Posted by psgels on 12 April 2010 with categories: Anime Reviews, Seikai no Monshou



While both Seikai no Monshou and Senki were excellent series, to me it seemed like they still were missing something, and I don’t just mean Monshou’s disappointing finale. I still can’t exactly put my finger to it, but whatever it was: Seikai no Senki II has it. The third Seikai series more than surpasses its predecessors.

It doesn’t just take the best of the two prequels: the dialogue of Monshou and the combat of Senki. It also introduces a complete new layer: diplomacy. A huge part of this season is about the two lead characters, in charge of a planet full of prisoners that’s about to descend into a civil war. The planet’s political system consists out of four parties with all their own issues yet who have to live together somehow. I personally loved watching Jinto trying to save himself in this situation: his words suddenly carry the lives of tens of thousands.

The dialogue of Seikai no Monshou and Senki was already really good, but Senki II’s dialogue turns out even better. The creators put so much meaning in just about every sentence. Every sentence is spot-on, whether it’s about the characters in the series, or the politics. The scenario itself is also full of twists and turns that yet make full sense when put into the story itself.

The series thrusts us really in a world that neither the characters nor the audience knows anything about. It cleverly makes use of the fact that it’s already got 26 episodes of established characters, while at the same time it also delivers powerful new characters who are gripping and full of flaws from the beginning. While the first Seikai no Senki was generally very focused (it was very much a series about war), Senki II instead was about a whole array of stuff: it’s a very varied series in which one episode may be about politics on a small insignificant planet, the next about space battles, on to switch back to some banter between a bunch of army commanders. It covers the full spectrum. Seriously Sunrise: why don’t you make stuff like this anymore?

Storytelling: 10/10 – Perfectly paced, varied, hard-hitting; science-fiction at its finest.
Characters: 9/10 – Terrific dialogue, both the old and new characters rock.
Production-Values: 8/10 – Excellent music. The graphics do what they need to do and nothing more.
Setting: 9/10 – Excellent portrayal of an ongoing war on many different levels.

Suggestions:
Toward the Terra
Hi no Tori – Uchuu-Hen
Gasaraki

12 Responses

  1. Aaeru says:

    This one is another one of those hardly ever mentioned shows that normal Anime fans have no means of discovering unless they get an extremely strong recommendation from someone they respect (such as this blog).

    Somehow while I understand it was the full intention of the author, the rest of the main cast gets left out of the action in this segment. I like it more when both Lafiel and Jinto do their thing – together.

    Also Senki III the heroine gets breast inflation… (sigh)… why

  2. egress63 says:

    It is such a sad thing to see Hiroyuki let go of this work. I eagerly anticipated the release of Sekai no Senki V, and its been six years since the wait has begun.

    All I can say is that I was happy with the end of Sekai no Senki III since it was a very nice logical conclusion to series with Lafiel and Jinto cementing their relationship further.

  3. karry says:

    Figures. With your warped tastes to give higher rank to the worst title of all four.

  4. signorRossi says:

    I found the dialogues in this show rather boring and pointless ( watched it quite some time ago, though), LotGH in comparison has much better dialogue. Of course this is just my opinion. :-)

  5. Camario says:

    Actually, I’m not sure about whether or not I’d rather rank this show higher than any of the other parts of the franchise, considering it’s been a long time, but can sincerely say that I also enjoyed it.

    But once again, I imagine that Sunrise would be willing to make more Crest/Banner of the Stars adaptations if the novelist had continued the novel series, but so far, like egress63 has commented, this seems to remain the main problem.

  6. tzuge says:

    Seikai no Monshou/Senki is a beloved anime series. It might be relatively unknown to newer anime viewers just because of its age.

    Seikai no Monshou is a character introduction tied into a basic adventure story.

    Seikai no Senki I is primarily about the Ahb and Lafiel rather than war. Think about it, relatively little actually happens in the war itself, but we see a lot of Ahb characters in action. It uses the war as a way of providing insights about the Ahb. For example, consider Lafiel’s position in the empire, and how and where they are stationed in the war. Also, Jinto is in a pure support role.

    Seikai no Senki II is focused on Jinto. It’s really a coming of age type story. Has to do with Jinto accepting his role, and gaining the maturity to acknowledge his relationship with Lafiel. It has the ‘trapped in darkness’ and ‘awaking to self’ part at the end.

  7. Troyen says:

    I liked this installment better than all of the others in the series. While III had the potential to surpass it, you could tell the producers had to stuff an entire season’s worth of material into an hour, and as a result you don’t really get to enjoy the plot as much.

