So will Haruhi takeover K-ON! now?
KyoAni’s biggest assets this year are definitely through firstly K-ON!, and now with Haruhi S2 finally airing this early this morning. Will Haruhi’s return kill off K-ON!’s current claim to the fandom? Most likely yes, but hey… it’s the Haruhi we’ve waited three years for.
So where to begin? This episode is Bamboo Rhapsody which is technically episode 08 chronologically and for those of you who have yet to read the light novels, it basically explains the events from three years ago that they had been continuously hinting at over the first season. Tanabata, July 7th, is a special “festival” day celebrated in Japan to do with sending a message to the gods Orihime and Hikoboshi, who will grant your wish. (It’s actually quite a nice story, if you’d care to look it up. Haruhi would tell you to!) Anyway, Haruhi comes in to the SOS-dan room having stolen some bamboo for the brigade to write up their wishes to send. Mikuru asks for Kyon to stay behind and they end up timetravelling back to the Tanabata three years ago.
There, adult Mikuru appears once more and tells Kyon what he needs to do: Go help the Haruhi from three years ago write the mysterious sign that appeared on the school grounds; which is actually a message to Orihime and Hikoboshi. This is really the key point where Haruhi decides to go to North High, simply because of Kyon (under the alias of John Smith in order to not create a paradox) after their talk about Tanabata and aliens, time travellers, ESPers and sliders. Mind you, I still have no idea what is meant by “sliders”. Haruhi then leaves, saying that her mission is complete.
Kyon goes to wake up Mikuru-chan so that they can return back to their original time but Mikuru finds that she’s lost her TPDD (some sort of timetravel device – doesn’t beat the TARDIS, you can’t lose that however hard you try). Kyon comes up with a solution and they go to find Nagato for help. That Nagato then syncs with the future Yuki’s memories and she helps the two go back to the original time by sealing them off in a room to sleep. In essence, she stopped time for that room for three years.
Haruhi is god. And Haruhi’s return is more than enough to make me happy. But, I felt that this was a reasonably average episode. It wasn’t bad, it just wasn’t amazing. Maybe it’s because I already knew the plot? I don’t know; but I’m certainly staying away from the light novels until at least the season finishes.
Something felt different about the episode. I’m not sure why, but Kyon’s narration certainly felt a bit different from the old sarcastic personality that he presented three years ago. Maybe it’s just this episode, but it certainly was a little weird. The constant “Asahina-san is kawaii” comments felt like something the old Kyon would never had said. Haruhi-chibi also reminded me a little of Konata; her higher pitched voice and that slight demanding tone. But all and all, the air of Haruhi was clear in her words.
After going through a few of the subs that had been released, I could only find three in total: Mazui, DB_L-E and CoalGG. I ended up watching the CoalGuys-gg sub and although I don’t usually comment on the subs, I have to say it didn’t feel like the quality of translation that CG usually give. Don’t get me wrong, I like CoalGuys’ work especially on ToraDora and the more recent K-ON! episodes, but the “casual” language used in the translations wasn’t that good compared to a.f.k’s from three years back. I was also expecting HD quality (I think they may have had a budget cut) but meh, I’m just happy that there’s Haruhi so I just looked past all that. :3
The only other thing I was disappointed about was when it aired. 4AM in the morning for me is not a good time for anime. ;_; And I have school on Fridays. Guess you can’t have everything, at least there’s Haruhi and K-ON! in a double dose to look forward to coming home after school.
This episode also came with a new ED! Strangely enough there was actually no OP for this episode but the new ED that replaces Hare Hare Yukai is called Tomare and is catchy, but I don’t think it beats the dancing. The photo montage is quite nice. Oh and watch out for strokes. ;D
So, three years on and after Kadokawa’s ridiculous “trolling“, let Haruhi S2 continue! As there are 28 episodes, with 14 reruns, it looks as if the schedule that will be followed is as follows, with new content bolded:
01. The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya 1
02. The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya 2
03. The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya 3
04. The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya 4
05. The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya 5
06. The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya 6
07. The Boredom of Haruhi Suzumiya
08. Bamboo Leaf Rhapsody (NEW)
09. Mysterique Sign
10. Remote Island Syndrome Part1
11. Remote Island Syndrome Part2
12. Endless Eight (NEW)
13. The Sigh of Haruhi Suzumiya 1 (NEW)
14. The Sigh of Haruhi Suzumiya 2 (NEW)
15. The Sigh of Haruhi Suzumiya 3 (NEW)
16. The Adventures of Asahina Mikuru Episode 00
17. Live A Live
18. The Day of Sagittarius
19. Someday in the rain
20. The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya 1 (NEW)
21. The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya 2 (NEW)
22. The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya 3 (NEW)
23. The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya 4 (NEW)
24. Charmed at First Sight Lover (NEW)
25. Snow Mountain Syndrome Part1 (NEW)
26. Snow Mountain Syndrome Part2 (NEW)
27. Where Did the Cat Go? (NEW)
28. Disappearance Epilogue (NEW)
Although I’d have preferred all the new episodes in a row… this is certainly better than nothing! But honestly, if KyoAni were extremely clever and out to make more money, they should have waited until K-ON! had finished before releasing S2. This will most certainly drag the attention from MioK-ON!, no?