Here we are two years later and we have been given the second season of Saenei Heroine no Sodatekata, complete with a flat music symbol in its name! If you want to know about the story for the first season, you can check out my review of it here. Once you have done that (because I know you are just itching to do so) jump right in with me as we take a look at what happened in season two!
Tomoya and his Blessing Software are on the cusp of completing their first game, but things aren’t exactly going the way Tomoya had hoped. There’s a bit of turmoil when they fall behind schedule due to Eriri not knowing how to draw the added ending route that Tomoya created. This leads to Tomoya taking responsibility into his own hands completely neglecting Megumi’s request to include her in his actions. Add in the fact that once they are completed with the project, both Eriri and Utaha are going to be moving on to other things, such as other commissions or in Utaha’s case, continuing her light novels and graduating from high school. In the end, they do end up resolving a lot of the turmoil and finish the game. Tomoya wants a second chance and even writes a script for a new project in hopes to bring them all back together.
The second season was pretty character driven rather than story driven. At first, they opened the season with a flashback to tell a bit of history between Eriri and Utaha. I didn’t think that this was a good way to start off the second season because it detracted from what made the show so great to begin with… and that was them putting together their visual novel game. Another thing that was lost in this season was the rivalry between Tomoya and Iori. There was some great tension and drama in the first season between the two doujin circles, but now that is all but missing in the second season. In fact, we only got to Iroi only a handful of times… one of those is when he admits defeat after playing their finished game.
While the season did have its high points (especially when they shifted focus back to making the game), it didn’t really feel as unique or as special than the first season.
I have my in-depth character thoughts in the first season’s review so I’ll just briefly touch on how they developed here in the second season.
Honestly, Tomoya didn’t really develop all that much until the end of the second season. He’s still brash and reckless with his words, but it’s not until he realized that he hurt Megumi by acting on his own during the time Eriri fell behind on her deadlines that he started to feel a sense of compassion to those who were working around him. He tried to act like himself, but when he confronted Megumi and realized that she loved Blessing Software, probably even more than he did, she broke down and let his true emotions out. Even still, Megumi still had her reservations about him which speaks volumes to Tomoya as a character. If there is a season three, I wonder if we will see a different Tomoya thanks to him finally seeing things in a different light.
The only real change with her is that she realized her feelings for Tomoya. At the end of the season, right as she was about to board a train to start the next chapter of her life, she kissed Tomoya right in front of Eriri. In fact, her act shocked Eriri and Utaha so much, that they missed their train! Utaha still played the same role of the soft-spoken, yet very direct character that was kind when she needed to be and brutal when it was warranted.
Eriri Spencer Sawamura
We already knew that Eriri loved Tomoya and when Utaha kissed him, her reaction sealed her feelings on the spot. She’s still hot-tempered, but realized her own weakness when she couldn’t draw the final story arc the way Tomoya would have liked to have seen it. She made herself sick over it showing the kind of passion she had for the project. That was a side of Eriri that we hadn’t seen before and it was a refreshing moment for her character!
I didn’t really like her character from season one and I still don’t like her in season two. She may have had her redemption moment when she stood up to Tomoya, but she’s been so quiet and in the background, it was really hard to gauge her passion for Tomoya’s game. Maybe that was the intention all along, but I just found her completely annoying from beginning to end.
Art, Animation, and Sound
A-1 Pictures handled the second season of Saenai Heroine no Sodatekata (as well as the first season) and this seemed like their typical standard fare production. The characters maintained their unique looks and they continued to utilize the unique coloration of each character’s eyebrows. In the two year break between seasons, I had forgotten about that unique aspect of the art and was quickly reminded of that as soon as I saw the first episode. Not enough shows will take a risk with something like this and for Saekano, it worked rather well!
Animation and backgrounds were also your typical standard fare as was the OST for the show. Like most slice-of-life shows, the OST was there to help the show along from scene to scene and the OST did its job. I know I state that a lot in my reviews, but it’s the truth. These kind of soundtracks aren’t really all that memorable, but if you need some good background music while you do other things in your day to day life, then I guess it’s worth picking up. Unless you are an absolute die hard fan of the show, I don’t see an OST like this flying off the store shelves anytime soon.
I gave the first season 3 ½ stars because I felt it did an excellent job telling a slice-of-life story with a lot of geek culture mixed in. Season two tried to carry on in the same fashion, but it felt a bit slower with not much more in the way of uniqueness. They did complete the game and they did wrap up the turmoil and pull everyone together to work on a second title, but outside of that… that was it. I felt like they should have extended the first season to the point where the game was completed and focused season two on making the second game. Renew the rivalry with Iori, maybe introduce new threats, and go from there.
The character building moments were pretty nice, but they didn’t feel all encompassing. It seemed like the same exact characters from the first season who had their own little revelations and then went right back to being themselves, rather than seeing a permanent change within them. I think that kind of hurt the series a bit, in my opinion.
All in all, it was nice to see the show return, but I just felt it was a bit underwhelming. After they launched their game, I found myself not really caring much about show. Maybe there will be a season three, but the words “The End” say otherwise. If the show is ending on this moment, then I guess it’s a pretty decent spot to end it on. Everything seems to be wrapped up and life will go on.
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Until next time,
Saenai Heroine no Sodatekata ♭
Versus the first season, Saenai Heroine no Sodatekata ♭ lacked some of the elements that made the show great, causing the second season to fall just slightly above average.