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Thursday, August 29, 2013

Hikonin Sentai Akibaranger Season 2 Review

So it finally came true, a second season of Akibaranger. To give a little history, Akibaranger was first hinted at being another Sentai series when Go-busters was airing. People were excited to hear about two Sentai series at the same time. Then came the first images and it was announced to be a parody series, the fan base was pretty confused and wasn't completely positive on the suit designs. Soon the series started and when it ended, people loved it. It was loved so much a second season came in the next year. So does season two continue the greatness of season one or does it miss the mark?
Now here is something that is different for a continuation of a series, this is kinda a first for a Toku show, but Akibaranger had some major changes. In the first episode, we get a flashback episode of the previous events as things are switched around. First thing is that Mitsuki was scouted by the Pentagon and not Nobuo, the scene even plays out the same just with different character positions. Also the main villain was switched as Delu Knight become the big bad and not the doctor. Also the realm of reality hasn't been broken this time and they didn't discover who the true villain of the series was. So everything ends this time with the heroes defeating Delu Knight with the help of the official heroes they got powers from before. Personally I'm not a fan of this method since I always like to see what is going to happen next. I will say this though, season two really did bring a great twist regarding the changes of events. So throughout, the ret-con was actually used well which is very surprising since a lot of ret-cons always gets so many "boos" from the fans.
No Mitsuki for season two TT_TT
So what is the story of Akibaranger now? Well it starts out a couple of months after the previous events. Mitsuki is gone because of the Pentagon and Yumeria vanished for some reason. We do find out though at the end of episode one that something isn't right. Somehow Akibaranger has become an official Sentai series! There is some bad news to this though, Dairanger doesn't even exist anymore! Nobuo decides to see what exactly is going on and the only course of action is the delusion world. He meets Ryuu Ranger, but he isn't the same anymore. He has been changed to China Red of Chinaman the rumored name for Dairanger. We find out it's actually a villain Otaku attacking the Sentai in the delusion world as he has Malshina help him out with his plans. This new villain is General Tsuu and as I said before he's an Otaku like the heroes, but he loves the villains of Super Sentai. He even makes his own monsters based on each series and sends them into the delusion world. This causes havoc in the real world as the monsters are making changes to the real world as seen with Dairanger. So now our heroes have to save their beloved Sentai series from harm, but wait, what about the other two? Well Yumeria does come back as we learn that she got married and for Akiba Blue a new female warrior takes the spot. Her name is Luna and she is hyper active and wants to become an idol. She really has no interest in Sentai, but she sees this as a possible use for her to become a better idol. So with the three unofficial heroes back they will painfully use their powers to save the day!
Pros- The beginning of season two was very good, excluding the first episode. Episode two and three really shown the new premise of season two in many great ways. First is how they will save the official Sentai is by helping them remember who they really are. Dairanger was first and holy crap it was explosive. We had the Dairanger opening theme played out by our heroes, had Red pretend to be Jin and lose to Ryuu Ranger like Jin did in episode twenty-seven, and Yellow cosplayed as Lin to save Kibaranger. It also really gave us a great impression on Tsuu who is an amazing villain. Not only does he make monsters based on series he even made a monster based on a famous stunt actor. He even made an evil Sentai warrior, how perfect is that? Also Tsuu was really funny, he's an Otaku and he gets equally happy about things like the other Otakus do. Then his bickering with Malshina was great as she knew little about Sentai and here she is being guided by a big fan. Malshina does great as well, and this time she can transform. The idea of her being a bigger super villain was well done and it got even better in the climax of the season. The best part though is that season two does play out like season one as the fourth wall breaking does return and a good amount of the humor is still there and this season got to poke fun at more than Sentai and Otakus as we got some jokes for famous movie directors and other Toku shows.
Can't forget about Super Akiba Red!
Cons- Now even though the beginning was well done, sadly the series doesn't hold up for too long with this premise. Episode five is a great example of this as the team is going to save Zyuranger who has become the Powerful Rangers. So we had a Power Ranger parody along with the Sentai parody. I was hoping to see a lot of really good jokes for this premise, but sadly it was wasted potential. I even felt this for some of the other episodes, like the robot girl, the evil sentai, and even the finale. Now the series still hit at some great points, but that was mostly thanks to Tsuu. The heroes this time felt a little under developed this time which is sad since last time they actually did branch off in season one. Also Luna I didn't really care for until episode eleven. She was just a boring character to me, she was just being Akiba Blue to help her in her idol career. Even when she had the chance to have a really good developed moment, they missed it in episode five, but at least it came in episode eleven. Then the finale.... well episode twelve throws a lot of curve balls. Really for a finale, too many new things were brought up and it just got in the way of a really good build up from episode eleven.
Overall- Even though there were somethings I am not completely happy with, the most important thing is that I was laughing most of the time. That is the most important part of a parody series is that the comedy was well done. Which it was and I can tell the cast had a lot of fun doing a second season. So even with some okay episodes and a disappointing finale there is still a lot of fun to have with the series as the new villain, Tsuu was perfectly portrayed and wasn't just a comedic character and some nice additions of weapons, mechs, and forms still leaves season two to stand out. With that I would give Hikonin Sentai Akibaranger Season Two a B+
Now let's hope we get a third season!

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