The second season continues to remind us why despite the claims of it being a deconstruction of isekai, it’s still a power fantasy. Subaru is constantly hailed as a normal person thrown in an isekai, yet he is a NEET and a dork that the moment he realizes he is in a different world he doesn’t look for a way home and instead runs after waifus. And most of the girls are all over him; even the extremely young ones. Is that what a normal person is like in the minds of delusional otakus?
And don’t get me started on the double standards of the return by death bullshit. Subaru is hailed as a protagonist who differs from other isekai protagonists by not being overpowered, and yet he has an OP power that nobody can counter. And if pain is a lot worse than death, which is why (supposed) he is not using it actively for resetting the plot every time he messes up, then why is he willingly ending himself? The big fuss everybody was yapping about during the first season was how painful it is every time he dies and therefore he does his best not to die. And here he is abusing that power by ending himself so he will not have to suffer through the negative consequences. It’s the definition of a copout.
And even then, why is he not ending himself every time he messes up? Sometimes he does, sometimes he doesn’t. It’s almost as if he never learns and has no specific mindset so that the author can use him however he likes instead of how he should be acting. Or, in a more sinister way, Subaru forgets to off himself so a lot of gratuitous and otherwise needless goreporn can fill half the episodes. There is a hilarious scene he gets eaten alive by bunnies. I repeat, bunnies! L O L, where did that come from? Oh well, it’s something new and completely changes the plot because time resets when Subaru dies. Something he couldn’t do himself by just killing himself. You didn’t see that coming. By the way, those cannibalistic bunnies are really evil, ain’t they? Because of their evil act Subaru is now punished by going back in time when he is fully healed, his friends are alive, and the world hasn’t frozen to death. Man, such evil bunnies, did you see the harm they caused?
And then it’s all that bullshit about his power not being a panacea to every problem because he cannot control the save point. He cannot reset everything that went wrong, such as being an asshole to Emilia or preventing Rem from getting magically forgotten. If that is true, then why has Emilia already forgiven him by abusing the very ability that is not supposed to be a copout? He defeated that whale monster by resetting his progress until he did it right and impressed her. So much for not being able to rely on that, and having to face the consequences of his actions. You can bet your sweet ass the same thing will happen with Rem. He will just keep failing until he has a perfect playthrough on how to wake her up and return everyone’s memories of her. There is no tension. Nothing is at stake. There is no time pressure.
And holy smokes, what happened to plot progression? The entire season is a nonstop back and forth without even a resolution at the end. The story hasn’t budged an inch forward since all Subaru does is dying and going back to the exact same save point. I know a lot of casuals are going to say it moved a lot forward by constantly feeding you with new information and more revelations, even if the actual plot is not going anywhere. It’s building up the setting! It’s unraveling the mystery! It’s digging into the mindset of its characters! Yeah, all those are done through talking. The dialogues are ridiculously long and tedious, and worse of it all is that they get erased every time Subaru resets time. If talking is all there is to the mystery and the characters, then the show sucks.
By the way, it’s insane how this lack of content makes many pretentious overthinkers to write essays that are longer than the show itself. I found 45 minute long videos about episodes where the only thing that happens is waifus infodumping boring shit. The absence of plot lets the pretentious overthinkers to talk about whatever bullshit comes to mind. Because as Peter Griffith has taught us “A boat is a boat, but a mystery box can be anything”. Lesson of the day. The less plot your show has, the more people will talk about it in order to add the plot that should have been there from the start.
Regarding the suffering, dear lord, it’s tortureporn of the highest caliber. It has lolis begging to be brutally murdered by a neet otaku. It has more lolis who control monsters that butcher to death hundreds of innocent people. It has even more lolis, being gutted alive and their insides splattering all over the place. It has people turning to glass and then mercilessly smashed to pieces. It has people being sadistically stabbed in the eye and allowed to live so they can die by the hemorrhage and pain. It has people getting skewered through with hands when they least expect it by those they trust. It has people with their heads getting smashed to pieces when they are defenseless while trying to help someone else. It has people getting chopped to little pieces by killer bunnies. It has waifus turning to psychopaths who let Subaru sleep on their lap as they laugh hysterically and he is dying after his body got shred to pieces.
