Original Run: January 7, 2021 - March 25, 2021 Number of Episodes: 12 Genre: Drama, Slice of Life Based on the Series Created By: Paru Itagaki
***Warning, the following may contain spoilers for Beastars 2nd Season. Reader discretion is advised.***
Following his battle with the Shishigumi, the all lion crime syndicate, Legoshi (voiced by Chikahiro Kobayashi) tries to return to his quiet, unassuming life. However, for a giant grey wolf, that isn’t the easiest thing to do.
With the culprit of last year’s devouring still on the loss, the tension between herbivores and carnivores is at an all-time high. Legoshi, despite his preditor instincts, hopes to bridge the gap; he decides he will be the one to find the perpetrator.
However, if there is anything more dangerous than a hungry carnivore, it’s a hungry carnivore that no longer has any self-control.
To say I was looking forward to Beastars 2nd Season (Beastars 2) would be a gross understatement. For context, Anime Hajime awarded this show’s predecessor, Beastars 1, high marks during the 2nd Annual Anime Hajime Highlights:
- #1 Character of 2019 – Legoshi
- #2 Anime of 2019
Season one set a standard alright. Low and behold, Beastars 2 did not disappoint. This installment was every bit as good as the original. And since you are reading a review of this series’ second chapter, you don’t need me telling you; this show is one of a kind.
Although this cast consists of talking anthropomorphic animals with undeniable human traits, these characters were not humans who just so happen to look like wolves, deer, and rabbits. Beastars goes all-in in this respect. Everyone might use phones, go shopping, and drive cars (some even use guns), but they are still creatures that can succumb to their instincts.
This angle was not a gimmick; it did not get used for jokes. This was a fundamental dilemma that caused severe difficulties throughout this series – Beastars 2 especially.
One particularly memorable scene (among many) could not have driven home this point any deeper.
Right in the middle of Legoshi’s drama club, one of the carnivores ripped off the arm of his friend, an herbivore. To ensure no one gets the wrong idea – this experience wasn’t even remotely amusing; it was intense as hell. While it might sound like it was, this wasn’t a malicious act; the carnivore simply used a little too much of their strength. Despite how violent this scene was – and it was pretty damn graphic – it was just an accident.
But seeing the horror, confusion, fear, and (in the case of the carnivores now in the presence of fresh meat) lust in the characters’ eyes, it was insanely unnerving.
That was one of the strengths of Beastars. There was always a sense that something could happen without any warning. Thus, there was never a moment without some level of tension, even during this show’s more lighthearted instances. This series’ volatility gives actual horror anime a run for their money.
What Beastars’ characters went through felt real; it felt believable. Granted, I want to think all my readers are NOT walking around with a primal desire to devour their friends and neighbors. Still, this series did stress and anxiety phenomenally.
It wasn’t that it was easy to connect with these characters; it was simply natural.
After watching Beastars 2, Legoshi’s number one character ranking was no mistake. He remains one of the most likable individuals I’ve come across in any anime ever. If you are someone who disagrees, I’m not kidding; I want to hear your reasons in the comments.
Despite being a gargantuan wolf, Legoshi was gentle and caring. I would say he couldn’t hurt a fly, but that’s not true. When he needed to, Legoshi could hold his own in a fight. And yet, even when he was in a death match with someone, he would never bring himself to be rude.
In this season’s climax, in the middle of a no-holds-bar carnivore throwdown, the clock struck midnight, signaling the start of the new year. Legoshi, battered and bruised as he was, put on his warmest smile and sincerely wished his opponent a Happy New Year.
He wasn’t being naïve, condescending, or full of himself. That was simply the kind of guy Legoshi was.
Unfortunately, I wouldn’t expect to see Legoshi’s name pop up again during the 2021 Highlights. It is Anime Hajime policy to disqualify returning characters. As a result, even though they have every right to be ranked, this rule will cause characters like Louis, Haru, and Juno (voiced respectively by Yuuki Ono, Sayaka Senbongi, and Atsumi Tanezaki) to be excluded as well.
However, there is one character from Season 2 who might be fighting for a spot. Yes, this person was in season one. Still, they weren’t at all prominent enough for them to be considered a returning “primary” cast member.
Sadly, I can’t say who this character was because it would be a massive spoiler. After all, this was the person who committed the original devouring; you know, the event that kick-started this entire series.
What I can say is, Season 2 did this person so fantastical well. No, this show didn’t justify why they ate a classmate. But this series did explain why things led to where they did. And if you want to talk about tension, holy s@#$.
No matter what this season did, it had my attention.
Even if there were side plots that probably should be described as meandering or unnecessary, I refuse to acknowledge them as such. Any show that can produce the level of consistent engagement Beastars 2 did is doing something right.
And now things are a bit scary.
We had to wait just over two years for this continuation to drop, but, at least, season two got announced at the end of season one. There was no such proclamation at the end of Beastars 2.
I thought I would be used to it. I really did think I could look past it. I couldn’t
Having a scene inside a strip club where the animal dancers had human proportion breasts (size DD at least) was something I’d never thought I come across. I also never imagined my self writing the following sentence:
If you wanted to know what a f@#$able, big-boobie gazelle looks like, Beastars 2 has your answer.
Please, that is something you don’t need to respond to in the comments.
I will sing this series’ praises louder than anyone. This show’s story is fascinating; its characters are the definition of likable; hell, the animation this season, while still not great, was better than its predecessor.
There is so much to like about Beastars 2.
However, this was weird. And coming from a person who reviews any anime, no questions asked, that’s saying something.
This series can get away with a lot only because everything else about it is so damn good.
You will be hard-pressed to find another show this unique that also boasts a rock-solid story, great characters, and an impossible-to-put-down atmosphere filled with tension and suspense. And to think, this series has now done all that twice.
Beastars 2nd Season has earned its recommendation.
But these were just my thoughts. What are yours? Have you seen this series? How would you advise Beastars 2nd Season? Leave a comment down below because I would love to hear what you have to say.
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