The Fall 2013 anime season has now come to a close with the conclusion of White Album 2, Valvrave S2, and Monogatari Second Season (Carrying over from Summer). All of the two cour shows have taken a break as well and will resume in the new year along with the Winter 2014 anime season. This Fall season ended off on a good note, in my opinion, for most of the series. I’ll wrap up the Fall 2013 season posts this week by discussing my thoughts on White Album 2 episode 13, Valvrave S2 episode 12, and Monogatari Series: Second Season episode 26.
White Album 2 – This series was quite the roller coaster of emotions. Here we have Setsuna, Kazusa, and Haruki who made a major impact on each others’ lives but yet they can’t truly be happy despite how much they care about each other. There is no possible scenario where the three of them can truly be happy at their current state where one of the girls will be hurt while the other two will carry the feeling of guilt if they decide to pursue their romance. We can see how much this guilt is eating away at Haruki where he wants Setsuna to be upset with him. If Setsuna were to vent her frustration to him, he could feel more at ease since he knows he hurt her and wants some kind of punishment to help him cope with his guilt. Instead, Setsuna refuses to blame him since she’s still upset over her guilt of trying to force herself between the two of them despite knowing how they felt.
The airport scene was pretty difficult to watch, just seeing Setsuna on the sidelines as she broke down. She managed to remain calm and composed for the entire trip there but just seeing the person she loved with the person she saw as her best friend pained her. This was exactly what Kazusa had to endure before except she always hid her true emotions from everyone else. With this scene, everything is finally out in the open and the series ends with the characters having damaged relationships but having to move on with their lives. Kazusa doesn’t just abruptly cancel her plans to live with her mother due to Haruki’s confession, she instead uses the opportunity to finally open up and not have any regrets regarding her feelings for him as she moves on to a new chapter in her life. I think this was the best ending for White Album 2 since the entire series had been building up tension by having the characters bottle up their feelings which built up to the point where their relationships were too damaged to remain as a close group of friends. They managed to get everything out in the open and they are all now able to move on in their lives as they venture off into adulthood. I’m really hoping for a full adaptation to the rest of the visual novel so we can get complete closure on these characters.
You can watch White Album 2 on Crunchyroll (Free users have to wait an extra week to watch the newest episodes, may not be available in all regions)
Valvrave S2 – Here ends Haruto’s tale and all the suffering he had to endure. I can’t help but feel that there is something missing from this finale though, they tried to wrap up as best they could but it resulted in the series feeling a bit incomplete. While Haruto’s death has been foreshadowed for the longest time now, I feel like there should have been more of an emphasis on the effects of his death on Shouko, Saki, and the other characters. It would have been nice to see L-Elf’s life post Haruto’s death to see how it would have changed his ways perhaps. It was also a bit weird seeing how easily the Magius were slaughtered when they’re supposed to be immortal creatures as well. We also still don’t know the origins of the Prince in the flash forwards except that he probably isn’t related to Haruto due to his death. Overall though, Valvrave was a fun series that shouldn’t be taken too seriously. It seems that a lot of people were generally disappointed with all the plot holes but I personally found the series to be enjoyable and entertaining.
You can watch Valvrave S2 on Crunchyroll (Free users have to wait an extra week to watch the newest episodes, may not be available in all regions)
Monogatari S2 – Nadeko’s secret in her closet is finally revealed. This entire arc really made me reflect on Nadeko as a character, from the past 2 seasons of Monogatari, I still never really knew much about her despite having her own arcs. The only things I could recall was that she was in love with Koyomi, and she had a really innocent personality. The contents of the closet was finally our first look into the real Nadeko, not the God or the fake cutesy one that we’ve seen. She really enjoys drawing manga but since it didn’t fit in with other people’s ideals or what their image of her was, she hid it away and kept it a secret. In the end, there was a really important message regarding Nadeko and Kaiki’s confrontation, that your life does not revolve around one thing. Things come and go, but one specific characteristic or thing does not make up who you are as a person.
The ending also caught me off guard as well with Kaiki being assaulted and possible death. His character really grew on me from this past arc where we learn that he’s not as simple and money driven as he may have appeared earlier. Just listening to the way his voice seemed to be breaking as he plead to Nadeko conveyed how much he actually cares for others. While he personally does not like to get close to others since they can leave a hole in his heart when they’re gone, that hasn’t stopped him from still caring and helping others. With this season coming to a close, we’re still left with the question of who exactly is Ougi and what is going on between her and Gaen. Hopefully we don’t have to wait too long for Hanamonogatari to figure out how Kanbaru is connected to everything.
You can watch Monogatari Series: Second Season on Daisuki (May not be available in all regions)
That brings a close to the Fall 2013 anime season. I’ll be continuing to post my thoughts on the Winter 2014 anime season on my new blog site at Ganbare Anime. I may still post on this blog occasionally but I’ll probably be putting more focus on the new website so please follow it if you followed this blog!
You can check out my previous Thoughts and Impressions on Fall 2013: