which is a darn shame. Only a select few characters had a little bit of spice added to their interactions, like Zuramaru and Riko. Sure, this season may have delivered the growth that everyone wanted, but it was done in the least satisfying way possible, a sure cause for disappointment to me, the only one around who actually had such high hopes for a lowly idol anime called Love Live! Sunshine!!
Ah yes, and my updated order of Aqours members is:
*sigh* It's Pronounced "Yoh" > Rick > Hannah Mahroo > I wanna Dia > Yohane Sebastian Bach > Kanan you not? > Mary > Kan Kan Mikan’t > Gangstarooby
Love Live has come a long way. It’s difficult to imagine now, but when the first season of School Idol Project started back in 2013, idol anime as we know it today didn’t really exist. Just as µ's was the guiding light for the world of school idols, the franchise led the way for the genre, and by the time of the School Idol Movie, it really had become a global phenomenon. So when µ's retired and Aqours stepped forward to take its place, fans were understandably upset and worried that this new iteration would tarnish or override the franchise’s legacy. But it was never
the goal for Aqours to replace its predecessor, and instead it told its own story about trying to live up to that legacy, and instead accomplishing far more.
While the first season of Sunshine adhered closely to the formula set by School Idol Project, the second season focused on the ways that Aqours was different. The new generation was never going to measure up against the audience’s nostalgia for µ's, and that was reflected in the story. Aqours struggles with challenges that µ's overcame easily, and there are times when they actually fail. These aren’t just failure by circumstance; they will have tried their best and it still wasn’t enough to succeed. We see these characters when they’re at their lowest points, and when they get back up and try again, it makes their victories all the sweeter. The writing is about as subtle as a brick, but it gets the emotions across.
Although, those feelings wouldn’t resonate so strongly if we weren’t so deeply invested the cast and their success. Sunshine relies more heavily on personal drama than its predecessor, and it works because their problems aren’t abstract and artificial walls, but genuine fears and worries to which we can relate. And instead of having to overcome these problems on their own, the other members of the group will reach out to provide support, which sells you on the idea that these characters are actually friends who care about each other’s well-being. It’s true that some members of the ensemble get better treatment than others, with one or two being reduced mainly to one-note gags, but overall the cast is so earnest that you can’t help but root for them.
The growth of the characters is also reflected in the performance scenes, which see the characters becoming gradually more comfortable with complex choreography and each other. For better or worse, CGI has always been a staple of the Love Live franchise, and it’s been getting better with every entry. Early performances looked garish and were plagued by unimaginative camerawork, but both technology and direction have improved vastly, and it’s finally reaching the point that CGI can compete with traditional animation. Performances now come alive with dancing in 3D spaces, and varied shot composition and camera effects make for a real spectacle. It also helps that the songs being performed are really good. Aqours has a diverse discography, ranging from traditional Japanese odori to Broadway show tunes. The soundtrack outside of the performances is excellent as well, effectively matching the tonal shifts over the course of the season. On its technical merits, Sunshine soars.
If I were to look at the anime alone, Sunshine is far from perfect. There’s a lot of valid criticisms that can and should be made, but since that’s not my focus, I’d recommend checking out Yuni’s review, which addresses a lot of them. But for this, rather than just looking at the show itself, I’m also including my own experience watching it, and I find that my enjoyment greatly outweighs any criticisms. For the past 13 weeks, it hasn’t just been the show that I’ve enjoyed, but also being a part of the community that surrounds it. That’s just my personal experience, so it will differ from person to person, but all I can say is that all of the tweets, fanart, and fanfiction that I saw definitely added to my enjoyment.
I’m going to miss this generation. It’s not quite over yet – there’s still the movie – but the end is rapidly approaching. I’ve always appreciated that the Love Live franchise ends stories conclusively; the dream of being a school idol is fleeting, but the lessons learned will last forever. I’m not sure if I’ll be able to love the next generation the same way I loved this one, but the future looks bright, and I can’t wait to see what tomorrow brings.
I didn't come to watch Love Live Sunshine because I looked for some intense and deep story that involves time traveling or... something like that.
I came here looking for cute idols singing, dancing, aiming high and getting there.
And I got exactly what I was looking for.
In Season 2 we didn't really have a "special" story. It's pretty similar to School Idol Project, with the school being at risk, 3rd years leaving and such. But, it felt like it fit to give some background story so I liked it in the end. (7/10 for Story)
The animation and art was outstanding. The CGI
dances were executed super well and I have enjoyed every moment watching it.
Of course there were points where the art dropped off, but it was mostly consistent. (9/10 for Art)
Sound- Which includes Soundtrack/OP/ED/Insert songs. That was the real strength of Love Live Sunshine. These were amazing songs and I've enjoyed every single one of them, I listen to them every day because they were so good.
The soundtrack, too, fit quite well and was nice. (10/10 for Sound)
Well, we have 9 characters, which is a pretty nice amount. So it'll be hard not finding a girl to your liking. They were pretty diverse in their personalities yet so close (as they're all idols), the development between the cast as Aqours, or as one grade (Ex: Chemistry between 3rd years) and all the "ships" were quite outstanding. I found myself really bonding with the characters, and by the end of the anime there are no girls I hate. (10/10 for Character).
So in conclusion, this anime got a 10/10 from me. And I RECOMMEND IT. Even if you don't feel like going through the "comedy to drama" story, just listen and watch to the CGI Dances and songs, as they were too good.
My original review was already really long. And I still stand by all of it. So, I'm just gonna link a pic of that here (https://imgur.com/a/4Bfs5) so that I have more space to talk about a revelation that dawned on me recently. I swear I'm not going to do this often.
So, I'm now 6 episodes in. And I've bumped up my scores for:
Story: From 3 to 6
Art: Remaining at 9
Sound: From 7 to 8
Characters: From 5 to 7
Overall: From 7 to 8
Enjoyment: From 7 to 8
So, you may wonder be wondering. What could have possibly happened to change all of these scores? Basically, the performances
are even better than I thought they were. So the thought came to me when I saw the main character Chika do this absurdly complex move on stage. The first thought that came to mind was, "Okay, I don't care how many days she trained, she did not just pull that off flawlessly"
But then I looked back at the dancing there, and some from previous episodes, and some from last season, and it hit me. The reason why I didn't like the last season as much as this one was because the dancing was INTENTIONALLY bad. The choreography was INTENTIONALLY boring.
Seriously, go back and watch Mijuku Dreamer and Yume de Yozora wo Terashitai. Watch how basic the moves are. They aren't even really working as a team yet, they just need to have enough unity to synchronize actions. And they are often just standing in rows and walking back and forth. Really boring stuff. But that's the thing, they're a brand new group. Of course, they can't pull off cool stuff yet.
