After having finished the first season of this cringey ecchi harem, I decided to continue the drunk weekend with the sequel. With a name like Samurai Bride, I had certain high expectations of this sequel, hopes that it would improve on the original. I'd heard that his one was somehow worse than the original, so I'd find out for myself. I could only find a good version of this in Japanese, which I didn't want to watch, due to my hate of Rie Kugimiya's voice and the unfortunate reliance on having to read subtitles. Things got worse, as I 'd lost my marbles earlier in the week and had started my drunk weekend a day too early, thus booze was running out. The only hope, was for this anime to be good enough to not require alcohol to get through it. If one thought Hyakka Ryouran couldn't get any worse, they started a slutty maid cafe...
This review builds on the original review of the first season and many things remain the same, so I won't point those things out here. Instead, I expect for you to have watched the first season and/or read my review of it. Which is here by the way. I'll also add that I generally dislike the ecchi-harem genre, especially due to the unjustified nudity and the usual lack of plot, particularly where a conclusion to the harem is concerned.
The animation remains the same as before. I watched this in 720p because a reasonable 1080p version was tricky to find. Still showed the same quality though. Please see review of season one for further details. Or else, I'd literally just copy and paste it here. Look I'll make it easier for ya, just click here.
The sound mostly remains the same as before. Of course the intro and outro sequences are a bit different. I found both the intro and outro music better than the season one outro music. Heck, I was rather tempted to get the soundtrack for this anime. While this is actually available in both English and Japanese, I was unable to find a satisfactory version in English, so I decided to take the bullet and watch it in Japanese with subtitles. Once again, I cringed every time Yukimura talked. And I got annoyed at some of the high pitched Japanese voices. But that's just anime I guess. On the plus side, at least David Matranga's voice can retain some dignity by me not hearing it here. For the rest of the sound, please see the original review. Of if in future, you'd prefer me to literally copy and paste the section in, because it doesn't differ in this second season of the same anime, let me know in the comments. Overall, the sound improved in this season.
These remain mostly the same. So once again please see the original review or let me know if I should just copy and paste the old sections in here. That said, there are new additions to the character roster and a few new abilities.
The lot of them appear to be more gullible than before, especially Jubei. Jubei had lost her powers after the end of season one. Matabei apparently now has the ability to sniff stuff out like a dog. Yukimura also seems to act like more of a mean bitch. Though it might just be Rie Kugimiya's type-casted voice, but damn she's mean to the likes of Kanetsugu. She is also the mastermind behind the maid cafe and deals with the numbers and managements.
Yukimura also has a pet monkey Sasuke that she is reunited with. I hate that fucking monkey, it's the most perverted character in the anime and it's an animal! Think it's a guy? Well even the f***ing monkey kisses Muneakira and becomes a slutty girl with monkey ears and a tail. This monkey is also popular among customers in the maid cafe. I hated the BS from the dog in Gantz, so I won't forgive the monkey here.
Kanetsugu gets treated even more like a dog, heck worse. She goes from being the annoying dunce to being the victim and getting bullied by the scumbag monkey. Heck I really empathised with Kanetsugu here. Gisen returns and is up to her usual sneaky, seductive antics. Incidentally, Muneakira's taste in mens clothing has improved since he wears boxers. Like Jubei, she seems to have lost some of her powers.
A new character is the busty Keiji Maeda, perverted master of chi who is barely wearing any clothing. She seems to be a delinquent, nomadically riding her motorbike around Japan and groping other chicks breasts. This character is lesbian, which would be fine in any other anime, but here it mean sexualy harassment and the fact she can't stand men, results in her treating Muneakira like dirt, not just in a tsundere way. Could have been an interesting character if they did it right.
Thevillains are four dark samurai who awaken during the first episode. They are failry powerful and come in various forms. Mushashi Miyamoto is the one that stands out the most, the short pink-haried girl literally becomes friends with the protagonists and is a regular customer to the cafe. Mataemon Araki is the scantily clad dark samurai who is more aggressive and likes to fight a lot. Inshun Houzouin is the child-like one, who appears to sometimes wear a muzzle. Kojirou Sasaki is the one with the wierd markings above her eyebrows and usually wears a blind-fold which allows her to hypnotise victims.
