Da Capo 2 anime review

Da Capo 2 anime review
Hatsune-Jima was once well-known for its cherry trees, which would bloom no matter what time of year it was. Two years ago, the island's cherry trees lost this ability and all became ordinary cherry trees that bloom only in the spring. Jun'ichi Asakura is now a graduating senior at Kazami Academy, and is surrounded by many close friends, old and new alike. On a stormy summer day, a mysterious young girl, Aisia, arrives at Jun'ichi's door. She is looking for Sakura's grandmother to study magic, ultimately hoping to bring happiness to everyone. When she discovers that grandmother Yoshino had long since passed away, she joyfully assumes (thanks to his error in judgment) that Jun'ichi is able to teach her. Even though she finally understands that the only magic he's capable of is conjuring Japanese confections, Aisia continues her search for magic on Hatsune-Jima. Amid the chaos of her search, Kazami Academy hires new medical staff.

I watched the first two series of Da Capo a long time ago with the intention of reviewing both seasons, but that didn’t happen. Every time I tried to sit myself down to write about them, my blood began to boil. I decided it was best for my own health to put the two series, both of which in my eyes embodied everything wrong with visual novel conversions at the time, to the back of my mind. I came into this series with minimal expectations (hell, there were times where I thought the very act of watching it was a momentarily lapse in sanity), but I’ve walked away from it now with reasonably positive impressions. Da Capo II may be superficially similar to its predecessors, but where it matters: story, plot-structure, pacing and characters, it couldn’t be more different.

Da Capo II has what no Da Capo incarnation had before it: likable leads. The relationship between the two leads, one that differs significantly from the standard anime romance due to the fact that they start going out right from the first episode, is both interesting and gets rather tense at stages. Both leads were sympathetic, but a certain amount of friction always exists between them and becomes more and more amplified towards the end of the series. This adds a dramatic complexity to their relationship not common in anime romances, particularly ones of this nature. The characters, while likable, unfortunately lack a bit of depth, but in an anime like this, I’m not going to be too picky.

The side characters are a real mixed bag, on the other hand. Koko’s friends’ constant intervention into her and Yoshiyuki’s relationship quickly becomes really annoying. Characters like Suginami and Otome are pointless, while characters like Nanaka take a filler episode’s worth of focus only to leave the stage with their particular subplot totally unresolved. Minatsu is one of the more interesting characters, and her particular subplot gets a significant amount of worthy attention. Her’s is the standard story of a man-made machine finding it difficult to reconcile the fact that she has an artificial humanity with society’s expectations of machines. I’ve never been totally satisfied with how such stories are dealt with in anime, but this attempt gives the issue a lot more respect than Chobits does, for example. A disclaimer on this, though: expect your suspension of disbelief to be challenged by certain plot points in this subplot.

I’m not going to claim that Da Capo II avoids all the mind-numbing staples of the ren’ai genre because it doesn’t. It’s a fairly generic anime, but at the same time it’s one that doesn’t offer any prominent reasons to passionately dislike it, which makes for a stark contrast to its predecessors. I’m willing to say that this will quickly make its way to the back of my mind, but that doesn’t mean that I didn’t enjoy watching it.

Better than review, is a Trailer video of: Da Capo 2. Watch it now:
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