Posted on 29 June 2013 with categories: Anime Reviews, Chihayafuru



Let’s put this into a bit of perspective: generally to warrant a second season a series needs to sell well in one way or the other. Chihayafuru’s DVD sales were abysmal: it sold like, 500 copies in its first week or so. Despite being a really excellent and well-made series, people just didn’t want to bite, and I had given up on any hope for a continuation. Imagine my surprise when the manga suddenly gets really popular and a second season has been highlighted!

And guess what? The production-values still are completely top-notch. There only are a few episodes with some bad and jerky animations. Otherwise: everything is perfectly crisp, the animation manages to make every single karuta match stand out and sparkle. There still is a ton of eye candy here. Any idea how hard it is to keep up this consistency for like fifty episodes?!

I mean, Chihayafuru’s sequel is just amazing. It continues the trend that the first season set, and just continues on with it, doing so many things right. Every single episode, it doesn’t just push one character forward; it tries to do this with as many characters as possible. No episode is wasted like this, and every episode brings something new to the table. It really is amazing how the creators continue to be able to do this. They introduce quite a few new characters that have a great impact on the storylines, and nearly all of them have some sort of gimmick, yet they feel real, and very relatable. The acting was fantastic in the first season, and that didn’t let up in the second, and the second now has so much build-up and development behind it!

It’s really clear that the creators here have a very good understanding of the game of Karuta: they really manage to flesh out the game even more in this season, and show many different sides of it. A downside is that if you just look at the matches objectively, then this series is a bit predictable in the big picture, but in the small picture, it’s everything but: the creators try their hardest to make the individual karuta-matches as exciting as possible.

This season does have a bit of a downside that it’s the middle arc, so there is no beginning, nor an ending, and because of that the juiciest developments are reserved for the other parts (if they’ll ever get there), and as a result this series does have less subject material, so it can move a bit slow at times. But still this show had some of the best characters of the year.
One-Sentence Review: If this series can’t get you fired up on Karuta, then nothing will; fantastic characterization.
Suggestions:
Hikaru no Go
Nodame Cantabile
Shion no Ou

4 Responses

  1. TheUltimateReaper says:

    This anime is just (excuse my language here) fucking great!

    Its Josei, its a sporty kind of anime, and it’s about Karuta… by all means it should be boring, however, Chihayafuru is enchanting and really gets you to appreciate something you might not have ever even heard of otherwise.

    No complaints here, though I do hate those fillers.

  2. dango says:

    This is amazing, it starts out pretty simple, but its gets layer and layers of characterization added as it progresses and end in amazing final. It really is one of those shows that pulls you in by its passion XD.

  3. Joe says:

    the bad side about chihayafuru was it focused to much about karuta i felt bad about taichi’s unrequited love for chihaya. she was to dense i just felt sorry for him never getting apreciated once in a while.this made me bored of the series in the middle of it

  4. Big Jim says:

    500 copies in its first week? Where are you getting these figures from? False information!

    Chihayafuru’s remunerative issues were down to commerce from behind-the-scenes, not because of the public’s reluctance to ‘bite’. Amongst fans it is fast becoming one of the cherished and highly regarded series of recent years.

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  • AidanAK47
    (Tuesday, Jul 29. 2014 01:52 PM)
    And then there are some who you can beat, torture and present the most flawless logic in existance and they will still be ignorant morons.
  • AidanAK47
    (Tuesday, Jul 29. 2014 01:51 PM)
    As a wise old donkey said, “Life will go on as it has always gone on—that is, badly.”
    K-Off, your effort is comendable but the fact is that reason doesn’t work on everyone. There are some people you can talk down and some you need to break a leg or two to get your point across.
  • Wicked
    (Tuesday, Jul 29. 2014 09:12 AM)
    Watched an episode of Marvel Disk war. Wow. I don’t know how well it’s doing in Japan, but you could not have been more transparent about selling toys than this show
  • K-Off
    (Tuesday, Jul 29. 2014 09:07 AM)
    @ninja Nah, After it happened, my friends and some other people in the crowd pushed us apart. He yelled something while I inspected my nose, and I just went to the nearest restaurant to get a kleenex.
  • ninjarealist
    (Tuesday, Jul 29. 2014 09:05 AM)
    @K-Off Gonna press charges?
  • K-Off
    (Tuesday, Jul 29. 2014 09:02 AM)
    @ninja Bled for a few minutes, then plugged it up and lifted my face towards the ceiling in my car for a bit. It’s fine, didn’t break anything. Thanks though.
  • ninjarealist
    (Tuesday, Jul 29. 2014 08:59 AM)
    @K-Off I only tell the story cause ultimately I made out better than you did with your sign. lol. How is your nose feeling dude?
  • ninjarealist
    (Tuesday, Jul 29. 2014 08:58 AM)
    One of them continued to rant about how “soldiers have died in that uniform” but I kept insisting that it was just a meaningless piece of clothing to me. I had a lock in my pocket and was ready to use it, but they never made good on their threats and eventually some of the soldiers’ civilian friends pulled them away.
  • K-Off
    (Tuesday, Jul 29. 2014 08:58 AM)
    @ninja As long as you didn’t wear it to Subway and Six Flags for cheap discounts, I don’t see a problem with that.
  • ninjarealist
    (Tuesday, Jul 29. 2014 08:56 AM)
    True story: I use to wear a full army BDU to parties, not for any other reason because I thought it looked cool. I had purchased it because it was great, strong, clothing for my forestry job. People would ask me if I was a soldier and I would tell them “Hell no” and start talking smack about the government. One time two actual soldiers cornered me and made vague threats about what would happen if I didn’t take off the jacket.

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