Half a year after the events of the original, Muneakira returns to the dojo, only to find that it has been transformed into a maid cafe due to financial difficulties. Not only that, but Yoshihiko Yagyuu who had his ass kicked at the end of the first season, was officially recognised as the saviour of great Japan, much to the dismay of the protagonists. Jubei remains unable to transform into a master samurai after the events of season one and Muneakira's powers of a general are sealed by newly awakened dark samurai in the first episode. Already rather disappointing. Worse than the first season if I do say so myself. Though the disappearance of Jubei and Muneakira's power being sealed seemed like an interesting turn of events. Except for the fact that its a load of bollocks since Muneakira still has the ability to make new master samurai. The plot is even more predictable than the first season, anything with Kanetsugu ends up going badly for her and upping the popularity of the slut-monkey (I apologise for the language, I really hate the monkey). They even take an entire eisode to have a friendly competition between the protagonists and antagonists.
But the real promise of the story came from the titular samurai bride. Each general can only have one and these are one step-better than master samurai. And without spoiling anything, to make a Samurai Bride a harem must be 'concluded.' That alone was promising and if there was a conclusion to the harem, I'd be willing to give it major praise. Once again, the second half of the anime is more serious and versed in the rather predictable story. Heck, there is literally no continuation of story, despite the returning cast of characters. It's like a terrible movie sequel, where once again the world is in danger from a completely new threat that was somehow there all along and only the protagonists can save it, for the umpteenth time. The idea of 'Chi' being the power behind the master samurai was introduced, despite no mention of it in season one. It did get pretty epic and thrilling towards the end, but it was mixed with predictable turn of events and cheesy BS. They even mess with the plot mechanic of character deaths like only a bad anime can, so expect plot armour. All I can say about the harem/romance aspect is that it concludes just like every other generic harem-ecchi. A disappointment, since it looked like they were really trying to make this story good.
I can now understand why a lot of people thought this was worse than the first season. More bullshit, more filler, even people who like harem ecchi seemed to dislike this. I was actually bored for some of this season, as opposed to the first one where I drunkenly paid attention and shouted at shocking events. But on the plus side, the story ended up being better and weighs out the negatives to make this just as good as the first season. Or bad, depending on how one looks at it. This is one of those animes where the second half is so much better and people would unfortunately not see it, due to dropping it within the early episodes. Once again, I'd only recommend this for harem-ecchi fans as one of the better animes in the genre, if only for the animation style and the actual storyline bubbling away and bursting through during the halfway point. Otherwise, I'm glad I never have to watch this again. Good riddance.
Family-friendliness Rating: 5/5 Nudity and typical harem-ecchi BS and yet more dodgy scenes (lower is better)
Overall Rating: 4/10 (higher is better)
"Samurai Bride" - A Disappointing Sequel
Story (3/10): "Samurai Bride" is a sequel to the ecchi action series "Hyakka Ryouran: Samurai Girls." Unfortunately, this installment falls short in several ways. The story continues to follow the group of samurai girls, but the plot lacks depth and originality. It relies heavily on fan service and repetitive comedic elements, making it feel like a weaker retread of the first season. The attempts at character development and emotional moments often fall flat, leaving the narrative unsatisfying.
Animation (4/10): The animation in "Samurai Bride" is serviceable but doesn't stand out. The character designs remain consistent with the first season, featuring exaggerated and voluptuous female characters. While the action sequences are decently animated, they don't bring anything new to the table, and the fan service can be excessive, detracting from the overall quality.
Sound (4/10): The soundtrack of "Samurai Bride" is forgettable, lacking memorable themes or compositions. The voice acting is competent, but the characters often come across as one-dimensional, which limits the voice actors' ability to shine. The sound effects during action scenes are standard and don't add much to the viewing experience.
Characters (2/10): One of the major drawbacks of "Samurai Bride" is the lack of character development and depth. The samurai girls, who had some potential for growth in the first season, remain largely stagnant. Their interactions and relationships are shallow, and the new characters introduced in this installment fail to make a significant impact. The series relies heavily on character archetypes and fan service, making it difficult to connect with the characters on a meaningful level.
Overall (2/10): "Samurai Bride" is a disappointing sequel that fails to capture the charm and intrigue of its predecessor. The story is lackluster, the animation and sound are unremarkable, and the characters lack depth and growth. While the first season had its share of fan service, it managed to balance it with an engaging narrative and character development. Unfortunately, "Samurai Bride" leans too heavily into fan service at the expense of a compelling story and well-rounded characters. Unless you're a die-hard fan of the series, it's hard to recommend "Samurai Bride," and even then, you might find it a letdown.