Of course all that don’t matter since there are no consequences. No matter how many times someone gets brutally murdered, he will be fine when time resets. There is no perma death and anyone who says there is, is a complete retard. Not to mention how half the times he is not even freaking out every time he goes back in time. After a million times of doing it he doesn’t feel a thing anymore. Anyways, if you want to see torture, suffering and brutal killings, you will get them in spades. Extra spice for all the parts where Subaru doesn’t die immediately, because he gets saved by his friends who don’t know of his power, only to suffer and get brutally murdered anyways half an episode later. They try to make it seem like ‘oh shit, he didn’t die right away, which means the save point will change and everybody will remain dead’. Yeah, it’s trying to fool you into thinking his power is not fixing every problem, which is obviously a lie because time resets as normal and everyone is alive and well. Also can we at least admit we don’t care about any of the characters who constantly die and return to life a few seconds later? People end up remembering only the gruesome ways they die instead of their complex personalities and really meaningful actions, that are not undone in every episode. Such as all the good Subaru’s friends do when they save him. Really helpful and didn’t magically erase from the plot. Let’s face it, most watch Rezero for the suffering porn and the waifus.
Speaking of waifus, we have many additions to Subaru’s harem. More maids for serving the supposed ‘normal MC’ and more witches that infodump at the same time they seduce the supposed ‘normal MC’. By the way, some of them are underage, because Japan. Did I mention the female ghosts? Subaru is so normal even ghosts want to have sex with him. And holy crap does the author treat women as objects or what? Every time he doesn’t know what do with a waifu, he knocks her unconscious so Subaru has to protect them. Because that’s the closest thing he has to an objective. Protecting sleeping beauties that, just like in the fairy tale, they will instantly be all over him the moment they wake up. Which is exactly what happened with the half elf waifu. First thing she does when she wakes up is yelling “Subaru is mine, get away from my master”. Remember when she hated him for treating her like shit? Where did that negative repercussion which can’t be fixed by his otherwise not broken power go to? You can already tell what Rem is going to do as soon as she wakes up. Remember when she butchered him to death in an earlier playthough? Thank goodness his otherwise not broken power didn’t negate that so he could make her fall in love with him when just a few minutes ago she chopped him to little pieces.
By the way, I laugh over many tards of the show who are constantly getting worked up over all the progress Subaru loses every time he dies, as if something goes to waste. Why doesn’t anyone complain about all the edgy shit he’s undoing every time he dies? Like that serial box tiger. He saves Subaru’s life in one episode, while in the previous episode he wanted to kill everyone. Why are they not complaining about that getting lost, hm?
And I’ll be damned, what happened to normal traveling? Subaru is now teleporting out of nowhere in weird places. It’s like the author doesn’t know how to make him go there normally and has to use cheap magic so whatever shit he has in mind can happen in any way he likes. Thank goodness these powers are not broken because they would make the MC not to come off as a normal person.
There is a part where Subaru is in a fictional version of his real life back home and we are supposed to think he, supposed, realizes he is not special and, supposed, becomes a better person. Which is obviously a lie, since this is far from the first time Subaru realizes he is not special. It happens every few episodes, when things don’t go his way and he ends up crying on the lap of a waifu. Saying he just realized it now is a lie, because he constantly does before forgetting it and going back to thinking he is special for another three episodes. Rinse and repeat. Also, the scenes with his parents had no build up. This is the first time we see them and therefore there is little gravity behind what is going on. If they were introduced in the beginning of the story and half of what is going on now was established back then or during a few flashbacks, then there would be an actual reason to care about them and their relation with Subaru. Instead of that, we had dozens of episodes of a protagonist who doesn’t have a backdrop or established motivations that don’t go beyond chasing after waifus. Also, his parents are not real. He didn’t actually return to his world and he isn’t actually interacting with them. It’s all an illusion made by a witch. It’s fake, hot air, doesn’t matter. We are literally watching a show where the power fantasy is real and the real world is fake. That’s messed up.