    While overall I like the Seikai no Senki franchise, I think Monshou/Senki I had minor stuff that detracted a bit from fully enjoying the story (the ending for the former, and the series pacing for the latter). I feel Senki II got it all right, even though you don’t see Lafiel/Jinto together that much.

  8. Kanao says:

    All of the Seikai series are great but I agree that this is the best one.

  9. AznCoffee says:

    FERK YEARRRRR BANNER OF THE STARS!!

    I totally remember watching this on Anime Unleashes back on TechTV. xDD

    Thought I found the ship battles a bit… inattentive xD;

  10. wakka9ca says:

    This one is my favourite amongst all Seikai series….

    Can’t wait for Senki IV and more Seikai no Dansho adaptations!!!

  11. Michael says:

    Yeah idk. There are parts of II that really bother me a lot more than the other seasons. I don’t want to give many spoilers away, but I feel like the whole problem could’ve been avoided if Jinto wasn’t acting like a moron at times. That said the last few episodes of II ARE the best of the franchise, and they have great emotional impact.

  12. Joojoobees says:

    This franchise is truly a great one. Rather than say one installment is better than the others, I would say that decision is dependent upon the type of show you enjoy most. Crest is a much more personal story, focusing on the principal couple. Banner 1 is the military story, it has a much larger scale, spanning star systems. I appreciate what Tzuge says above, that Banner 1 (Senki 1) is really about the Abh themselves, that makes sense, but it also is structured around the planning and execution of a single (large-scale) military strategy. Banner of 2 is the diplomatic installment; it also features Jinto. Unfortunately I haven’t seen Banner 3.

    So, whereas I don’t know that the different installments stand on their own, I think it is fair to say, depending upon the type of story you like, you will prefer a different installment the most.

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  • Emma
    (Saturday, Apr 25. 2015 03:28 AM)
    @Bam: In any case Richard Kelly shows himself to be both a left wing and very clever filmaker =)
    I loved it =)
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Apr 25. 2015 02:58 AM)
    @Bam:It was creative and twisty and had a bit of everything and I liked that about its plot. But I haven’t decided whether its better than Donnie darko or not. Interesting to see Sarah Michelle Gellar in role that isn’t buffy.
    Haven’t seen Box yet, but should do so.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Apr 25. 2015 02:57 AM)
    @Bam: I just completed watching southland tales in full. Another used on here had mentioned this to me ages ago, but you talking about it got me off the fence to finally get round to it. Though I felt it perhaps excessively long, a bit padded in places, this was a very underrated film with a biting satire, great ideas and a good, very funny at times dark sense of humour.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Apr 25. 2015 02:52 AM)
    @Bam: I think the only thing arslan’s manga had going for it was some alright fight scenes here and there.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Apr 25. 2015 12:13 AM)
    Ep03 of Arslan was weak. The only reason I’m still excited for the next episode is Narsus. Hopefully Arakawa’s portrayal is as cynically delightful as Tanaka’s.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Apr 25. 2015 12:10 AM)
    @Emma: yeah I liked that. Uses the same digital rotoscoping that was used in A Scanner Darkly. I enjoyed reading ASD more than the movie. Philip K. Dick has a literary style that really doesn’t lend itself to the screen. Interestingly enough Southlake Tales is also heavily inspired by Dick’s novels.
  • Emma
    (Friday, Apr 24. 2015 11:35 PM)
    @Bam: I’ve only partially seen it but seems like theres noticeable dark humour there.
    I saw a trippy movie about lucid dreams lately called waking life.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Apr 24. 2015 07:31 PM)
    Love it or hate it, everyone agreed that it’s certainly an interesting watch and a tantalizing and magnetic film that even if you despise it you would still badly want to watch it to the end. Dwayne Johnson, Justin Timberlake, Sarah Michelle Gellar and Sean William Scott are just the tip of the iceberg in this weird list of celebrities who all play a strange and out-of-character role in Southlake Tales. The movie was ambitious if nothing else.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Apr 24. 2015 07:23 PM)
    I just recently watched Southland Tales for the first time: I gotta say I enjoyed it. This was Richard Kelly’s next big project after Donnie Darko. Not considering The Box this is pretty much the only thing he’s done since and it’s extremely polarizing with the audience; although most people hated it. It’s a satirical dystopian apocalypse story and might be one of the weirder films that strangely never became a cult classic.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Apr 24. 2015 07:18 PM)
    @Emma: Vinland is one of those that stresses me every time I hear its name since I badly need to catch up with it. I also watch Vikings, pretty solid show. It premiered on the History Channel of all channels, mostly known now for the entertaining but laughable Ancient Aliens. I think I might’ve seen Angel a while ago, and Holy Motors just sounds so strange; so I might give it a go actually.

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