Review #59- Food Wars! The Second Plate

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Greetings everyone! Sorry for the delay in the review, everyone has been really busy with college and classes starting up again. Nonetheless, we are back to review the second season of Food Wars, known as Food Wars! The Second Plate. Before we get cooking, beware of minor spoilers, as always.

Now without further ado, let us begin the review!

Summary: After the qualifying test with curry dishes, eight contestants have entered the quarterfinal of Autumn Elections: Sōma, Megumi, Takumi, Hisako, Alice, Kurokiba, Hayama, and Mimasaka. Their next challenge: bento. -Anime News Network

Plot: 6/10

The second season is a rougher place than the first season was. The jump into the season is very abrupt, with very little actual introduction or slight backstory to get the viewer up to speed. While this is okay as a sequel, it can come as a surprise. The main issue with the plot of the second season is that majority focuses on the Autumn Elections. The arc happens much slower than events in the previous season, to the point where it drags a bit. Additionally, the episodes, while humorous and still colorful, become very repetitive do to the nature of the Elections being a competition. Overall, this made it a bit harder to get through than the first season.

Characters: 7/10

Instead of focusing and developing the main character, who himself was not yet a “perfect character”, the second season instead explored predominantly new and old characters to a much greater depth. While the character developments of the other characters was very well done, it sometimes felt rushed or even repetitive due to the sheer size of the cast. It was also frustrating to see Souma fall by the wayside a little bit, with any development to his character being reserved for the bottom quarter of the season. However, they did fix Souma’s overpowered-ness that was inherent in season one, as well as fleshed out his goals.

Animation: 10/10

The animation is just as colorful and well done as before, and the fanservice level was cut back signifigantly, which any fan of Food Wars greatly appreciates.

Soundtrack: 9/10

The soundtrack was just as good as the first seasons, though the opening and closing for season two do not really hold a flame to those of season one.

Themes: 9/10

The themes of the first season stick around to the second season, but are much more prevalent. The learning from loss is much better shown this season, as each character reflects on his or her losses during the competition. Souma, while he mostly fails to show this in season one, does a much better job of actually losing and trying to learn from it. Friendship continues to be important themes, and how it ties into a person’s life, even in the heat of competition. The theme of creativity is another huge theme, especially by the end of the season. The exploration of a signature dish as an important thing for a chef really highlights this, and shows the importance of creativity and individualism that comes with that in a practical sense.

Final Score: 8.2/10

Final Grade: B

B-Ro’s Take

Food Wars Second Plate was really good. It took everything I liked about the first season and kept it going. I know that it may have seemed repetitive, but it is an anime about cooking. Yes it just did what the first season did except it was mostly one event, but when you look at the first season it was mostly a couple of big events with some smaller plots thrown in there. The second season was only half the length of the first season, so I feel it was justified. The second season also expanded on characters we did not get to see much of in the first season. It also showed how long of a way Soma has to go before he can beat his dad. While in the first season everything was fairly easy to Soma and the new season also has Soma learning a lot more about cooking. It is still limited in this season by the cooking, but that does not bother me anymore. It adds more to the charm of the show. It is also a lot less sexualized than the first season. Honestly I think the show got quite a bit better this season. Out of 10 I would give this anime a 9. If you have seen the first season then this is a must watch, if not you really need to watch the first season. – B-Ro

LowKev’s Take

Despite my huge love and appreciation for the first season of Food Wars, it took me quite a while to finally get around to watching the second season. I honestly feared that the second season simply wouldn’t be as good as the first. Now that I’ve finally jumped into Ni No Sara, what did I think of it? Let’s go into the negatives. First off, I didn’t like how the Fall Elections took up most of the season. I was kind of hoping to see more of Soma and the gang in classes, and maybe see more of a progression through their time at the Academy. Perhaps this is due to my pessimistic attitude. Since there might not be a season 3, I wish that season 2 would have covered more time. I also wasn’t the biggest fan of Subaru, who I don’t recall really being in the first season. And… that’s pretty much it honestly… I ended up having a great time with this season. While I wish the focus wasn’t on the Fall Elections as much, they ended up being a joy to watch. That winning Food Wars combination of over the top humor, characters you can’t help but root, and a surprising amount of serious tension was definitely there (though there was much more of a serious undertone here). The characters also retained their charm, and it was cool to see them continue developing. And, of course, the food looked wonderful, and was expertly described in metaphor like last season. All in all, season 2 ended up working out pretty well. It almost felt like they’re hoping for a third season (or just a classic “read the manga” ending), and I’m certainly hoping for it as well (the third season, not the ‘read the manga’ end).

Final Comments: Food Wars! The Second Plate improves upon the previous season in many ways, such as deeper exploration of themes and characters. Yet, in doing so it loses some of what made the series what it is, most notably in the plot.

What was your opinion of Food Wars! The Second Plate? Be sure to comment below and let us know! Our next anime review will be Space Dandy, so look forward to that!

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