I genuinely think this was all planned because even watching Omoi yo Hitotsu ni Nare from episode 11 of season 1, nearing the end of the season, it's clear that the choreography is already a huge improvement over where it started. They're interacting with each other much more. And are playing around with weird positioning and aesthetics.
But it only gets better as season 2 goes on. Every live is stronger in some aspect to the last and they are growing in a way that we can track. Rather than that asinine ranking system from the original Love Live outright telling us, through a number, how much they've improved.
This gives credibility to the narrative that Chika could actually do what she does in episode 6. And it gives the entire series a new layer of depth and complexity that I never considered up until this point. Character growth is clearly presented through their craft so they feel so much more real. The plot points assist in that growth, so the story (even if it's still kinda boring) feels more impactful.
That kind of storytelling through what I thought was already fantastic visuals is what has now made an anime that I reluctantly watched, to now being something I can confidently say is very good.
The following was written after the 1st episode stream:
The new season of Love Live! Sunshine is here, and with it a new whole goal.
First of, the visual part was absolutely beautiful, word´s can´t describe how gorgeous the animation is, there´s no doubt that this is the peak of Love Live! animation, the opening sequence goes through various settings which all are detailed perfectly, accompanied by the new opening theme "Mirai no Bokura wa Shitteru yo", which set the stage for a memorable season.
As for the story goes, you can see the development that the characters had in season one, but maintaining that ambitious nature of
them that lets them keep moving forward.
Now there´s a new goal for the group, it isn´t just saving the school or winning Love Live! anymore, now they´re aiming to make an impact around the world, and do whatever it´s necessary to let a miracle happen.
Also, during the first episode of this season there are a lot of references from the first episode of the first season, but now changing Riko´s and Chika´s role for a moment.
The ending sequence was the most memorable thing to me, sharing a lot of similarities with the first Love Live! endings sequences, the song isn´t only amazing, but it´s also a nostalgia trip through all the franchise in less than 2 minutes.
The wait is over and it was worth it, this season will definitively teach us the meaning of hard work and believing in miracles, and the trip to reach to that point will be a total thrillride, let´s enjoy this moment together!
Now after 13 episodes has passed, I can safely say that this was the best written season of all Love Live!, they didn´t abused the drama but at the same time you can feel connected to the characters, their growth and personal goals, as well as the collective goals for Aqours, having their own unique approach, both as a group and individuals.
As for the insert songs, they can only be described as legendary, they will be remembered for years to come for the ones that got to enjoy this anime.
By the end of the season you can feel how everything from season 1 and this season was connected to give a satisfying conclusion for the ones that payed close attention to the development of each character.
A single 'tags' box can't possibly contain all of my thoughts and feelings for this season.
So, before we get right to it, heavy spoilers, if there's anything worth spoiling anyway.
Love Live Sunshine S2 is shit.
After S1 set the bar for what was, most likely, to be the best season of Love Live ever, maybe even surpassing the masterful S2, ended up being the corniest, most obnoxious, most mind-numbingly boring, most underwhelming experience I've ever had with a piece of entertainment. Yup, this thing is down there with Terminator Salvation and Bioshock 2. But, to
be fair, it's not exactly Final Fantasy X-2. How do I say this? It's a piece of shit but not entirely.
Unlike the older seasons, it looks prettier. The soundtrack is nice. And the 3D animation is nice to look at, not like the awkward CG models they used in the original. The 2D animation is a lot slicker and more animated, allowing for a range of expressions in body language (which they didn't do at all). As for the girls themselves, DO YOU SEE THAT DETAIL? The amount of work they put into making the girls a lot prettier and flashier is impressive. As a training animator myself, I can just imagine the sweat and tears put into the lineart per frame.
Hm, what else... Yup, that's it for the positives, I think. Now let's tear this thing apart.
One of the key things that made Love Live so good was how they utilized drama. Whenever there was a situation the characters couldn't handle, it was always given due care, embracing an amount of subtlety or loudness that always fit the situation. Yes, even the massive outbreak scene in the original S1. The way they build up scenes with music, voice acting, blocking and camera angles manage to convey the emotions the characters are feeling. The other key thing was silence. The characters would only talk when they needed to, and convey what they needed to. This is true for the original and Sunshine S1. The scene where Chika expressed her disappointment and sadness over getting zero votes was masterful. It is a very good example of saying what you need to say: "I'm disappointed, I'm disappointed". Just from these lines alone, you could feel all the emotions pouring out from her, and the strength she lacks trying to cope with the situation. This is a scene I remember to this day, and I've only seen the whole season once, last year. It's masterful, and embraces what Love Live stands for - following your dreams and growing to become better.
See all those great thing I said about Love Live? THIS SEASON HAS NONE OF THAT.
The way drama is handled here is exactly what I expected of Love Live before I watched the original; corny, loud and meaningless. The school is shutting down, they failed to save the school but they have to get up and do Love Live anyway! How do they convey these set of events? In the laziest way possible. Chika is on the brink of losing hope, the group of schoolgirls can't convince her out of it. What saves the day? AN EVEN BIGGER GROUP OF SCHOOLGIRLS. Even at the ending, when they're closing up the school. This is the perfect moment for silence, letting the feeling sink in that 'this is the end and we need to move forward'. But NOPE! Gotta keep telling each other and letting the audience know that "we'll be together foreeeveerrr *heart* *heart*". The way they resolve every instance of drama is just plain lazy. I don't know, but they always feels set up, like it's just there just so something can happen or they say things just to consume empty space when there's no need to. The biggest thing I want to address is the Saint Snow arc. This could've been an amazing arc, rivaling the original S2's Rin and Nozomi episode. But nope, it was a rushed and inconsequential set of episodes about characters that had 0 to no buildup. Ruby is such a disappointing character. She was at least fun and felt involved around S1, but the way they utilized her for this arc, getting involved with Leah because she also had a sister and she was seemingly concerned, doesn't work for me AT ALL. As for Leah, her problem just felt plain shallow to me. Not that it wasn't. Losing the whole competition is something very demoralizing for the two of them. ... So why didn't they show that it was? This is another problem with the show: not putting in good buildup or drama when there was a dire need for it. This arc was in DIRE need for some good scenes, showing the tension between the two sisters, building up Ruby and Leah's friendship while developing the two in some way that it shows us who they are. The series tries, but it falls flat on its face because the scenes really just don't work for me and just feel empty without the proper backing. Ruby building up the confidence to make her own decisions? Great! Where's the part where you established that?? It really just doesn't work for me.
