Sep 18, 2019
lt_wassile (All reviews)
Arguably one of the best Chinese studios out there, G.CMay Animation, decided to develop a season 2 for Mo Dao Zu shi -also known as Grandmaster of Demonic Cultivation-. What they’ve managed to create is an emotional and stunning piece of animation, along the lines set out on the first season.
However, instead of taking the time to unfold the extensive backstory of the characters as they did in the onset of season 1, this time they took the plunge to the action-packed wonderful pace of the end of the 1st season from the very start, making it really enjoyable.

Without changing too much the recipe that lead to the success of season 1, Mo Dao Zu shi presents a character-driven story based on a Chinese cultivation world setting with a fair amount of action scenes, Wei Wuxian comedic paintbrushes, and an amazing work in the artistic department; still, a darker tone is set, mainly due to the darkening/despair effect that both the misfortunate events and the demonic arts have in our protagonist.
Besides, the moral conflict WW brings to the table much more complexity and tragedy making the show much more interesting. So, though we are not facing a really complex story, they way things are told and conducted make it a really nice piece of storytelling.

Moreover, though the cast is pretty much the same, we can observe that on season 2, G.CMay Animation steps up in the characterization of both our main cast and the intricacy of the villains/evil, as on season 1 felt kind of cartoonish, given the usual pillory attitude which Wei Wuxian displayed combined with the childish goals –and attitude- our main villain -Weng Chao- had. They have managed to portray much better their feelings, their ambitions, what they seek in life, generating in the viewer different impressions depending on the characters –and their actions/state of mind/circumstances- displayed on screen. Furthermore, the score was absolutely breathtaking and well used during the course of this season, endowing much more emotion to a lot of shots of this anime.

Speaking about visuals, this show continues to do things incredibly well. Striking use of angles, elegant coloring, and smooth shading gave so much detail that even the slightest feeling was portrayed on screen; even conversations felt much more realistic than on your usual anime thanks to the animators work. That being said, this last statement can also be applied to action sequences, as both are amazing –even the use of CGI was nice-. Last but not least, backgrounds, oh backgrounds, what can I say other than what an amazing display of talent it was (again)?

So, to sum up things, season 2 has hands down taken another step forward in its project of making Mo Dao Zu Shi franchise one of the all-time great productions of the Chinese anime industry.