Note: Review copy supplied by MVM Entertainment
Title: Is It Wrong To Pick Up Girls In A Dungeon? Season Two
Anime Studio: J.C. Staff
Genre: Fantasy / Harem Comedy
It is business as usual in the massive city of Orario, where legions of adventurers gather to explore the monster-infested “Dungeon.” Among them is the easily flustered yet brave Bell Cranel, the sole member of the Hestia Familia. With the help of his demi-human supporter Liliruca Arde and competent blacksmith Welf Crozzo, Bell has earned the title of Little Rookie by becoming Orario’s fastest-growing adventurer thanks to his endeavors within the deeper levels of the Dungeon. Dungeon ni Deai wo Motomeru no wa Machigatteiru Darou ka II continues Bell’s adventures as he tries to bring glory to his goddess and protect those he cares about. However, various familias and gods across the city begin to take notice of his achievements and attempt to add him to their ranks.
The second season of Is It Wrong to Try and Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon?, AKA DanMachi, continues the story of Bell Cranel and Hestia. If you read my review last week, you’ll know that I found the first season to be a surprisingly fun watch. So, I came into this expecting more of the same. To a point, I got exactly that. The characters themselves are just as loveable as they were in the first season. In particular, Bell and Hestia’s chemistry continues to be a delight to watch. I was also happy to see some more screen time given to other characters too. It felt like Lilly had a little more time to shine this time around, and while she did fall into the rivel-for-the-heroes-love role, it was nice to see her sticking around.
Hermes too was an important part of the various arcs, causing trouble without stepping into the realm of being a villain. His presence also helped push forward a shift of focus for the season, moving us away from purely looking at Bell’s growth and instead building up some backstory. We got to see the Gods and Goddesses in conflict, and learned a little about a prophesized hero, for example. This really helped flesh out the world as a whole.
The first arc saw the Hestia Familia challenged to a War Game by the Apollo Familia. This was a lot of fun and built up to a large scale battle that let us see some of the adventurers showing off their skills. This, in turn, led to the Hestia Familia finally growing in numbers and pushed us into an arc based in the local Red Light District. This too saw some nice little chunks of set-up for future arcs, and allowed the Familia to add another to their number, a Reynard named Haruhime. I was also appreciative that Bell’s high-speed rise in skills seemed to slow a little, as well as the brief introduction of a few far higher level characters than we’ve seen before.
The animation was easily on par with the first season, but the audio I felt improved. Whereas the series previously had a competent soundtrack, the background music here felt more standout. A few of the sweeping pieces during battles felt really well placed and enhanced the moments rather than just sitting behind them. Once again, the fan service was not as intrusive as I expected either. The prostitute arc didn’t go out of its way to push things any further than it needed to, which was a big surprise. The beach OVA was perhaps more guilty of fan service for the sake of it, but this wasn’t entirely unexpected at least.
That’s not to say that the series was perfect though. Some characters, such as Apollo, come across as fairly one-dimensional. You see, while the core cast members are given time to put themselves across, some others are only really presented as placeholders for a particular role. Even when this ends up giving us some nice set pieces and pushes the backstory forward, it’s a shame there wasn’t more to them. There was also a bit more focus placed on the harem elements this time around. While that won’t be an issue for everyone, I preferred the way this was run in the first season.
For me, that was the only major down-point though. DanMachi Season Two offered fun, excitement, and plenty of loveable characters. It may not have been quite as cohesive as the first season from a story standpoint, but it was still just as easy a watch. I give this a consistent 4 out of 5.