And while we're at the topic, let's talk about the characters. S1 built up these characters to have possibly amazing arcs because of how well established they were, and how their unity felt organic and something that could potentially create amazing and fun mini arcs for the group. But here we are with S2, where the main dilemma is the group's refusal to put -chan at the end of Dia's name. What happened to all the dynamic characterization in S1? You can't possibly tell me that all the things that made each character interesting somehow disappeared after S1? Where did You's confidence issues go? Dia's love for idols? Kanan's love for the sea? When did Aquors' determination to follow their dreams, be free to be themselves and shine yet keep asking themselves what it means to shine?? And turned the girls into uninteresting one-note characters that say the same things over and over ("Buu Buu desu wa" is the most ear grating thing I've ever heard in my life)?
Well, not entirely.
I missed one positive thing about this season - the dog episode. The way they gave Yoshiko and Riko this fun and unlikely friendship over a dog and make them realize things about themselves and each other.To make things better, both subtlety and silence were present. How Yoshiko expressed how she didn't really believe in the occult but did it anyway because she felt something special from it and Riko receiving those words from her reminded me why I loved Love Live so much. And it gave me hope that maybe the series would go back to being good again, but nope it became boring the following episode. I honestly don't even remember what happened. What happened again? And what sucks is that they tossed away this relationship almost entirely after, turning Yoshiko back into a dry joke instead of bringing out her internal dilemma.
I feel a need to address the songs, because really, none of them were memorable for me. They sounded like the filler songs you'd play in SIF. None of them stuck with me at all. They felt cheesy, boring to listen to and I'd occasionally pause in the middle of them to get a drink.
It's relatively easy to get away with the phrase "It's just an idol anime. What did you expect?". It's hard to explain to people that the Love Live is a great series and could be a very meaningful experience. What this season is is precisely what people who haven't seen the show think the show is - just another cute girl anime. Just another corny, boring slice of life show with some music.
This show is an utter disappointment. And I seriously hope future installations strive to do better. But, to Sunrise, this season is probably a smash hit so I'll hope instead that a more competent director or writer comes around. Love Live set the bar high, and I seriously hope someone steps in and meets the quota next time around.
Man. I like Love Live. I loved the first series along with the first season of the second series. I don't expect much from this show because it isn't much, to begin with. It's the kind of show you turn your mind off to and just have fun with. It's about a group of kids working to achieve their dream. But this season really knocked it out of the park with being boring and melodramatic. I hate to say that.
The story relies on cute girls doing cute things to achieve their goal of being "radiant." That isn't a totally bad thing in itself but
this particular season just seemed to lose its way. There wasn't much of a story. They just repeated the same things over and over until the end of the show. It was like the middle of Your Lie in April. You kept seeing the same clips over and over and hearing the same pieces of dialogue from different characters. It was so incredibly boring.
Aside from each and every character looking exactly the same as each other, the animation is very fluid and nice looking. It is very obvious that Love Live! Sunshine!! takes more time to focus on the movement of their characters and quality of the animation and I will give them props for that.
A big part of Love Live! Sunshine!! should have been the music but it took a backseat to the melodrama. I skipped the opening every single time because it just wasn't pleasing to the ear. The songs in the first season each had a personality and theme to it. Each and every song in this season seemed to be a copy and paste of the ones before it. They all sounded the same and that was very disappointing.
In the first season, I thought that the characters from Aqours might have the potential to be even better than the ones from the original but that was shattered. They try very hard to delve into the depths of each character and explore their emotions and feelings but it falls flat. Their motivations and the way that they speak all seem fake. Each conversation has forced metaphors, repetition, and some kind of mushy phrase that is somehow supposed to get you to like the characters more. In reality, it only made more indifferent and bored with them.
The whole thing wasn't terrible but I did not enjoy it nearly as much as I did the previous seasons. At one point in the show, there is a scene where their van flies up into the sky with their rainbows flying out of the back. I think it was at that point that I realized that they ran out of ways to show that the characters were feeling something. I cannot stress how repetitive it is with all of the crying and drama. Even I have become repetitive telling you how repetitive it is.
The cheesiness and corniness of this season have confirmed that there is no need for anymore Love Live! The "story" has been told. If another season is made with new characters I will not be surprised. It's a good way to support your best girl by buying "Love Live pliers." (Yes that is a real thing.) Just save yourself some boredom and cringe and watch something else. You are not missing much.
1. Beautiful music
2. CG way better than 1st season
3. Individual character developments
4. Went to a separate route different from the original series
5. A collaboration with another idol group
1. First 3 episodes were a sore to get through, so many meme materials.
I hated the second season at first. There were just too many meme materials. It's seriously annoying to watch. I struggled through the first 3 episodes and after the first song came out, this series became more and more better, until the point that I rated it an 8/10.
If you don't know, I started watching more anime because of Love Live. I love
J-Pop music before that and Love Live fulfilled all my desires by mixing music and tournament together. It's sad to see that series end. After a year, I heard that Love Live was getting a sequel featuring different characters. I was overjoyed by that. Then, I started following Aqours. I love the first season, although there are a lot of points taken from the original series, nevertheless I still enjoyed watching it. Now I will review these 2 seasons together.
A lot of complaints I saw with this series is that it copies the original series very much making a lot of Love Live fans hating this sequel. But this season manages to fix a lot of them. It went down its original path, parting ways with μ's and I like that. The path they took was also very interesting. I won't spoil you but the development the plot decided to take really did shock me. It's way more different than the original Love Live series.
Speaking of Love Live, of course we are going to talk about the music. It's outstanding. Now I won't compare this to those of μ's because they are 2 complete different groups with different singing styles. The songs in this series really stood out to me. I enjoyed listening to each and every track. The dance sequences were also properly choreographed and the CG was much better compared to previous seasons. Personally my favorite song this season were "My Mai Tonight" and "Awaken the Power", especially "Awaken the Power" where I got to see a collaboration with other group, made me like this season even more.
The characters that Sunrise decided to focus a lot of time on this season, were annoying at first, but slowly after each of their own arcs I started to care more about the and to like them more. It's a surprise to me too because I never thought I would like the characters of Sunshine!! this much. A lot of characters got development throughout this season and that's what made me appreciate this season a lot more.
The art and animation was pretty consistent. Nothing to praise and nothing to complain about.
Overall, I love "Love Live! Sunshine!! 2nd Season" a lot. It disappointed me at first but managed to grab my attention back. Great job! 8/10 That's it for my review. Thanks for reading.
I want to write my impressions of Love Live Sunshine!! season 2 but don't feel like I have that much to say so I will just list what is on my mind.
In season one the characters, while enjoyable, felt like they relied too much on their gimmicks and would fall apart in a longer series. This season address that concern and actualizes many of the characters that felt too gimmicky, especially Ruby and Dia whose relationship is focused on in a later episode. Basically the gimmicks are already established, and still used, but this season spends more time making each girl feel like a real
person, which is nice.