Also, what the fudge do you think is going to happen next? You honestly think Subaru is going to return to the real world and make friends? No, he hates reality and will do his best to run back to a magical fantasy land that has videogame save slots, and where sleeping beauties and maids and ghost witches love him for being normal and with not with broken powers at all. He will go back to chasing after waifus in this fictional power fantasy for ronery otakus. Which was the case since the very beginning. What value is there in his realization if nothing is going to change? That’s the hypocrisy of Rezero that so many are defending. It’s escapism fantasy that pretends to be a subversion when down to it it’s only fooling around with a done to death premise without actually changing anything. It’s the tenth time Subaru realizes he is not special, his supposed development came out of nowhere through characters that were just established, through magic that works however it suits the plot, and through illusions instead of real life.
This is such a step down from season 1 (which was by no means perfect any way, but I had hope that the following season would improve upon its weaknesses). I honestly don't even want to talk about all the things wrong with this season, but I'll highlight a couple. Best girl? Gone. Exposition? You get the most confusing, pretentious, word salad mega-chunks of exposition...that don't even really explain. The characters? They're all worse this season. ALL of them! i can barely stand Subaru, which brings me to the next issue... Remember in season 1 when Subaru would have a break dwon, and it was really powerful to watch? Remember episode 17 when he finally admitted to himself how pathetic he is, and it was really powerful.? Well, now it happens EVERY SINGLE EPISODE. I started rolling my eyes at Subaru's sudden case of Deku-itis. And no one likes a character that CONSTANTLY whines about being pathetic but does NOTHING about it. This season had so much nothing happen it in, that it almost felt like filler. It was dragged out for twice as long as necessary, and we don't even learn much about the new characters or the new threat or ANYTHING really. I guess on the plus side, we did learn about Subaru's past (finally!) and some stuff about the witches, so that's something. Most everything else was just "foreshadowing" and theory fodder...
(Oh, and *spoiler* is the best character in the entire season, which is a shame because we don't see much of her. She is the sole reason I gave the character score a 4 instead of a 3...)
Here we go again. This series brings up mixed feelings. Re:Zero has a story deep buried under this thick layer of respawn mechanism akin to game The Stanley Parable  and fan service. Speaking of fan service, in this case not much of ecchi kind, but the bloody kind. I don’t mind violence in series, where it makes sense to show it. In Re: Zero most of the time violence is pointless and goes long way to show every form of torture and is not limited to one character. It’s ever-present and constant beating viewer again and again until he rests his torn blood-stained body on lap of his waifu . It isn’t just all the times Subaru was sliced, torn apart limb from limb. It’s also other characters. Remember death of Rem in the first season, that was pointless gore porn. Now you get for change different deaths .
What is even worse it has element, which I whole heartedly hate, typical in some modern shounen series. It’s state of constant emotional outbursts, swinging in rapid sequence from extreme joy/confidence/etc. to extreme depression/despair/etc. Everything happens so rapidly any empathy is practically impossible. In good stories emotional moments have to be built up over the time so one could empathize with the characters. Emotional outbursts of this kind are most repulsive in characters, which are no longer little children, making them look either mentally unstable or childish. In Re: Zero this theme of emotional whiplash goes through and through each cycle. As I said in the previous review at one moment Subaru (the main protagonist) is overconfident, joyful at other moment he breaks down and cries like a little girl rinse and repeat. There wasn’t any change so far and I don’t even presume any in the future.
Story is mystery box, but by the end of the second season I would say the main gist of mystery box is quite clear. Finally, at the end I can pretty safely presume what is the goal. The only mystery is how and why, but I don’t care that much about that. The first season didn’t make much sense, because this has not been shown at all. This should be done in the first season. That ship has sailed and I don’t care about the late reveal. It has potential, but it has been buried with all the other things around it.
