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« Shinryaku!? Ika Musume – 11

Shinryaku!? Ika Musume – 12 (END)

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「訓練しなイカ!?」 (Kunren Shinai ka!?)
“Won’t You Practice!?”

Even if it was to simply humor Ika, I’m surprised everyone went along with her “invasion practice”. She even destroyed Lemon’s phone — right next to Chizuru no less. That usually warrants a little bit of her murderous aura if not her stare down that will have Ika groveling at her feet. They actually had me thinking this was all a dream at first, since Ika even got the customers involved. I’m glad it wasn’t though, because whenever she gets ahead of herself and thinks she’s on top of the world, someone will always bring her squid butt back down to earth. To that end, “Night of the Living Lemon” was pretty good, so I kind of wish they ran with it a bit longer by not letting Ika run away.

 

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「祭りじゃなイカ!?」 (Matsuri Janai ka!?)
“Isn’t That a Festival!?”

Just like the first season, Ika Musume ends with a sentimental twist where the octopus hat girl Tanabe Kozue (Kanda Akemi) saves the day. I really wasn’t expecting it at first, because the preview last time listed a third skit title, “No Really, Isn’t That a Festival!?”, and Ika and Eiko’s falling-out was running overtime and not allowing for one. Whether intentional or not, waiting for a third skit that never came made the scene at the end a pleasant surprise. The build-up was really well done too. I especially like the part where Ika freed all the goldfish that she caught, as it echoed Eiko’s scornful words, telling her to return to the sea. That was a pretty mean way to lash out, so it was nice to see Eiko make up for it by jumping into the pond without a second thought. The best part of it was probably the swing of emotions, going from a jaded Ika to a tearful Ika all in one episode, which was finale-worthy in my eyes.

* Ika named the main character after herself, making it even more obvious that she overwrote Eiko’s save file.
* Full-length images: 02, 07, 14.

 

Epilogue

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ED: 「君を知ること」 (Kimi wo Shiru Koto) by 金元寿子 (Kanemoto Hisako)
Watch the ED!: Streaming ▼

Final Impressions:

With Ika Musume and WORKING’s original seasons airing back in spring 2010 and now both their sequels airing this past season, it feels only natural to compare the two. At the start of the season, I was much more excited about Ika Musume, but as the weeks went on, something was lacking in the skits. Whether or not this is attributed to the original manga material or the change of director I don’t know, but all I can say is that it didn’t quite have the same “charm” as the original season. The jokes felt kind of flat and recycled, and I never found anything overly hilarious.

WORKING on the other hand took the same type of jokes from its first season to another level, providing me with the best laughs of the season. It was strange since I was expecting the reverse to be true, leading me to believe that the new characters WORKING introduced gave it a bit of an edge. That’s not the only thing of course, as WORKING’s delivery is much more diverse with its deadpan humor and comedic pauses — techniques that Ika Musume doesn’t really utilize. That’s not to say this sequel should’ve mimicked WORKING’s though. If anything, it probably should’ve played to its strengths better by switching up to the sentimental side more often and having a skit with Black Mini Ika Musume (from season one’s Blu-ray extras).

In the end, we got more of the same from our favorite squid girl, but as with any sequel, the hardest thing is probably living up to the original and then trying to exceed it. As such, it kind of pains me to say that the second season of Ika Musume didn’t do that for me. It did have its moments though, so if a third season is ever announced, I’ll be watching.

December 28, 2011 at 2:06 am
21 comments »
  • December 28, 2011 at 2:19 amgandalf8

    Have to agree with your assessment on this sequel too, Divine. The jokes weren’t as funny as the first season, but I don’t really think the source material is to blame as I almost always laugh at each of the new chapters. I hope that if Diomedia ever makes a 3rd season, they get their groove back and not just doing it to milk more money. Nevertheless, it still had it’s moments, particularly for me the skit where Ika, Sanae, Eiko and Kiyomi played house with that little girl.

  • December 28, 2011 at 2:38 amZaku Fan

    First skit was funny. They could go with a 3 skit length zombie movie style episode and i think it would be grand. Second skit is ok but more emotional in the latter half. Eiko mumbling about the ridiculousness of Ika drowning even though she’s a squid links back to season 1 as did Tako girl. Eiko holding out the umbrella and Ika getting lost is like a mother and child scene.

    The season was less funny because it focused on Ika being with the Lemon bunch. The episode that is the funniest skit this season for me is the kids exercise. If they do a third season, it might be more comedic to focus on Ika’s attempts to interact with the outside world in daily matters like season 1′s umbrella episode or show things in Ika vision (where Eiko is a mecha)

  • December 28, 2011 at 3:12 amTaiakun

    Was hoping for a mini-Ika Musume skit to end the series on :(

  • December 28, 2011 at 3:37 ammac65

    I agree that Working and Ika Musume are good for comparison with each other, and both were good this year.