There was a great improvement in the musical performances in this season compared to the first with very good looking cg dances that were choreographed quite well. I particularly liked Miracle Wave which is performed at the end of episode 6. I don't know if they are using completely different software or if they just got better at the technique but all of the cg in the dances looks noticeably better.
The overall positive, emotional and passionate feel of Love Live Sunshine!! driven by Chika's desire to shine is carried by the entire cast of girls in this season so it feels motivating to watch. This season feels like the goal is for Aqours to make their mark on the world and to share their community, who throughout the seasons supports them in their performances for the Love Love. It's actually really endearing to se all fo the Uranohoshi girls supporting Aqours along with the girl's families.
Lastly, setting aside the seriousness this season continues to deliver on what I believe Sunshine season one did even better than the original Love Live, and that is having the girls engage in cute meaningless nonsense with all of their silly personalities. I think that is what Love Live as a series does best and it's always enjoyable to watch.
If you liked any of Love Live I would highly recommend going ahead and watching this season as it may be my favorite of all of them.
Really though, Love Live Sunshine! has been really good. I'll be the first to say that the original grasped me more (as I'm a HUGE fan), but this was still amazing nonetheless! Love Live Sunshine has been a treat, full of smiles, songs as good as the original and improved CGI.
If you're a Love Live fan watch this season for sure, if you haven't seen it before, be sure to watch the original first i'd say (but this isn't a bad start either).
Won't bore you anymore with my fan-girling, now for the more analytic stuff;
Originally this score was lower
because it seemed as though the plot was a carbon copy of the original. Then the added a slight twist (that I won't reveal to keep it spoiler free) that still had the similarities in the plots being more than the differences. But what won me over wasn't these little differences, it was the more meaningful interactions (such as with other idol groups) in the story that built on the plot.
Sure the plot is similar to the first series, but that's hard to avoid when the whole basis is of "school girls becoming idols and trying to win love live". Slightly repetitive at this but a fun, and surprisingly emotional, story, that improved a lot from season 1 to season 2.
THE CGI LOOKS GREAT! Really happy to see these improvements as it now makes the performance scenes tonnes more enjoyable. Nice and easy on the eye, can't complain really.
I'll be the first to say that some of the songs in season 2 have topped those of the previous season and the original. Aqours have great voices and the songs they sing all come together really well. Not quite Snow Halation good, but great in there own right.
So the approach taken was, of course, to make characters that somewhat resemble someone from the original Love Live series. This approach was pretty weak in the first season as it felt like redoing what had been done. However this season, during the character development episodes we see our characters grow to be unique. These episodes really saved the day for these characters, making them more lovable and personal.
What really won me over however is the interactions between characters. The clear bond between the girls in each year. It really was pleasant seeing Kanan treat Mari like a princess, or Hanamaru and Ruby bonding (or just seeing Hanamaru is general).
When watching this season, I didn't sit and binge like I do many other anime series. Instead I'd watch a couple at a time, saving the smiles and purity of Love Live for when I needed it. This season will make you laugh, smile and maybe even cry ( I know I did once). Could, and will, happily watch this season again in the future.
Only reason it isn't a 10 is because it didn't have that wow factor that glues your eyes to the screen.
How sad that I can't give this a higher score.. but it's just not the same. That said Love Live Sunshine! season 2 is another great season, with really pleasant episodes for the individual characters. The characters' growth as individuals, and as a group, sure makes it things enjoyable and helps make the plot shine.
Love Live Sunshine! found it's radiance from my perspective and I would recommend watching this season to the end.
This show isn't for everyone. If you are annoyed by cheesy moments, lots of emotional and melodramatic moments, your probably not gonna like the show. But for me, I enjoyed it thoroughly. Sure it's cheesy, but it's overflowing with charm.
Story: Story is pretty ok. I really didn't like the "saving the school" plot of the last season but this season actually made it me care more about it without having the plot take up almost every episode. A step in the right direction but I still would've preferred it not be so plot-heavy
Art: The normal 2D art is acceptable but the CG has really made
steps forward. The performances look great and a lot less distractingly cheap compared to LL: SIF
Sound: This is completely subjective but I really love Aqours' music. Like last time, every couple of episodes has an insert song and I really liked all of them. I definitely recommend the show to people who like their music if you haven't seen it already. The actual OST in the background is ok too.
Character: Characters get more moments and when they do, the show really shines. The best episodes in my opinion is when they focus on one or two characters with little plot, just letting them all do their thing. Though one issue I have that might annoy people is that sometimes when characters aren't in the spotlight they kind of resort to using their catchphrases a lot. It's like the writers wanted to recreate the success of nico nico nii but overdid it by a longshot. Also, some characters don't get as much screentime as others like You and Kanan.
Overall, this show is really flawed but something about it is really charming and light-hearted. I feel like the people I'd most recommend this to are people who like Slice of Life, definitely people who like idol and musical shows, and people who liked the original Love Live! (though which one they like better is up to the individual, I personally enjoyed this more despite the flaws). Watch Season 1 before this, its pretty good and it, and the show in general seemed to get better as it went on. This show is still going in my favs because, I'm biased to liking the music, and it definitely made me feel something in the end and get me really attached to the characters despite the flaws. Hoping the movie delivers.
TL;DR Yoshiko is best girl, puppet show is best episode in the whole franchise, Love Live memes are top tier, and enjoy idol hell!
(This review has been adapted from my blog/reddit thread. Spoilers ahead!)
Each sunrise brings sunshine. But, eventually, that sunshine must give way to a sunset.
The same similarly goes for Love Live! Sunshine!! 2nd Season, a metaphorical sunset for the school-idol group Aquors and their hard-fought journey. While it does not sing nearly as loudly or as proudly as its prequel, a few rays of hope sneak in nonetheless.
Sunshine 2 (as it will be nicknamed from here on out) picks up almost right after Sunshine 1. The group still has its sights set on saving their school, banding together anew to tackle the Love Live gauntlet again.
Not as separate ladies but as a unified unit with a more-than-zero mentality.
Having addressed its predecessor and its influence – in a thematic sense no less – within the prior season, this season attempts to carve a name out for itself and nobody else. Indeed, mentions, references, or allusions to the famous Greek-lettered group are practically non-existent (if not missing entirely). In doing so, the show breaks away from that looming glare of “they aren’t like them” and moves towards a proper stance of “they aren’t like them.”
This subtle difference appears as Sunshine 2 basks in slice-of-life goodness. Several episodes aim to highlight the quirks and the challenges of the girls in a less dramatic manner, such as episode four with Dia wanting to grow closer with the younger members or episode five with the doggy dispute between Yoshino and Riko.
