The continuation of the first season. Sawako Kuronuma and her friends have just begun their second year of high school and they are in the same class together again. To make matters more interesting a male student newly transferred into their class is seated right next to Kuronuma and has taken an interest in her. What hurdles will Sawako and Kazehaya face next?
When I first heard that there would be a continuation of Kimi ni Todoke I was overjoyed but also filled with great trepidation. The original had a less than stellar ending, so the prospect of getting a worthy finale to the series was an exciting opportunity. But at the same time I know the track record when it comes to sequels in anything, and considering how much I loved the original I feared it would be impossible for it to live up the expectations I had for it. In the end both came true in a way, being at the same time
better and worse than the first season.
What really attracted me originally to Kimi ni Todoke was the way it broke the typical shoujo stereotypes and mostly stayed away from them. Instead standing many of them on their heads and having fun with them. It stayed away from love triangles, misunderstandings, and the other typical cockblocks that plague romance anime. This begins to change somewhat from episode one when we are introduced to a new character Kento Miura. A character that could only have one purpose and a type that anyone familiar with the genre could recognize from the start. While in retrospect I probably shouldn't have been surprised that a rival might make an appearance, I also think that it’s a bit out of character for the series as well. Sawako is just too innocent and simple of a personality to have her heart swayed by the appearance of additional bishies. Though his character doesn't really pan out the way I feared he would, I am still left wondering if it was even necessary to include him at all.
As much as Kento's arrival initially annoyed me, the main problem overall with this anime is the frustratingly slow pace. This started to bother me in the first season towards the end but most of the time you just found yourself tapping your cheeks and exclaiming, "Aw, they're so cute!" However now I found myself more often pounding on the arm of my chair screaming, "Get on with it already!" The constant string of misunderstandings and hand-wringing gets old really fast. There is a limit to how clueless, how bashful, and socially awkward two people can be. And this is the source of most of my frustration with the plot.
However, as much chagrin and annoyance as most of the series' pacing caused me it’s almost completely offset by how it ends up. All of my expectations were fulfilled as we are treated to a wonderful culmination of their struggles to reach each other’s hearts. We are even treated to something that we rarely get to see in romance stories, the after the confession story.
Another rewarding aspect of this season is the continued growth of Sawako's character as a normal well adjusted person. As much annoyance as certain characteristics of her personality caused me at times by the end you see a girl who changed quite a bit from the shy and gloomy person at the start of the first season. Even Kazehaya is changed, though it is not as noticeable with his outgoing personality as a shell to cover up his own insecurities.
The rest of the cast remains pretty much unchanged with one notable exception; Kurumi. Her role in this season is greatly diminished but all of her appearances are quite impactful. Each one displays an element of her character, from jealousy and vindictiveness to vulnerability and honesty. Over the course of the series she manages to both stand in Sawako's way and to help her get around her. Though you could say they are technically not "friends", this kind of tough love probably changed Sawako in more ways than any of her other friends managed to. I think that everyone can relate to Kurumi's feelings and her unrequited love. It's hard to not feel a little sorry for her, but while she's still not over Kazehaya by the end its clear she is going to be ok. Unlike most rejected romance characters, it’s hard to imagine Kurumi pining for Kazehaya for the rest of her life.
Artistically there is really no change from this season to the past one. It remains the most beautiful shoujo romance probably ever made. If there is any fault to be had it is with the overuse of Sawako's chibi form. While I myself happen to love chibi style animation, I felt they were used inappropriately at times. Particularly in some of the more impactful scenes which ended up taking away from them. The music and voice acting remains top notch, MAY's "Kimi ni Todoke" ED song I think is the best one of the entire series. Mamiko Noto's performance is also quite memorable. I really believe this is a defining role for her, almost as if the character had been created specifically for her. I cant imagine any other seiyuu voicing Sawako.
Overall the 2nd Season of Kimi ni Todoke is an excellent conclusion to the series. Though even with its excellent ending it never feels like it equals the quality of the first one. Combined with the frustratingly slow pace and an implausible string of misunderstandings, makes the experience as a whole uneven. Despite these warts if you loved the first season your still going to like and perhaps love this as well.
Before you skip over this because of the low score, do me the courtesy of reading through the review, first.
I came into the second season immediately after watching the first. It might be a good idea to read my review of the first season, to give you some context.
Even if you don't, the short story is that I really, really liked the first season. I was this close to giving it a 9, which for me is an amazing grade.
The point is, I came into the second season with very, very high hopes and expectations.
They were not met.
In fact, they were crushed.
Let me get some good points out of the way. The animation is still very good, with some very powerful moments here and there.
The music, surprisingly, fit in a bit better and actually left an impression at times rather than being nonexistent like in the first season. The closing song sounded better this time, too.