    But I think while there was some minor character development, neither series could take it to the “next level” -
    a complaint I have about U.S. cartoons in general. Their characters are pigeon-holed. A perfect example
    was the recent episode where Chizuru and Ika bond – then it’s ruined at the end. When Chizuru opened her
    eyes that gave so much credibility to the skit – drew you into believing that another phase of their relationship
    was about to start. Then boom! (BTW, it’s only time Chizuru opened her eyes in the series, I believe).

    In the 1st season, Ika’s indifference to people was superficial as when the opportunity to do real injury
    presented itself, she always did the right thing. It gave it that charm. The umbrella episode was very
    sentimental, for example.

    This season lacked that depth – although it was still good and funny, I felt that piece was missing.

    I’d watch a 3rd season, though…

  • December 28, 2011 at 5:19 amSirMuffin

    Does anyone know who that red hat blonde girl is at the end? She popped in last season for the final episod as well… Will we ever know?

    • December 28, 2011 at 8:41 amSoiyeruda

      She’s apparently named but sense seeing her, I’ve always called her Tako Musume.

    • December 28, 2011 at 4:20 pmMatroid

      That girl calls herself Tako in the manga, means octopus in Japanese. I call her the Octopus Girl

  • December 28, 2011 at 5:29 amVelvetVenom

    Third season is coming out next year I believe.

  • December 28, 2011 at 5:33 amLGrey

    I kept guessing that this 2nd season will somehow have Kuro Mini Ika skit since she is in the OP. Wrong guess :(

    Well, another bluray bonus episode?

  • December 28, 2011 at 8:42 amWhee

    Yeah… this season wasn’t as fun since lyk ep 1 :(
    At least ika was much cuter- which wasn’t really necessary.

  • December 28, 2011 at 8:46 amSurvival

    While it wasn’t as good as the first season, i loved to see Ika Musume again.

  • December 28, 2011 at 11:24 amSeishun Otoko

    Robot Eiko and Tako musume are great but I’ll be lying if I say I wasn’t disappointed that mini Ika didn’t pay us a visit before the season ends :(

  • December 28, 2011 at 1:57 pmskylaris

    I like this season overall but only a bit less than season 1. I think it’s just that the first season used the best jokes/chapters from the manga and the characters were new.

    Needless to say, some of the moments were still there like Ika beating up the kids from the morning exercise, Sanae as a SP, Ika + meat etc.

  • December 28, 2011 at 2:53 pmDa5id

    Does Jellyfish Girl get a spin-off/prequel?

  • December 28, 2011 at 6:03 pmShinjiro

    I share the same thought about this season…First, this season’s OP just didn’t do it for me like the original OP. Even though the jokes seemed bland or flat most of the time, I still enjoyed watching my little Ika and friends.
    The only thing I would add as a personal note is how much I grew to like Takeru and Chizuru this time around. Hopefully, we will have a better third season (much like I’d cross my fingers for Working/Wagnaria S3). :)

  • December 28, 2011 at 8:37 pmMaRx

    Funny, because I felt the same way but backwards: a disappointing season start followed by some of the best episodes in the entire series (the playing house, bag/scheduler and robo-Ika skits were my personal favorites) and a very satisfying finale.

    I think the new director just had some trouble getting it right at first, plus some of the manga chapters they chose, while good, weren’t exactly the best of the best. Everything turned out okay in the end though, so I’ll be patiently waiting for a third season.

  • December 28, 2011 at 10:43 pmYanDaMan263

    Season 2 may not have been as funny, but it certainly had way more cute and charming moments concerning Ika. Such as, straw hat, winter clothe, Ika-In-A-Bag….

  • December 29, 2011 at 6:57 amiron2000

    The season is pretty good to me (perhaps its because I don’t remember much about S1 already, lol).

    The one that left the deepest impression was the one about English.
    I probably remember that one for a long time.

  • December 29, 2011 at 11:15 pmJing Yi

    Ika S2 pretty much maintained the status quo from S1. Without any new method of delivering the jokes, things do get a bit stale.

    Working S2 had the advantage of diverse eccentric characters whose personalities allows for a lot of flexibility in how they want to do the jokes.

  • January 1, 2012 at 6:39 amAsakura

    True. A complaint I have about season 2 is that they dragged on some of the chapters. They were kind of funny alone, but when they tried to extend it, it just lost its touch, making me wonder when it was going to end.

  • January 1, 2012 at 8:54 pmstarss

    The second season did not live up to the greatness of the first, but I still love my Ika-chan, and would love to see her in a third season!