Not that the series has never had its fair share of this type of content. However, these events align much more with exploring these characters and their situations rather than going for introductions or resemblances (which its first season already did).
Key to the Love-Live formula, Sunshine 2 also incorporates those team-related aspects. They collaborate to write songs. They stick with each other during melancholic happenings. They go on a road trip that solidifies their fortitude (and defies the laws of physics). Chika, Riko, You, Yoshiko, Hanamaru, Ruby, Kanan, Dia, and Mari may be a bunch of individuals, but, when together as one, this season proves they are Aquors first and foremost.
This last season also champions the same atmosphere, making sure not to lose sight of its Love Live origins outright. The mood of the anime maintains that comedic angle as always, and the ultra-optimism in-between, while maybe overbearing at times, continues to lend itself well to an uplifting experience.
But the narrative overall is a downgrade. Where their beginning is mired with loss and difficulty, their ending here stands in stark contrast as a meteoric rise to the top ensues. Granted, the Love Live spectacle itself isn’t really the point of the story being told, especially in this instance where it represents a spiritual win for all involved. Still, a weakened thematic presence and this missing drama reduces impact in the story.
Sunshine 2 tries to make up for that easier rise with its increased focus on the threat of the school closing, but it doesn’t always come through. This dilemma can sometimes get lost amidst its other interpersonal scenes, and their vehement need to keep it around isn’t exactly quantified or justified besides the notion of memories and attachment. Traits the audience do not see much of let alone can relate to.
To its credit, though, the bittersweet direction is interesting, both because of this franchise’s inherent optimism and because it once again chooses to move away from those that came before it. Thus, despite those narrative troubles, Aquors’s journey concludes in solid-enough fashion.
ART & ANIMATION
The interim between this season and the previous season is negligible, so the artistic vision for this next iteration remains practically the same. So, to keep it short and sweet, this sameness is a welcome return to likable form.
The proof is in the performance. For instance, the character designs remain collectively cute yet individually distinct among the lot. Their musical attire takes on a colorful and charismatic look per usual. Choreography for their dances is still easy to follow (CG or otherwise). Increased actual animation highlight the fun in their actions. Expressions contort into hilarious responses.
Sunshine 2 fails to have its settings and backgrounds reach the same level as these other visual elements, but that’s perhaps expected since (to reiterate) the artistic direction has been carried over into this sequel season. That also means that it reaches the same level of strength as before, so it’s certainly not a major problem.
In Sunshine 1, establishing the characters meant exploring their reasons and their struggles before joining on as an official member. Here in Sunshine 2, the anime explores other conflicts surrounding the ladies, but it also has a much tougher time juggling them in conjunction with the plot.
A few characters certainly have their moments. Ruby receives a large amount of attention as her relationship with Dia, her older sister, becomes a point of contention regarding maturity and “moving on” later in the season. The anime steps it up another level when it draws parallels between them and the sister duo of Saint Snow. And Chika herself earns some time as the prospect of failure challenges her determination and her resolve (in flip-like motion) not only for the sake of the rest of Aquors but also for her own sake, too.
Yet some characters seem woefully left out: Hanamaru, You, and Mari come to mind first. Phrasing it obtusely, they’re there but not there. Hanamaru seems reserved for comedic relief only. You sticks with mostly a supportive role. And Mari exists as the arbiter of the closing school and not much else. Arguably speaking, these characters had their problems already taken care of in Sunshine 1, but so did everyone, so it feels odd to leave a sizable chunk of the cast on the sidelines.
Sunshine 2 gets back on track when it enlarges the scope from their singular characters to the intrateam dynamic. For example, third-years Mari, Kanan, and Dia (Dia, as can be gleaned from this analysis, appears to be around the most) acknowledge their separation after graduation but likewise know that, at least in their hearts, they’ll be together forever.
More generally, they rally around each other as a group, solidifying their camaraderie as their shared reams become a reality. It happens a lot. Back in episode three, they initially split up to take care of two back-to-back events but eventually realize that their strength derives from their collective. Even the smaller pillow-fight scene before the big night in episode twelve helps to highlight the friendships they have fostered over the course of their whole adventure.
Yet other dynamics hit speedbumps as well. Chika and Riko’s relationship, despite being so vital in the first season, fizzles out to some extent. And, despite being around one another for so long now, the ladies rarely cross party lines, sticking with their year’s internal group for the most part rather than crossing over, missing out on jokes and possible bonds as a result.
In the end, Sunshine 2 simply doesn’t have as much to say about Aquors. Be it because of the strife they already went through last season or this season’s failure to really include everyone in the festivities, it leaves the nine girls in a precarious position.
MUSIC & SOUND
Per usual, the various parts of the audio within a music-centric anime like Sunshine 2 are held to a slightly higher standard. Unfortunately, this season succumbs to a middling rendition once again.
The opening track, “Mirai no Bokura wa Shitteru yo”, has a similarly grand feel as last time, using bells, drums, pianos, and other brass instruments. But the first half or so of the song misses out on catchiness and intrigue as the buildup meanders. However, the second half swoops in with tons of passion as the vocals soar with that mandatory optimism.
As for “Yuuki wa Doko ni? Kimi no Mune ni!”, this new ending track follows suit as well in a negative fashion. It’s an okay track with more of a fantastical feel, a neat little lyrical “reverb” part near the end, and many different takes done by different members of the cast. Sadly, though, okay just doesn’t cut it.
Especially so when the insert songs of Sunshine 2, at least a couple of them, demonstrate maturity and prowess in both the song writing and the musicality. A special shout-out goes to one such song: “Awaken the power”. While ironically not an exclusively Aquors song, it stands as one of the best the whole franchise has put together thanks to its changes in pacing, instrumentation, and vocal delivery.
Moving on, the original soundtrack also starts to grow on the listener. It was already pretty swell, but its main motif and poignant arrangement, found throughout several tracks, elicits even more emotion, either because the series is coming to a close itself or it has been lightly patting the audience on the back for the past twelve (twenty-four in total) episodes now.
And the voice-acting performances remain passable in execution. The women behind Aquors sound more comfortable in their roles when compared to the first season, and their experience in talking and singing moves ahead a bit. Again, while nothing special, their relative newbie status and their commitment to these quirky personalities deserves some props within Sunshine 2 for sure.
I greatly liked the first season, so I selfishly expected the same here. It didn’t quite reach that same level of entertainment, but I can’t lie and say I didn’t find myself laughing or smiling or cheering during its run.
My favorite characters Yoshiko and Hanamaru were in full force with their silliness and their reactions. Sometimes they would team up for duo hilarity, and I liked them all the better for it. Kanan, one of my other favorites, wasn’t as prominent, but her “hug” line as she got scared of the dark was too cute to forget.
