Written by Bananaowns
Images courtesy of Kyoto Animation
Second season reviews are kind of awkward to write. Generally, the pros of the first season remain mostly the same and the cons are usually worked on. As a result, a second season can feel very similar to the first, which is not necessarily a bad thing. With that said, it’s time to check out the second season of Sound Euphonium. I’m Bananaowns and this is an Otaku Youth anime review.
Story and Characters
The second season features the same likeable high school band as they compete to win a spot in the national competition. Everything that was great about the first season returns in some sort here. The dynamic between Kumiko and Reina is just as great as the first season with the yuri-shippers having a field day as always. I actually am tired of this ship though, due to the fandom’s tendency to cast hatred on poor Shuichi for even attempting to talk to Kumiko. That aside, the relationship between the main characters is as solid as ever. I also enjoyed the exploration into backgrounds of characters that were prominently featured in the first season. The motivations of Taki-sensei are revealed in this season in a surprisingly emotional moment.
Much like the first season, the drama from this one little band manages to create some compelling story arcs. The first arc involving a band member that quit last year is relatively weak though in comparison to the main plot threads of the season. The biggest change is Kumiko’s direct involvement in the drama now. Last season, she just happened to be in place as issues were resolved, but now she is actually the target of the drama. Between the story arcs involving Kumiko’s sister and Asuka, Kumiko is actually impacted by all this drama. Of course she still maintains her very blunt personality which is a plus, but her character manages to become more genuine as the season progresses.
I really don’t have much to say because this second season is just more of the same. Given my love of the first season, that is not detrimental in any way whatsoever. Chances are if you enjoyed the story of the first season, then this one will be highly enjoyable as well.
Animation and Sound
The presentation and sound design for this series maintains its excellent quality. The animation is flat out perfect. The backgrounds are highly detailed and the moving animation of the characters is unreal. It is a treat to watch the animation anytime the band plays. The standout sequence of this season is the full band performance. This scene was absolute perfection and was one of the best sequences of the entire year. Of course, the series also maintains its astounding use of facial expression, showcasing the best cute girl animation of the season yet again.
The sound design is great for this series as well. Like with the last season, a show about a concert band needs to have great sound design. The characters play a great selection of music, especially during that band scene that I mentioned above. The instruments still sound great and the sound design in the band scenes impresses yet again. The voice acting also maintains its charm. Again, the highlight is the performance of Kumiko’s voice actress. There is just something so inherently real about the way Kumiko talks and the actress captures this sarcastic tone perfectly. Given that Kumiko is actually the subject of some emotional scenes now, the voice actress needed to explore a new side of the character. Thankfully, she managed to pull of these emotional scenes to perfection.
The second season of Sound Euphonium is the perfect follow up. The story brings the band drama, but the new focus on Kumiko directly makes it a lot stronger. The animation and sound design is still amazing as well. I give season 2 of Sound Euphonium my Bananaowns’ stamp of approval. I’ll be back next week for another review and thanks for checking this one out.