The Triad vanquished for the moment, Sakai Yuji and Shana go back to living from day to day, waiting for the next Tomogara to come. Yuji’s training proceeds, and unexpected results of the past encounter make that training far more serious, with far greater potential. However, nothing stays peaceful for a Flame Haze, and the same goes for the mistes of the Raiji Maigo. There will continue to be battles, continue to be strife, continue to be conflict. Yuji will continue to gain strength and learn about his new companions, and Shana will continue to rediscover the heart she once tried to throw away. And in time, of course, the Triad must be faced again. Because a being that lives for centuries does not stop pursuing it’s goal so easily. It will only truly end when they are dead-or he is.
Kugimiya Rie as Shana
Hino Satoshi as Sakai Yuuji
Kawasumi Ayako as Yoshida Kazumi
Nabatame Hitomi as Margery Doe
Ebara Masashi as Alastor
Iwata Mitsuo as Marchosias(marco)
Itou Shizuka as Wilhelmina Carmel
Kondou Takayuki as Tanaka Eita
Nojima Kenji as Sato Keisaku
Fantasy, Action, Romance
Shakugan no Shana II aired from October 04, 2007 till March 27, 2008
Shakugan no Shana II has twenty-four episodes, and a third is very likely, though as yet unannounced.
Sequels are finicky things. We tend to have high expectations, but that just makes it more likely to disappoint. I enjoyed Shakugan no Shana, and was more than willing to see things taken at their pace. Unfortunately, the sequel is not nearly as good. Rehashed emotional runs that worked the first time but feel repetitive twice, lack of consistency, and general lack of satisfaction, compared to it’s predecessor, force me to give this anime a low ranking despite what I would like. If the third makes good enough use of the ground laid, I may change it, but for now, Shakugan no Shana II is a two point five.
I’ll assume you’ve either watched the first or read the review, and describe the characters according to their advancement and development in the sequel. Shana, who we all enjoyed watching come to terms with herself and confess before, gets cruelly cheated. Yuuji didn’t hear her, it turns out, and she and Yoshida end up largely re-enacting the same emotional lines of conflict that they did in the final third or so of Shakugan I. What held up fine in the spotlight once doesn’t necessarily have another twenty-four episodes of wear in it: in this case, it was largely repetitive, not to mention frustrating, and sometimes even boring. The one who should have been the focus was Yuuji, who despite it all seems unaware of the battle lines drawn about him, but instead he also plays largely the same role in the girls drama: being clueless . For himself, Yuuji’s biggest role is powering up, as he becomes more and more important in each battle. This should have been more entertaining than it was, but again, it got repetitive. We already know how good his senses and his tactics are, we expect him to excel there. His spell casting, however, is new, and as an established gifted person, what we get isn’t quite what we thought we would. He does go through a few character troubles, especially as Shana and Yoshida’s competition finally begins to break through his bubble, but frankly, those are even worse than the girls. Margery Doe also gets more focused treatment, with somewhat better results, but not that much better. Her two cohorts, as well as Ogata-chan, take a stronger role as well, and do better than all the others, as Tanaka at last faces the fact that he truly is not cut out for this world, and Sato reveals a deep running determination to remain in it, and affect it, somehow. Ogata-chan is a delight to get to know better, with a bouncy charm that, it’s true, I’ve seen before, but to me at least it never gets old. Her relationship with Tanaka is sweetly clumsy. I think that’s everything.
Plot, handling, flow, all that stuff…I really wish I could say otherwise, but it stunk. The structure that should have been fragmented in the first but somehow worked, did not come over whole; what magic ingredient was forgotten I cannot say, but it felt very inconsistent, like a broken vcr or lagging video where things speed up and slow down at random. Actual material, in concept, was fine by and large, but it just didn’t get delivered as well as the first. More accurately, unlike the first, which managed to deliver well, the sequel does not. Arcs and character stretches seem interspersed at random, and the lengths of each and where, if at all, they intermesh, all feel mad-dash and off balance. Again, I hate to say it, but as a viewer and a fan of the first, I was very disappointed.
The thing about sequels is, we’re twice as pleased when they work and twice as mad when they don’t. As a fan, I am definitely twice as mad that Shakugan no Shana II doesn’t measure up to number one. The one bright side is, while it may not have satisfied very well, all lot of ground was laid. A whole series of ground laying doesn’t make for fun watching-and would explain the feel of the anime-however, if there is a third, and the third does make good enough use of it, I might well forgive them for it. If it does work that way, I will edit this review accordingly, so if the third does air, check it when it finishes. For now, however, even giving it a two point five instead of a two is a concession. Let’s pray for a better finale.
Final Rating: 2.5/5
This review is brought to you by Z.N. Singer
Info such as cast and airtime are courtesy of ANN’s encyclopedia listing. All else is and always will be the origination of the author.
One Response to “Shakugan no Shana II”
Leave a Reply
You must be logged in to post a comment.