Of course, I still liked the rest of the cast as well. Riko dealing with her fears. Ruby and her “Rubesty!” catchphrase. Mari’s frequent English usage. You with her saluting as always. And Chika leading with happiness aplenty. Maybe oversaturation occurs with their signature jokes, such as Dia’s “wrong-answer” buzzing and definitely Yoshiko’s “It’s Yohane!” response. Nonetheless, they were all once again a likable troupe of idols who not only tried to the best of their ability but also created a heartwarming environment whatever they happened to be doing.
Lastly, the performances were often a spectacle as always. The meanings behind them and the concert-esque structure. So many colors and formations. So much winking and hand flourishing. Emotions for days. I’m a huge metalhead (e.g., black metal, death metal, and each subgenre therein), but I found myself grabbed by their setpieces for the last time.
And so, this chapter of the franchise concludes (save for whatever other films and song-releases they have on the horizon; announced or otherwise). It hasn’t been the most perfect or sensational follow-up to a beloved series, but this second season – and indeed this entire second iteration – has been a respectable outing regardless. I look forward to seeing where the (inevitable?) third iteration goes next.
Love Live! Sunshine!! 2nd Season waves goodbye to Aquors but gives them a solid farewell tribute in the process. While most aspects of this season do not live up to the previous prequel, its unconventional plot direction, its nice production values, and its strong sense of entertainment make up for some of the woes in its character writing. But no worries. There’s always another sunrise right around the corner.
Story: Fine, a bittersweet ending, slice-of-life segments, and the focus on group activities compete against missing narrative nuance and weak drama
Art & Animation: Good, following the footsteps of its immediate ancestor, the visuals alight with cool choreography for the dances, noticeable movement, and cute designs
Characters: Bad, while specific characters and dynamics vouch for some of the ladies, the cast members have a hard time either being relevant or establishing relationships for most of this finale
Music & Sound: Fine, the OP and the ED are another step down when compared to before, but the insert songs, the OST, and the VA performances do not go the same way without a fight
Enjoyment: Good, hilarious still, engaging in its routines, and a respectable sendoff of this second tale
So a second season of Aqours girls, I don't think it was that good. It had potential to be better, I liked the first season of Aqours, but I think I'm through with Love Live anime now. I had trouble finishing this season because it was so cringy and cheesy. At times I wanted to choke Chika because she was so irritating. Her constant babbling about mysterious shine of school idols was just bullsh*t to be honest. You love school idols, I get it, you want to shine like them "kira kira blah blah blah". Why that stuff was almost in every episode, I've had
enough. Things like this and absurd overdone symbolic scenes like Flying van were so cringe-worthy, yes it's shiny, it's a joke and friendship is magic I get it. Ok that last one was from different franchise... my mistake.
Sure Love Live has always been about cute girls doing cute things with unnecessary drama. Maybe it was just that my personal quota of shiny school idols was filled and there was nothing wrong with this season of Love Live. But I think that style was also changed a bit. It was too damn serious at times, somehow slow and boring and jokes were not that great either. Stories were boring but overly dramatic making them extremely cheesy and awkward. Many times they also lacked common sense making plot holes shine brighter than school idols.
Sure there were good things as well. Loved the episode with the dog, sure it was a filler but it actually developed relationship of Yoshiko and Riko, or Yohane and Riri. Saint Snow episodes also developed Ruby a bit and I like her a bit more now, same with Saint Snow that actually developed far more than Aqours did during the entirety of two seasons. I didn't care about them in the first season but now they were more interesting than the main idol group for me. Something actually happened for them and they got over it.
Dia, my favorite, was also developed a bit, but in direction that I didn't like that much, she is now some sort of meme factory like Mari or Yoshiko/Yohane- Bzzzt- that's not the way to go.
I honestly didn't like this "bzzzt"- thing, it was not needed, it reduced Dia to one meme-character. She was actually a good character, responsible, proud and bit of a perfectionist type, loving but strict big sister, president of student council, traditional but little too uptight. Sure she was a sort of the joke in the first season too, her secret love for school idols was not the thing in the game etc., but this "Bzzzt"- thing feels like she was replaced with a meme button this season.
Aqours had so much potential, but I feel like this season failed to use it to make characters more interesting. I play Love Live SIF game and I feel like most characters are much better in the game- they are deeper and more interesting than their anime versions that tells a lot since they mainly just say same things when you tap them. And you still learn to love them more.
Story 5: Very poor continuation for Aqours. Spoiler: they win Love Live.... which happens offscreen (because they think you are more interested in Chika's thoughts obviously, too bad they are boring) Spoiler 2: Their school is still not going to be saved. This was actually a good thing, it would've been useless repetition of the same plot if the school would've been saved by school idols again. But the way this plot point is done is not really good. Resolution takes so long and all that angst for the loss of Uranohoshi school is taken so far I don't care anymore. Yeah it's sad. Let's mourn it a few episodes more it's not boring at all. Bzzzt wrong answer it IS boring.
Art 8: This anime sure looks good, visuals for the songs and all, that is not an issue.
Sound 8: This is not an issue either. Songs and voice acting are strong points. Some VA:s in Aqours are very talented. I especially want to praise Aika Kobayashi, for her voice work as Yoshiko and Yohane. She has these two different voices and she uses them so well. No problems with singing or acting, not complaining about that. This is still good and some songs are my favorites like My Mai Tonight.
Characters 5 : Aqours cast is perhaps even better than Muse in some ways, but this season didn't use it well. We mostly focus on Chika (sighs), a bit on Kurosawa sisters, some Riko and some Yoshiko. Mari does some things as well as Kanan but I don't remember anything special about them- they just are there. Same with Hanamaru, she is there and her home at the temple is shown, but I don't remember any focus being on her. I think that most seriously neglected character is You who is on the background but completely forgotten. Her jealousy of Chika and Riko was the source of drama in the first season but now that is dropped and instead there is useless drama between Chika and school, Chika and School idols, Chika and shining, Chika and mikan oranges. Yuri-baiting has been the best things in this show to be honest so this lack of it this season is very disappointing. We have that one dog episode that makes Yohariko (or Yohariri?) partially canon though. I am not expecting official material to go far with yuri-aspect in show like this, it is left for fans to speculate and find their own shippings (if that is your thing), but I feel like this season was especially boring for those expecting even some girly bonding as there was a lot of that during the first season.
We get to see some (pure) sisterly love with Ruby and Leah/Ria of Saint Snow wanting to show to their big sisters that they manage alone as well. That was actually quite touching and those episodes along with the Yohariri dog-episode were only ones that were somewhat entertaining for me.