Now, on to the plot:
Disappointing first few episodes. In fact, the first 7 episodes were a total disaster. Cheap drama created by characters thinking but not actually saying what would fix an otherwise simple situation.
Total reboot of the relationship, invalidating the last several episodes of the first season and cheapening the plot overall for pointless drama.
A lot of the things that I hate about drama anime surface on the second season, while they were absent the first. Namely, it's the retarded misunderstandings. The sort of situations that arise only because a character took something someone said completely the wrong way, or didn't say something simple yet vital. These sort of things are easy, cheap drama generators and would never happen in real life because in real life people are not that stupid.
Similarly, Sawako seems to have taken the same steep dive the show itself has. There is no sign of the backbone that she had in the first season. She's turned into the depressed, passive and utterly stupid classic anime chick who believes whoever's mouth is moving at the time. What the hell? Sawako in season1 spoke her mind and, even though she was afraid, always tried her best for what she wanted to achieve and wasn't afraid to contradict other people. What happened to that? For f-'s sake, even Kurumi admitted that she didn't expect Sawako to be such a mindless sheep.
Similarly, Kazehaya seems to have realized he's starring in an anime and started doing all the retarded shit anime characters sometimes do, even though he'd made it a point to contradict those expectations in season 1. Things like being led around by the nose by everyone who speaks to him, having no personal conviction, and not respecting other people's right to a decision, like he demanded in season 1 for himself. The latter episodes kind of fix this, but the damage is done by then.
I mean, what the actual f-? Did they seriously make more than one episode's worth of drama based on the misunderstanding that both think the other meant a different definition of 'like'? How can that elicit any emotion other than bafflement from the viewer? How are we supposed to empathize with the characters when their only problems consist of having exactly 0 communication skills?
When the answer 'Does your anime's conflict get solved if the characters say a single reasonable sentence to each other?' is 'Yes' then you're doing something wrong, goddammit.
I wanted to drop it on the first 4 episodes. I really wanted to drop it on episode 5. I should have dropped it on episode 6. I kept going because I'm the kind of guy who can't look away from a train wreck, and because after watching the first season I at least wanted to see how the second one concluded.
The episodes after 6-7 seem to merely be trying to reel back in the shit parade. They're not bad. In fact, they're fine. However, that doesn't erase the fact that none of this should have happened. Much as I enjoyed the episodes from 8 onwards, the fact remains. The last few episodes are spent resolving situations that arose out of pure and unadulterated stupidity that are definitely not the kind of thing I was expecting coming into this.
The last episode is appropriately heartwarming, I'll give the series that. However, imagine the last two episodes being, in fact, the FIRST two, and then the rest of the season being the two of them exploring their new relationship. There was no need for the pointless and outright silly drama of the first 7 episodes.
The fact that the last few episodes were good kind of softened me up by the time I finished it, but it doesn't change the fact that more than half of the season was garbage. I want to rate it high because of the last two episodes, and I want to rate it very, very low because of the first few.
I guess I didn't do myself any favors by having high expectations.
I really enjoyed the first season of this show, but I was surprised when Kuronuma and Kazehaya didn't get together in the last episode, since we had already reached the conclusion of "they both like each other" quite a few episodes prior.
I thought that the second season they would be dating early on and that the episodes would be about their relationship together. When I realized that it was going to be twelve episodes of them doing nothing, it was pretty frustrating.
In the first season, I liked all of the characters (especially the protagonist Kuronuma Sawako) because I found them all funny and enjoyable. By
the fourth episode of the second season, Kuronuma became obnoxious. There was no plot development at all in this season, and it seemed like every episode was exactly the same, with the characters restating their feelings of, "I like him/her but what if it ruins our friendship!"
There was no need to drag this out so long. If this was all that was happening, they should have just gotten together at the end of the first season and had no second season.
Overall, even though I liked the ending and I was happy to see them get together, the frustration of seeing nothing happen for twelve episodes straight was a waste of time and I think this season was a waste.
Sorry for giving it a 10. I know it's probably because I am a sucker for a rom-com genre but hear me out. Rarely does an anime give me the urge to have an all-nighter once I started watching one. Kimi ni Todoke did not make me sleep at all. I have watched the 2nd season, specifically episodes 9 - 12 a couple of time for it to sink in. It was a joy to watch Kazehaya and Kuronuma finally get together in the end. The plot may be slow but it was definitely worth
the wait. Although I feel like there should be more, I am contented on how the story went and ended. I love the characters especially Kazehaya because despite of being the person who can have the woman he wanted, he pursued someone who he thought is unreachable. I just love the plot so much.
Give it a try folks! It's worth the wait, I swear!
An anime dog is a protagonist's best friend. Anime dogs play different kinds of roles in different anime series. Not only are they loyal to their masters, they also fetch the hearts of anime fans alike! Come find the pick of the litter in this collection of adorable anime pooches!