Story progression is obscured and hindered by series of dead-end story lines. Content, which normally would be three or four episodes takes whole season of thirteen episodes. The inner mechanics of the resets suffer from inconsistence. In one timeline character is your best friend in other not so different he is your enemy. In one timeline character wants you to do something for him in other he is strongly opposed even to the idea . Even circumstances can be different after time reset it’s completely random like rolling dice. Remember the episode when there was something that wasn’t there before at any previous point is perfect example . It makes the whole ordeal too random. More than progressing story, what those random timelines are about is gore. By the second season that aspect just doesn’t do nothing, but makes me annoyed like a bad joke repeating itself over and over again. It becomes even very predictable once you see through the gimmick.
How about the progression of main character Subaru? He is not overpowered and is set back by his delusion of grandeur, because he is the isekai hero transported to another world. Yet, he never changes his attitude, never moves forward, walks in circles between despair and strong proclamations usually to save every female character. He doesn’t change, circumstances around him do change.
Emilia, Rem, Ram, etc. is another appeal aside from pointless gore and emotional whiplash riding, why to watch the show. It is time for waifu characters. So, the only important point in the series is which girl you like. Emilia doesn’t know what she wants, Ram is tsundere and Rem, who made mistake of showing some initiative, has been turned into vegetable. Let’s not forget immortal loli, young girl from village and sadistic murderer, who can’t be killed for some unexplained reason. Then we have one-dimensional villain, great right?
So is this series good. Hell, no. It’s disaster still. You should watch it only if you don’t mind all the torture porn and the fact the storytelling is confusing as hell, where the main storyline is crawling at snail speed buried under dead ends. Quality by obfuscation doesn’t work. The main appeal of second season are the witches and reveal at the end. As for animation it’s good. Soundtrack is ok, again don’t care about OP and ED.
 It’s game, where each subsequent restart may change level and open new ending.
 Subaru and Emilia scene in the crypt. Yes, it’s in the show for real.
 Ram and Garfiel killed by Roswaal so he could proceed to beat up Subaru and then commit suicide by letting himself getting killed by man eating rabbits. Yes, that happened.
 Yes, I’m speaking about you Garfiel as example par excellence.
 When Subaru wakes in the crypt and it’s surrounded by the darkness and witch ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ appears.
Great storyline and characters since season 1. The Waiting cut for season 2's cut episodes is worth the wait for now.
If you like the first season and the wanted continuation then this is for you! Only downside is there will be only be 7 episodes until july 8th 2021 :( (obviously due to the virus)
Language Warning/Spoiler Warning
Before writing this review I just want to say... HOLY FUCK HOLY FUCK UFUCK UFKC UFKJCCU K HOLY FUCK WHAT IS THIS I AM HAVING A MENTAL BREAKDOWN HERE JESUS FUCKING CHRIST WHAT IS THIS ENDING
Okay bros, I have calmed myself down now.
Onto my review! -
This season of Re: Zero completely blew my mind. It was just THAT FUCKING GOOD! I cannot put into words just how awesome this was. I am very very excited for part 2 of this season.
The season started with the infamous, "Who's rem?" quote which completely destroyed many rem fans' minds. Subaru as usual dies... A LOT! Which probably doesn't surprise anybody. We get to see Subaru's backstory and more information about his parents. The entire trial was filled with emotional moments that made me cry hard.
We also get to see all 7 witches and more information about them in this season with a very hard-hitting and absolutely heartwarming scene with echidna.
Beatrice and Roswaal got screentime and more spicy things about them, each being some hard mindfucks for all of us.
Overall this part of the second season was just a roller coaster of emotions that fucked with everyone's minds and I'm sure the following part this new year will continue to do just that, if not better!
I'd recommend Re:Zero to anyone who hasn't watched it in a heartbeat. Definitely one of the best horror/psychological anime of all time. And that's not an exaggeration.
10/10 Great Anime!