DVD Review: Chihayafuru Part 2 (2011 - 2012)

Posted by Retrokaiser On Friday, October 25, 2013 0 comments

Chihayafuru Part 2 is the second (and final) volume of a show about a teenaged girl named Chihaya who runs a club that's dedicated to playing the card game Karuta.  Karuta is a game where two players put down cards on each side of the field that have quotes from a series of poems written down on them and when a reader (the person whom reads the poems) reads the poem that matches the card the players have to pick up the card before the other one gets a chance to do so themselves.  In this volume Chihaya has finally leveled up to "Rank A" (highest rank you can be) and is competing against the top dogs of the game and is quickly finding out that even though she is up there she still has a lot to learn about the game.  Her team (that is also her Karuta Club) has also grown in terms of skill to the point where they are competing in some of the bigger tournaments and not just that but they are all also getting up there individually as well and all have the potential to go up a few ranks.  Will the team grow to superstardom?  Will Chihaya become the top of the top?  I'm not going to answer those as I don't want to spoil but I can (and will) answer if this volume is good or not after the jump.  (Click "Read More" for the full review).

I was really worried going into this volume as I was afraid that the show was going to crash into a brick wall due to the possibility of having nothing to make it grow after they completed their initial goal of making it to the top.  My fears were put to rest however as not only did the story in this follow-up volume satisfy me but it also expanded the show a whole great deal.  Characters in this volume have grown a whole bunch in terms of character and personality and it's really great.  They also add introduce a bunch of new rival characters in this volume and they were quite good with just as much charm as the main cast, I do hope that they return in future episodes.  Unlike most shows based on card games you will find this one to be less over the top and very down to Earth.  I do like how all the games in this show are won by the person who plays the best as opposed to other card game anime like "Yu-Gi-Oh! (2000 - 2004)" and "Duel Masters (2002 - 2003)" have non-sense twists that help make the main character win every time, that sense of realism help make this show very unpredictable when it comes to the card battles.
Frosty the ninja snowman!
Artwork in this show is very beautiful with coloring I can best describe as walking down the park during a warm Autumn afternoon and if you can picture that well done, if you can't just think of brown colors in the scenery mixed in with some brightly colored skies and sun.  Characters are also really beautiful with designs that somewhat resemble porcelain dolls.  My complaint is some of the characters eyes look lifeless as if they were reanimated corpses and it looks a little creepy.  Japanese dub was quite good with some very cute and serious voices that matched up the characters really well.  I know I was a bit harsh on the soundtrack in the first volume but it has grown on me in this volume although it still sounds similar to music found in huge hit cinema films like "Jurassic Park (1993)" and the "Indiana Jones series (1981 - 2008)" which is weird as this is a drama series but it works very well.

Very thin selection of special features with text-less opening and closing credit sequences and the special features are the exact same as the first volume.  Overall this show was very good with the second volume being way better than the first (and the first volume was really good).  I do recommend getting this volume (and pick up the first if you haven't already) as it will be worth your time and money.  Great drama.

Title: Chihayafuru Part 2
Animation Studio: Madhouse
Genre: Animation/Anime, Drama
Running Time: 325 Minutes (13 Episodes)
Distributor: Siren Visual (http://www.sirenvisual.com.au/)
Rating: PG (Mild sexual references, Coarse language)
Price: $49.95
Recommended: Yes


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