Kaguya-sama: Love is War S2 Episode 12 [Final Impressions]

And thus all good things must come to an end with this final episode of Kaguya-sama. Though I do admit this episode felt a little underwhelming compared to last week’s episode. It’s not that the episode was bad, it’s just that Ishigami’s arc was just done so well and felt like a finale itself. Though I do understand that the anime staff wanted to end it more on a Shirogane x Kaguya note.

The episode started out very cute… and then it got creepy with the principal taking pictures of Iino and telling her stuff like “leave your body to me.” No… just no. Kaguya-sama I love you, but please stop pulling crap like that. Thankfully the moment doesn’t last too long and we get a rather heartbreaking scene with Kaguya and her phone breaking. There is a lot of Kaguya introspective and showcases several ways her family essentially keeps her closed off to others in a way. She’s prohibited from having her face posted anywhere on any media, which is pretty sad considering it’s definitely not fun to be the only one left out. Especially when it shows that Kaguya does want to be included, but her family won’t let her. Not only that, but she even started taking pictures, cataloguing her memories with everyone. And my heart absolutely burst when her friends offered to take a picture of all of them for a keepsake… only for it to break into a million pieces just like her phone when she accidentally drops it off the roof.

At first I thought she would be able to get her photos back at least so I wasn’t too sad even though she was crying over losing them… and then I realized the severity of the situation. Because her phone was so old, it stored memory internally rather than on an SD card like phones do nowadays so that meant all the memories she had built up within her phone were gone and I just felt SO BAD. So it only made sense that Kaguya would be depressed over losing precious memories that she feels would never come back. And seeing the photos she took of everyone throughout the seasons just broke my heart. Despite how she acts, she does treasure these people and their memories together. She just felt so down that she couldn’t even bother to keep up her tsun-tsun side and did and said things upfront.

We also get another look into Kaguya’s upbringing of how her family doesn’t share their troubles with others. Which is probably why Kaguya just internalizes a lot of her problems and will always work around the subject rather than just outright stating her issue. Seeing how her family has treated her and have her do makes it seem like such a distant and cold upbringing, which is really sad. But I’m glad that she was able to create bonds within the student council which help bring her out into a more friendly light. Not only allowing her to feel a sense of belonging, but they also bring the best out of her and watch out for her. Despite the chaos that they tend to create, they all care about each other and want to help each other out when one is feeling down. I love how they all pitched in and shared all of the pictures they all took, restoring memories that Kaguya thought she had lost. It was such a sweet moment, especially when Kaguya broke down what is expected of her and actually told them what was bothering her. It was such a subtle character developing moment, but still just as sweet. Made all the more sweeter when the student council finally all took a group picture together, just for Kaguya.

Another detail I noticed was Kaguya’s ponytail was basically portraying her mood throughout the episode. At the beginning it was up as usual, but once her phone broke, it was pointed downwards. But after everyone shared their pictures with the group, her hair went back up. It was a cute little detail and it definitely did its job to show just how dejected she felt.

I’m gonna be honest with you. I felt pretty disappointed that the balloon popping game was going to be the season finale. I thought the season would end with Kaguya’s phone, leaving off on a touching note. But then it switched back to silly and I was a little annoyed at that. It was a cute little skit, don’t get me wrong, but it felt anticlimactic. Though I admit I laughed at how everyone would basically go back on their character development when faced with the terrifying presence of this giant balloon. Kaguya having to let go of the side of her face to blow up the balloon while internally freaking out over it was just hilarious. And then Ishigami essentially taking back all of his development from the last arc over this balloon ticked me so hard. He even made sure he moved his bangs so both his eyes were shown for the moment. Come now Ishigami, facing people and this balloon are two completely different situations lol.

