Nanbaka Season 2
If you haven’t read my review of the first season of Nanbaka you can do so here. Welcome back for season 2 of Nanbaka the prison based gag anime which follows the exploits of 4 prisoners from the world’s most heavily guarded prison, all of which are experts in the act of escaping. So as a quick recap last season saw Jyugo (number 15) discover a snippet about is past and his black shackles but the mystery still eluded us.
Season 2 began gag-packed as expected but then we got down to the serious stuff and eventually a solid plot. However, it didn’t take us the way I expected. The plot moves the focus onto a hidden underground prison and the jailbreak of block 5’s old head guard Enki. Enki was imprisoned himself when he turned violent and murdered a prisoner but thanks to the help of traitors Enki is released and the prisoners from block 13 find themselves caught up in the crossfire of his escape plot.
In comparison to the first season, this one had the feeling like it was set inside a prison. The setting is the underground prisons of building 5 which made for a more dark and serious tone which helped the plot but there was still a few gags hidden away to remind you it is a gag anime. We get to see more of fellow prisoners from other blocks who just made cameos in the first season whilst getting well padded out during this season. Alongside more information on other prisoners, we also get more backstory to Jyugo’s cell mates, with season one being so focused on Jyugo it was good to see a bit more of the other characters. Another difference to last season is the animation department has cut back on the sparkle effect, which isn’t such a bad thing. The characters are still as flamboyant as ever with hair that looks like it’s been in a vat at the rainbow drops factory but a bit disappointing that the head warden didn’t play a bigger part, her crush on Hajime was a highlight it was a shame not to see that progress a bit more. There was a great juxtaposition this season as guards were to become prisoners and the prisoners allowed to roam free, but as we know, despite being branded some of the world’s worst and most dangerous criminals they still go above and beyond to save their correctional superiors.
The more surprising thing about season 2, apart from the serious tone to it, was the ending. It actually left on a wide open cliffhanger. I was waiting for a conclusion or big battle at the end only to have to wait till season 3 to find out. So we can take a rest for a bit as Nanbaka season 3 is penciled in for January 2018 but it’s still on Crunchyroll if you need to catch up before then.