Character development is minimal and mostly non-existent. Chika has to accept that school is going to be closed and that is so very very hard- so hard that she seriously expects people to enlist to their school in the middle of the night minutes before deadline. Hope is good thing to have for sure, but seriously that is pathetic lack of rationality even from this human-shaped mikan orange. Similar plot-holes are numerous this season. Like the episode in which they have to use mikan orange picking monorail (yay- mikan oranges- that is what Chika-chan has instead of personality or brain) to get in to their live show. And we have seen Chika's family has a van and yet no one even considers the possibility of using it.... no we have use unconventional method of transportation because mikan oranges in everyone's mouth make better memes.
Enjoyment 3: This anime was agony to watch at times. Constant face palms made my face (and palms) hurt.
Overall 5: Mediocre continuation for pretty promising first season. Mikan oranges were bitter and all that Chika's constant shining was so radioactive I fear I got the cancer. Not even Yohane could save me from this School Idol Hell.
Cringiest anime I had ever watched. Worse than Love Live even the first season of sunshine. This is also my first review. I need to do a review to warn the folks out there to not watch this anime if you're not a fan of idols. I repeat, do not watch if you're not a fan of idols.
The cringe here is very real. I almost gave this a 1 overall but there is some few laughs here and there so I give it a 2.
In terms of story.....meh. Muse did it better and a LOT less cringy.
In terms of characters....eh, I'm not really invested
in any of them so...meh.
Love Live Sunshine's 2nd Season by the by gives us the conclusion to Aquors journey to the Love Live stage with all the hijinks and heartbreak all under the banner of fixing the mistakes of the original Love Live series and doing it well.
LA first thought that Sunshine's spinoff series was nothing but a pale imitation and meta joke to the original series, however by this second season, this season utterly changed what LA thought of Aquors and their goal.
The second season left off from the first, but this time more character development from the characters that "kinda" needed it. Let's
start off with Dia essentially getting way more screentime and meme worthy scenes than ever before making her LA's second favorite character by the end of it. Riko and Yohane got a joint character development together and though LA liked Riko and Yohane's friendship and everything, their development was slightly off executed in terms of themes, but nonetheless Yohane continued to be LA's favorite character even through it all. Now the more interesting character developments came from RUBY of all people as well as their rival Saint Snow's Ria Kazuno. This is one of the first things LA noticed Sunshine's second season did better than the original series, that of showing that even rival idols have their own problems of their own in comparison to aRISE who were already famous and popular and knows how to solve everything. Together with Ruby, we get some great double sister sibling character development from Dia, Ruby, Ria and her older sister Seira at the same time. Lastly would be Chika herself and how she develops as both a leader and how she handles everything and trying to be the best to save her school.
-sigh- and even the second season won't give You a PROPER CHARACTER FOCUSED EPISODE...
Sunshine's 2nd season for LA at least showed that it wasn't trying to be a pale imitation of the original, this time, it was gonna fix the mistakes of the original.
From the aforementioned rivals being looked at a different light to the finale and eventual change of goal that Aqours goes through was a welcoming change even if this second season by in large was going at a slightly slower pace but the same flavour and personality it always had in the first season.
The animation done once again by Sunrise was typically of great quality, from the shiny character designs and beautiful backgrounds. The concert scenes by in large though it has Love lIve's typical CGI, like in the first season, it looked polished for the most part in terms of CGI, but the choreography and backgroundings for some of the concerts were GORGEOUS to look at some times. Seriously this might have been Sunrise trying to outdo themselves in the animation department.
In terms of voice acting, it was pretty much the same from the first season, with some highlights of Ai Furihata getting some limelight as Ruby to Aika Kobayashi doing her chunni thing as Yohane. However for LA, the best voice actor goes to Dia's voice actor, Arisa Komiya. Nonetheless the same old voice cast, but for LA, they honed in their character even more this season.
Sunshine's second season because of how it dealt with Aqours' problem head on with a few hijinks here and there, it was serious for the most part as to what kinds of leaps and bounds, constant trials and tribulations Aqours went through to the point, you can't help but root for these underdogs and maybe even make them want to win Love Live! after everything they have been through.
If Love Live Sunshine's 2nd Season did anything for it's finale was give a fulfilling conclusion that we all wanted and Sunshine gave it to us in spades. Yes something this second season outdid or something the original series never did give us was "closure". From giving us what the 9 members of Aqours is gonna do in the future to resolving all plot threads, making us root for these character and maybe Aqours might win and giving us actual closure on what happens to Aqours and the school, something not even the Love Live Movie or the original's second season never did.
From pale imitation of the original, to fixing the mistakes and improving of the original series' formula, Sunshine's Second Season was a great sendoff to the series with no loose plot threads, giving us characters to root for, character development *cough* cept You, seriously no You episode C'MON *cough* that help flesh out the majority of Aqours all under the typical Love Live personality and spunk it had in the original series.
I had my score as a 6 for this show for a long time. It only took some reflection a few months later to realize how biased i am towards the LL franchise just because I adore the music. This show, especially this season, is bad. Just bad. It tries to be something it's not just because it feels as if it must live up to the original LLSIP. The original truly acts like a shackle to this new installment. In many ways, Sunshine trying to go out of its way to feel different from the original comes off as a reskinned idea, or simply
uninspired. But enough about the first series, this show is bad on its own. It hits some fine emotional points in the first half, but my god that second half. I am truly convinced, the writers came up with the plot as they went on. It had no direction. Nothing served as thematic presence on its own, nor did it work to build up anything by itself. Most of the time, it felt like it was being emotional, just for the sake of being emotional. Love live sunshine season 2, is just kinda shit and I'll probably watch it again someday OMEGALUL
I always knew about this franchise through memes and gifs, so two or three months ago, I decided to binge the whole series. Sunshine season one was a MASTERPIECE, I felt like that's how you should end a first season. I was so excited I binged the second season, but around the halfway point, the whole the school is closing down plot didn't really phase me anymore.
What I loved about the original series was I got a sense of WHY the girls loved their school to death and what saving it meant to them. However with the second season of sunshine, the only reason
I could see everyone wanting to save the school was because they all met there. Now that's not a bad reason why, but since the girls always hanged out together and had a good amount of chances to save the school, I didn't get why they were so upset like they didn't make any progress or do anything at all. With mari, dia and kanan, I totally get why they felt so bad they couldn't save the school, they had the authority and some influence in the school, but for the first and second years, they could still ALL go to school together.
I love yohane and riko the most but what uspet me was instead of yohane actually improving as a character she remained the same. I expected once she talked to riko about why she had her complex and continues to use it, she'd either stop doing it as much or find some compromise with it but instead she just embraced it more for some odd reason. It felt like some characters had some development while others remained the same, it only bugged me because we had literally a whole segment where everyone said how being an idol changed them.
