Monday, January 30, 2012

Anime Review: Squid Girl 2

And FINALLY, the last show from the Fall 2011 season that ended back in December, wish I could say that I saved the best for last but actually the order I've done these reviews, which is mostly based simply on the order they ended, it's gone from favorite to least. That's a little sad since I really enjoyed the first season of Squid Girl (which aired in Fall 2010) and had even been thinking of buying it since Media Blasters had licensed it for R1. I don't believe they've licensed this season, especially since it sounds like they're about to keel over and die, but I don't really want to purchase this season anyway.

Squid Girl 2 (Shinryaku!? Ika Musume)
Summary: While Squid Girl still has grand plans to conquer the Earth for the moment she's still stuck waiting tables at the seaside restaurant Lemon, dealing with some of the town's even wierder residents and getting into plenty of trouble herself. 

The Good: Squid Girl continues to use the same format that the first series did, 12 episodes split into 3 shorts per episode, and that format still worked really well. Actually, since very few of the skits rely on continuity a new viewer could theoretically start with the second season and pick up as easily as someone who had already seen the first season which is also rather nice. This series also introduces a few more side characters and gives some of the older side characters more screentime so if you enjoyed more of the character based gags of the first season you'll like this one.  

The Bad: Comedy is hard to do and a good sequel is hard to do as well. Put them together and you have to come up with a really impressive product for the show not to feel like a let-down and for me Squid Girl 2 felt like a let-down. What I enjoyed so much in the first season was how the skits and gags felt unique, the main character is a squid after all so almost everything had to do with the ocean or local, on land customs that Squid Girl didn't know about which the series played up. Here however the gags are much more generic and sometimes rely more on "hey, this character is whacky!" for the laughs instead of having really good gags.

The Audio: Not much has changed from the first season except for a change in opening and ending songs. Both of them were okay and but I liked the opening from the first season better than this new one, this one just felt a bit more generic.

The Visuals: The visuals look unchanged from the first season, colorful and simple. It doesn't look like the show got a budget boost for the second season, of if they did it it didn't go into the animation. Nothing looked especially terrible or horribly off but the show just never looked great either, it's one show where I can't understand buying in BR since there's nothing to improve on in the first place.

In the end I was disappointed by this sequel, I just didn't laugh at this season as much as I did with the previous season and don't foresee watching it again. Oh well though, there are plenty more fish in the sea to try out instead!

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