OP2: 「その声が地図になる」 (Sono Koe ga Chizu ni Naru) by Hayami Saori
“The Red that Spins Fate”
A Lovely, Relaxing Fantasy World:
A return to Akagami no Shirayukihime is like coming home after a long, tiring trip. The world is lovely, the tone relaxing, and the characters ever likeable. It feels so good to be back! In the Best of Anime 2015 post I named Akagami no Shirayukihime the ‘Best Fantasy’ of the year, and it became clear why after diving back into this episode. There are plenty of war-filled fantasies out there, most of them based of a particular point in history; yet this is a fantasy like no other because of how peaceful it is. While there is conflict, there is no call for war. Instead, we get to know the ins-and-outs of this world and the characters that inhabit it, to the point where I wouldn’t mind living there myself. Sure, there wouldn’t be any computers or wi-fi to watch my favourite anime, but the Kingdom of Clarines may just make up for that.
It’s lovely to see everyone back again. Shirayuki is as cute and charming as ever, and I love seeing her in her element, working on her herbs and in the archives. It’s that perfect balance of fantasy and slice of life that makes this castle seem like such a wonderful place to live. Not only that, but the Second Prince and her boyfriend(?), Zen, is as good as princes come. It was cute seeing him blush when Shirayuki was brought up, as well as him holding her hand and just wanting to see her face. Who wouldn’t love this face?
Obi and Ryuu also got a fair amount of screentime here, which I appreciate. Obi become one of the most likeable characters in the first cour, so it’s good to have him back, but the sweet little Ryuu hasn’t been given much to do. I don’t expect him to go out on any big adventures, because that’s just not part of his character, but I was smiling throughout his scenes with Obi. I can’t recall if they’ve had many moments together before now, but after this episode they seemed to have formed a brotherly bond. I wanna see more of that!
The Beginnings of New Drama:
But the slice of life relaxation can only last for so long. We’ve got old faces popping up in the OP and in the episode itself, as well as a new foe who wants to capture Shirayuki for himself. The details aren’t clear just yet, but the drama is building, and it’s all made more difficult by the fact that Shirayuki has been sent back to her homeland for a week. It’ll be a shame if our main couple is seperated for too long, but I suspect something will happen and they’ll be re-united in a romantic fashion. Still, the fear of abduction and the stepping into the castle of a suspicious man is setting us up for plenty of things that could potentially go wrong.
Overview – First Impressions:
This one of my favourite anime of 2015, and I’m glad to see it return for a second cour. It speaks for itself and never fails to impress. I just love all of these characters, and can’t wait to see more of their world. I have no idea where things are going to go, but my expectations are high – I would be content just seeing everyone hanging out in the palace for another season, embracing their puppy love and picking herbs together. But I suspect there will be bumps in the road to keep us on the edge of our seat, and I cannot wait for the journey.
Full-length images: 38.
ED3: 「ページ～君と綴る物語～」 (Page ~Kimi to Tsuzuru Monogatari~) by eyelis