Ever since I finished sunshine season two, I've been hooked on the mobile game. Aquors has such good music, it always brightens my mood, my favorite song have to be zero to one, it really hits home. I really enjoyed season two of my new favorite franchise, but every time I think of the ending, I don't feel anything. I wanted to feel sad and excited for the movie based on the final episode but I had more of an "oh, it's over now? mkay" moment instead. Sunshine was a bright and sunny day then all of a sudden it became party cloudy with a high chance of rain for me, season one was everything I wanted. Season two felt like it pulled on my heartstrings a little too much for my taste.
All here is very brand-new Love Live! because i found many of new things from this series of Love Live!. but, it still have a same format with first series Love Live!.
If the first series tell about "Victory", this series tell us about "Determination". Every character in this series have a lot of development and make me curious "what next will happen?!!". Story looks like not how the member reach their dream but only they activity to spent a time every day before they school shut down. But, thats the point how i love this series. Every character show us they unique personality and how
they grow up.
"Where theres a meeting theres separation" CMIIW. I think thats the point from the end of this series.
This is my first review so a few notes:
• Will contain LIGHT SPOILERS (unrelated to the main plot or indirect as much as possible)
• I don’t know much shit about analytically reviewing a show so if it’s a BUU BUU DESU WA feel free to tell me.
• Not every point I made came from me. I didn’t have a SHINY revalation to suddenly think of such ideas. This is a disclaimer, so to speak.
Got through the cringe? Well there’s more:
Love Live is [the only] one of those shows for me to have such mixed opinions of. Basically it is a regular cute-girls-doing-cute-things show but *WITH DRAMA*. Now explaining
how I am attached to this franchise would be too long and too hard, so to summarize: It started as a somewhat guilty pleasure which then developed into something I unironically adore. So it wouldn’t be a surprise that when this season came out I stayed until midnight just to see the latest episode. It was a fun ride, but personal enjoyment alone doesn't make a series great.
From the beginning of ‘Love Live! Sunshine!!’ , Aqours had a goal –“ to shine”. With how the story plays out, I can say they did. They even shined brighter than their predecessor, μ's. The way the series was handled is an improvement over the original. How they did it is through focusing and expanding on plot points that were pretty much ‘extras’ in the original School Idol Project. That’s not the only thing though. The most notable improvement you can see in the story is the change in one major aspect of the show. This change is mostly the reason that differentiates it from the original. But for something that is the defining aspect of the show, it had dragged on for too long. It is special, just not when its repeatedly shoved into your face until the end.
Now I did say Aqours achieved their goal to shine, but not actually entirely. Aqours’s main goal is really to “find their OWN radiance.” This is the series’ biggest flaw. It stops at improvement. It doesn’t go for anything new. I can understand that it wouldn’t be Love Live if did do so, but the premise, setting and charcters were already enough for that. Yet they just had to copy the plot and only decided change some aspects to make it seem new. Let me tell you, being new and being different are two separate things. LLS just settled on being a twist from the original. Aqours may have shined brighter, but the radiance didn’t start from them.
Being a popular franchise in Japan, you can expect this to be high-budget. So with the privilege of having high production value, does the art really deliver? Yes and No. It was used where it mattered, and it really shows in the final product – from the CG, backgrounds(which perfectly resemble their real-life counterparts) and even the characters themselves. Where it does fail though is when the scenes don’t “matter” enough—the comedy and slice of life moments. Basically, if the scene is meaningful or dramatic, it is a pleasure for the eyes. If not, its crappy to the point that even memes were made out of it.
Probably the best thing about to come out of LLS 2 are the songs. It’s amazing when an OP and ED can add so much to the story itself. The OP, with a more serious tone, prepares you for what’s going to happen and the ED gives you the theme of the show with the feelings of the characters themselves. As for the insert songs, they are the culmination of the growth of Love Live as a franchise. Ever since SIP the songs were already diverging from the normal idol-type songs. It is only in this season of Love Live that the songs are so diverse while also, again, meaningful and adding to the narrative.
But if the OP, ED or insert songs are not your thing, there is always the soundtrack for the shows. This includes, but is not limited to: melodramatic piano, “ZURAAAAA”, and “Dakara, Yohane yo!” There is, sadly, a decrease in “Shiny!” and “Buu Buu Desu Wa!” however that is made up for by lots and lots of “PIGIII!1!!1!” and “Kagayaiteru” to ensure there is never a dull moment throughout the show.
It wouldn’t be Aqours without its members, and it wouldn’t be Love Live without character-specific episodes. Yes, the franchise still suffers from giving a certain character a certain episode in order to highlight her charm and to create “character development”. But how do they showcase a character exactly? It’s really simple, honestly. First, you got to think of a catchphrase or a pose for her. Second, you basically turn her into a living meme. And when its finally her time to take the spotlight; you create a new problem totally unrelated to her character, make a whole episode revolving around it to show ‘development’ , then not actually fixing it by the end…ok, maybe that last part was pointed towards a specific character [ I can’t help it if it’s one of my best girls , can I? ]
For a serious answer though, Aqours both as a group and each individual member(for better or worse) have come far since the first season. Of course, the character-specific episode remains, but some of it did help to advance the plot. The main problem is actually how the characters’ screentimes were balanced. For a show which aimed to promote each and every single girl, it failed to do so. Some were given too much screentime while others were barely noticeable throughout the season. I mean, a scene where the main character is chasing a non-existent gift could better be used for her best friend who was only showing up when giving a salute.
This is something I personally want to add since it is also what gives Love Live! Sunshine!! its identity. This is something SIP lacked, or atleast didn’t give focus to. THIS is what allowed everything—story, music, character— to connect to the viewer. At least for me it did. Its best to watch and interpret yourself, but if I had to put it in a few words:
Step! ZERO to ONE
ENJOYMENT & VERDICT:
As a fan, there is no way I wouldn’t enjoy it. Nothing else to say there. I love it regardless of my viewing experience and my opinions on it. It was a fun, Thrilling One Way ride from start until the end. A solid 98/100 for me.
As for my verdict on the series, all I can say is that it is an improvement. If you look at it as the successor to μ's, it would be an 8/10. If you look at it as a series in general, it is a 7/10. Why? The reason why LLS is good is because it gets compared to SIP. If you look at it as just Love Live! In general, flaws will definitely be seen.
So is it worth a watch? Despite me shitting on it, YES. It is a show full of WONDERFUL STORIES and wonderful characters. It has beautiful character design with a story that is actually given an ending within only 2 seasons. But most of all, its a fucking lovable cancer show. If you appreciate the show for what even if at times it is devoid of logic, you’re gonna have an enjoyable experience.
What are you waiting for? Hop on this HAPPY PARTY TRAIN of hype and enter Idol Hell.