Friday, 28 August 2009

The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya - Season 2 - Episode 12 (aka Episode 22)

As this series take on the Sigh of Haruhi Suzumiya arc continues, so does Haruhi's movie shoot, as what appears to be her harmless enthusiasm takes a decidedly more dangerous turn for all involved as we hit our third episode for this chunk of the story.

After feeling a little disappointed by the last instalment, this episode does at least feel a little sharper - The humour is slightly more prevalent and on the ball, and the actual contents in terms of story progression has more purpose to it as well; at least, as much as we can hope for from a story arc that is, in essence, simply fleshing out something that was covered with more brevity by the original run of this series.

Of course, the major incident around which this episode is focused is the infamous "Mikuru beam", which rapidly progresses from a figment of Haruhi's bizarre imagination into a particularly dangerous affliction for Asahina which causes Nagato to leap into action before any lasting damage is done. That aside, what we get here is just the usual really - Haruhi's exuberance, Kyon's daydreaming and wisecracks and so on.

That reference to this episode as "just the usual" does once again bring us to the crux of the matter however - That this story arc simply doesn't need this many episodes. While there are some decent enough moments in this instalment, I still stand by my initial feeling that this story arc was more or less fine as it was in the original series, and that fleshing things out to this extent actually spoils it somewhat. Sure, I can't argue that some points needed clarifying for anyone who hasn't read the novels (which is why I'd rate this episode more highly than the last as it does just that), but it still feels less snappy and fast-moving than it should be to my mind. Again, maybe I'm just hungry for some more genuinely, 100% new Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya.


Anonymous said...

It's going on just like in the last story arc. In Endless Eight they repeated one episode endlessly and everyone wanted it to be over. In the current arc they're fleshing the story out to a really boring extent and I suppose they will carry on with this until the last episode and once again everyone just wants it to be over. The last episode will not deal with Kyon, Haruhi and the others, but instead they will show someone going on a killing spree in the KyoAni headquarters in anime style. At least this will give us a good laugh at the end of the series (thereby the're making fun of themselves and in the end someone will call the whole show a masterpiece).

Anonymous said...

I wouldn't call this arc really boring. It's not as sharp as the first season, but I found it entertaining as everyone was in character and there were amusing details from start to finish (like the nanomachine injection).

I felt the movie episode was terribly weak as the first episode shown in the first season: it was meaningless noise without context. So this arc has let me enjoy it more.

That said, agree they're spreading a story too thin. This should have two episodes at most.

yukino said...

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Rick said...

I have mixed feelings about the Sighs arc. On one hand, it's replicating the novels very accurately. On the other hand, I think the adaptation was too... simple.

They missed to add more spice to it. For example, when Kyon was thinking of Asahina-san, we could have a picture of adult Asahina-san; Or when Haruhi gave the team what roles they'd interpret, we could have a flashback of Kyon telling Haruhi about the brigade members' real identities (which WAS written in the novels).

Also missing are the self-references: Instead of Haruhi humming some popular songs, we could see her humming the opening or ending sequences (just as Kyon's sister was humming Hare Hare Yukai in the first season).

I have the impression that this Haruhi animation team is missing the "touch" that the old team had.

And yes, I think this arc is becoming too long.

Having said that, I support the previous poster's words: This arc makes us understand what really happened in the first episode.

Before reading Sighs, I found the first episode somewhat annoying, but after reading it, I found it fascinating, yelling: "Hey! This is the part where the Mikuru beam went off!" and remember the Sighs novel while watching the bad movie.

I suppose that watching Sighs is having the same effect on people who haven't read the novels yet. And that is a good thing.

AidanAK47 said...

I agree with everything that has been said so far.

Basically I say that this whole problem was caused by endless eight. You see after those eight annoying repetitions people are now thirsty for some story development. So it was not really a smart idea to play the slowest arc from the books straight after endless eight. The funny thing is that with the sigh arc they are being too faithful. Basically adding in every detail from the book.(Except for one very cool thing about Kyon telling Haruhi about the SOS brigades true Identity's. I don't know why they left that out.)

Well Hanner I can tell you that these three episodes covered 105(Rough number but its somewhere around that) pages of the sigh book and there is 69 pages left. You can expect about two more episodes of the sigh arc.