Vandread: The Second Stage

TV (13 eps)
2001 - 2002
Fall 2001
3.853 out of 5 from 6,955 votes
Rank #1,754

The final test of Hibiki, Dita, Meia, Jura and their friends on the Nirvana draws near as the battle with their enemy's mothership approaches. In order to triumph, Hibiki will have to discover his true self, and the pilots will have to build a comradery strong enough to deploy their ultimate weapon...

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If you haven't seen the first season check that out first. In this season Hibiki and the rest of the crew of the Nirvana go through several of their biggest challenges yet as the Harvest ships from Earth commence more vicious assaults. I decided to write this review to answer this question: is the second season of Vandread worth watching? The answer I've come up with is this: There is definite improvement in many aspects of the show and if you enjoyed the first season at all then you will really enjoy the second season. If, however the personalities of some of the characters were unbearable for you to watch then don't try to put yourself through another season. While the storyline and character development of the show undergoes vast improvement, there's still underlying love triangle scenarios that were just painful to watch. Story 5/10 The story definetely unravels itself in a rather interesting way when compared with the first season. The crew from the Nirvana are going through a lot of emotional turmoil as they struggle to fight past the Harvest fleet in order to reach their home planet. The Harvest fleet has several new surprises in store for the heroic crew and they'll have to look deep within themselves to see if they have what it takes to overcome the odds. The plotline behind this anime has the deep significance of proving to yourself and others that there is a reason for your existance. The downside is they somewhat overdo it as episode after episode Hibiki relearns the same lesson that there is purpose for his existence. The love triangle between Hibiki and the girls Misty and Dita is really repetitive as well and at times downright annoying. Dita is constantly chasing after him trying to bribe him with food or toys and he's constantly shouting back that she's annoying and to leave him alone. During this season though at least their relationship goes through some minor development but it was still the hardest part about this anime to watch. Animation 6/10 This anime attempts to integrate cg into the action scenes. At times it looks pretty cool with lazers flying around everywhere but all in all it just seemed kind of cheesy. Especially due to the fact that with all these lazers flying around none of the Van pilots from the Nirvana ever seem to get seriously hit. Some of the Vandread combinations are kind of cool but for the most part they just have a power rangers kind of feel to them. Most of the characters themselves don't seem to have much originality behind their designs, with a couple of minor exceptions. Overall the animation just seemed to be somewhat simplistic for a sci-fi fantasy anime. Sound 6/10 Decent sound but nothing too fantastic. The intro song to this anime is a an adventurous and catchy tune. The ending song is a soothing melody. Both songs were average, not bad songs to listen to but definetely not masterpieces either. This anime featured some pretty cool space battle sound effects. As far as the voice acting goes the Japanese voice acting was a lot easier to listen to, that may be just because I got sick of hearing Dita and Hibiki shouting the same things over and over again in English though. Both English and Japanese did a good job with their characters, the problem was the characters had annoying and repetitive lines. Characters 3.5/10 There is quite a large cast of characters in this show. Some of them were cool characters like the stoic ace pilot Meia and some of them were funny like the silly girl with the frog puppet Paiway, but the majority of the characters were just frustratingly annoying, especially the main characters Hibiki and Dita. They were both excruciatingly repetive and along with Misty formed one of the most annoying love triangles I've ever seen in anime. The rest of the characters were on a case by case basis, since there's so many people on the Nirvana there's bound to be some characters you'll like and some you won't. One good thing is in this season several of the characters go through significant growth and character development and that was good to see, especially Bart who in the first season was a somewhat incompetent pilot of the Nirvana and freaked out over just about anything. In the second season he finds a reason to fight and really takes a stand. Overall 5.5/10  If you're a fan of sci-fi space anime then there are definetely better shows out there that have better action and better storylines to them. The romance aspect of this show is the most difficult part to watch. However if you like a simple story about a heroic crew with quite a few interesting characters then you just might enjoy this anime. The thing this show does well is all the side development of all the minor characters that turns it into a fairly compelling drama. In the end whether or not you like this series will be determined by if you find the characters you like worth watching along with the characters that you don't like.

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