And then… the best thing happened. My disappointment completely dissipated when the balloon popped and the freaking explosion from the first season’s opening happened. I absolutely lost it and just had to applaud the episode. Alright Kaguya-sama, YOU GOT ME. That was good lololol. I legit forgot how outrageous the final part of the episodes are for the finales of the anime. That whole sequence was just so unexpected and hilarious with everyone just kind of flying around, making sure you remember them that I couldn’t help but love this episode. A great send off to a great season indeed.


Final Impressions:

This season has been an absolute delight to watch. It had its ups and downs, but overall, it was just a fun season. But I have to admit that this season was honestly a lot more Ishigami centric than I expected and it was great. It made me appreciate him as a character a lot more and we could see his development and growth and just how much he’s changed from the weak-willed introvert from the first season. And the pay off we get in the school festival arc was just 10/10. Ishigami was definitely one of my favorite parts of this new season. I wouldn’t say he’s my favorite character, but he grew on me a lot and I’d probably consider him my 2nd or 3rd favorite out of the Kaguya cast.

Not only did Ishigami grow on me, but also Shirogane. I always kind of liked him, but I never cared THAT much about him until this season. Shirogane was amazing in this season as it showed a lot more of his good sides and just why Kaguya liked him so much. Not to mention he is absolutely best boy by being the one to come and save Ishigami during his suspension.

And while the guys have climbed up in the ranks, Kaguya I feel kind of slipped a little. I was still endeared to her and amused me, I felt like I cared about her a little less this season. I talked to a friend about it and we both agreed that Kaguya wasn’t being a particularly good friend at certain points. She threw both Chika and Hayasaka under the bus multiple times this season and while yes, Kaguya’s upbringing has much to do with how she views others. But I feel like she still needs to work on being a better friend. Though, there’s still room for her to grow especially since bad habits are hard to break. I know you’re better than this Kaguya, SO SHOW ME SOME GROWTH.

Iino… oh Iino. I’m still not a fan of her, especially since I feel like she doesn’t really add much to the group dynamic. I find myself liking her friend (I’m sorry, I still can’t remember her name) more since she seems like she’s the actual straightman who can see through the chaos. And then Chika… is Chika. I never cared that much about her initially and it remains that way. I know, controversial opinions yet again. She has her moments, but I’m mostly put off by how childish she can be at certain situations.

There were a couple of episodes that I wasn’t a fan of, but overall, I still very much liked this season. Especially when we actually get to see the progression of Kaguya and Shirogane’s relationship and it’s not the same as it was in season 1. Even when their mind games come into play, they’re not as cut and dry as they once were as their growing feelings are now starting to get in the way. It feels like there is a pay off waiting to happen, but not quite yet. The jokes still land, forcing me to pause the episode because I was laughing so much. There are also quite a lot more heartfelt moments incorporated into this season and it was just a joy watching the characters become closer, especially in regards to Kaguya and Ishigami. Platonically of course, but seeing how close the two have gotten enough for Ishigami to playfully tease her in the last episode was very adorable. But nothing can even come close to the greatness of the brotp of Shirogane and Ishigami. NOT AFTER THAT SCENE IN LAST EPISODE.

Also, can we just talk about the animation throughout this season? IT WAS JUST BIZARRELY AMAZING. I talked about it before, but there are just some moments where they didn’t need the amount of detail in the animation AND YET THEY STILL DID IT. Like when Kaguya was dancing and when the phone fell off the roof. I legit started laughing because of how well animated they made that phone dropping. A-1 was just flexing all over the place in this season, showing just how much fun and passion there was for this series. And honestly, I feel like the animation added to the humor in scenes. A-1 did a fantastic job with this series and I’m glad they were able to finish making it before the pandemic happened.

I laughed, I cried, I had the full range of emotions during this season and I will miss it. Hopefully there will be another season since the story is still going strong and there is still a lot to come as I’ve seen in the manga. I had so much fun covering this series and it’s sad to see it come to an end. I solid 8.5/10 for a wonderful and hilarious series.

Shadow

A passionate yet somewhat awkward individual who just wants to talk about anime

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