Right, it's confession time for me. If you have been reading my reviews than you may have noticed that I tend to rip the anime a new one. There is a reason for this though and it has to do with the fact that I can't turn my brain off when watching anime. I can't ignore the stupid shown in the anime and this is a problem as most anime are very stupid indeed.
In this case I'm not talking about a 90 pound girl catching a multi-ton cruise missile and throwing it back. Yes, it is stupid but it is a stupid that I'll allow. It's anime. Things like this are normal here and I'm pretty much fine with it. It annoys me to be sure but I will not rant about it.
So, having explained this lets rip into this anime shall we? Just a heads up: There will most probably be spoilers. The more I hate an anime the more spoilers there will be.
ART: No real complaints here as it looks pretty good. They do try to spice things up by switching the art up at times. Usually it looks crisp and clear but sometimes it has a more faded look. One other thing is of importance to note and those are the 'inkblots' that pop up everywhere. Now I must admit that I kind of like these blots that pop up as it is something different for once. If I have one complaint is that they are EVERYEHERE ALL THE TIME. The problem with this is that it often hides what is going on. Normally not an issue as nothing is really happening but during a battle it is very hard to see who is fighting who and what they are doing.
SOUND: Meh. Can't really say much about it as I rarely pay attention to the music. The less I notice it the better it is really. Voice actors were sadly underused for this and I hope they got paid enough to attach their names to this.
CHARACTERS: Main character is Muneakira. As a descendant of the Yagyu clan all he wants to do is open the dojo at the Buou Academy and continue his studies as a Samurai.
Jubei is a mysterious girl that appears out of thin air and bonds with Muneakira. She is a very powerful Master Samurai and very skilled but powered down she is a hopeless ditz.
Sen is a high ranking Togugawa noble who attends Buou Academy. Upon learning of Muneakira's gift of making people Master Samurai she sets out to make him hers. She runs the student council with the help of Hanzo, her loyal servant.
Yukimura is a high ranking noble of the Sanada clan and rival of Sen. She is a gifted strategist and has a great dislike of Sen. She is accompanied by Matabei who serves her in every way.
Kanetsugu is a childhood friend of Sen but has a grudge against her. She is send to spy on her but she too goes after Muneakira to become a Master Samurai.
Gisen is a powerful Master Samurai who calls Jubei her big sister. There is a lot of history between the 2 although Jubie can't remember any of it.
STORY: In a Japan where the Togugawa clan remained in power, samurai still exist and make up a big part of society. Defense of Japan has been in the hands of Master Samurai who are created by making a pact with a 'general'. Unfortunately there are very few generals left as most lines have died out over the years. By accident, Muneakira, discovers that he is a general with the power of creating Master Samurai. He quickly becomes surrounded by numerous girls wishing to become Master Samurai and they'll stop at nothing to achieve it. Meanwhile an ancient power has awakened bent on destroying Japan.
RANT: Look, I'm aware of what this anime is and that it is all about the fan service. I've watched the first series and, while bad, it had some redeaming qualities. This series has no such excuses.
The story is even weaker as the one in the first season. The villain is even worse. While introduced in the opening scene they literally do nothing but hang around for most of the series. When they finally go to make a move it gets interrupted by the real bad guy and shit gets down.
By this point you stopped caring though so you are either asleep or getting dinner. Trust me that you missed nothing.
Watch it for the fan service with a lot of full frontal nudity.
Story: it was better as it got in to more of the EP'S. loved what they did on the story and the ending give it more room to go up and up in a good way.
Animation: same as the frist season nice job
Sound: nice and great
Characters: nice new cast love them and the new girls where very good and there power was out of this world crazy strong and fast.
Unlike Samurai Girls, Samurai Bride has a really unfocused story and it introduces way too many new characters. The four dark samurai's are very weak villians compared to Gisen in Samurai Girls, however I do like the main characters and that's pretty much why I kept watching, nor is the show ever boring. If you liked/loves Samurai Girls then yeah I mildly recomend this, if you hated it then you probably won't like this one either. More in video review: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pHqZSP5mWl8
BBFC rating - 15 for sexualized nudity