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This Week in Anime - Does Castlevania Season 2 Deliver on its Early Potential?




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AiddonValentine



Joined: 07 Aug 2006
Posts: 1393
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 2:57 pm Reply with quote
Yeah, this seriously wrecked things in spectacular fashion. A lot of it is pretty much Dracula's show, displaying his central importance to everything and the machinations of his court. You have the two misanthropic humans who detest their kind in different ways, the hedonistic Godbrand, and the disruptive, greedy Carmilla. It also shows how Dracula, despite being the king of vampires and claiming to detest humans, seems to be very distant to vampires. He doesn't really have a high opinion of them, in fact having deep-seated contempt for them, looking at them to be a bunch of animals driven by hunger. Just look at how Carmilla genuinely does not understand why Dracula married Lisa and why he's enraged over her death because of how emotionally inept she is

Despite all that, he's still the biggest guy in the room. His dressing down of Godbrand and the final battle in particular really show the only reason anyone gets away with anything in his court is because of his extreme apathy. If this guy had proper fire in his soul it wouldn't have even been a contest.

It's also neat how they're clearly going into Curse of Darkness territory with the status quo at the end of Season 2 (and Season 3 is happening, Richard Armitage is doing voice recording right now: https://twitter.com/RCArmitage/status/1058027258181492737). Now to see what they do with that and beyond just Trevor's generation.

Speaking of which: Leon. LoI (or at least some version of it) is canon. That portrait is an almost straight rip of Leon's official artwork from the game. That's definitely one story I want to see adapted because it provides so much context for the series. It showed that the Belmonts' battle with Dracula wasn't just about hunters going after a powerful vampire, but a lot more personal than that. That's the kind of stuff that redefines the series.

The high point is probably Episode 7 which is basically a Dragon Ball Z fight. The second Bloody Tears lit up that's when you knew this was Castlevania. Also neat, someone actually compiled a BUNCH of references found in the library alluding to the games.

https://io9.gizmodo.com/1830098975

And they hid wall chicken in Episode 7. It's when Dracula and Alucard burst into the dining hall.
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Takizawa-Shinzou



Joined: 28 Jul 2006
Posts: 22
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 4:36 pm Reply with quote
"This week in ANIME" talks about a show that isn't anime.

Season 2 was a lot better than season 2. All the references to the games and what not. I still can't like the character designs or overall art style though.
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H. Guderian



Joined: 29 Jan 2014
Posts: 1105
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 7:29 pm Reply with quote
I just marathoned 6 of the episodes now, and took a break to find this. I think its doing pretty well. Some of the animation isn't holding up.

But I am enjoying it. Some people started being squeaky about the Producer, but I found anything that might worry anyone about this adaptation to be easy to digest.

I mean, how many game adaptations are able to stray this far and still be good? Its a milestone!

Edit: Completed! Ep 7 was fantastic, Ep 8 felt like it went on too long.

Pretty damn nice.
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ZiharkXVI



Joined: 29 Jan 2009
Posts: 142
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 9:31 pm Reply with quote
The first season was dumb. I'll just get that out of the way right up front. Despite people telling me being dark is better, it does us no good if the story doesn't add up...and until season 2 it just didn't. Season 2 was better, but got better towards the end. Don't get me wrong, the story actually was more interesting immediately (ditching the boring anti-religious stuff that really didn't matter to our heroes, and was only tangential to the villain). But it was weird at first as out main characters seemed to be the vampire court, every now and again cutting back to our "heroes" in the library looking for the dewey decimal system. But by the end the series shifted focus for a third time and brought home what makes castlevania shine. Some monster killing in style! I actually think Carmella was who became the turning point, and her character is the best.
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russ869



Joined: 22 Dec 2006
Posts: 326
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2018 12:57 pm Reply with quote
AiddonValentine wrote:
And they hid wall chicken in Episode 7. It's when Dracula and Alucard burst into the dining hall.

Woah, I have to find this! Anybody got a screenshot?
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WatcherZer



Joined: 29 Dec 2016
Posts: 125
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2018 2:27 pm Reply with quote
Its the dialog which makes the series work and stops its just being generic western fantasy animation.


Camilla turning to Hector after the teleporting castle catastrophe wipes out her army and causes complete pandemonium, "What the fudge Just Happened?"
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NeverConvex



Joined: 08 Jun 2013
Posts: 691
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2018 2:35 pm Reply with quote
I'd prefer generic Western fantasy (which sounds perfectly fine to me, if well done) to awkward forcing of modern dialogue into a setting where it comes off as jarring and strange.

What I found most bothersome about the dialogue wasn't the juxtaposition of modern language with a medieval setting, though. It was:

A) the long armchair psychoanalyses of other character's motivations and the constant gender-politic complaints when they weren't relevant to anything in the show,

B) that a lot of it just fell painfully flat, notably anything coming out of Godbrand's animated mouth, and

C) that the dialogue often seemed to be more the script writer just kind've speaking directly to us rather than attempting to cater their dialogue to individual characters. Alucard in particular did not come off as aloof or impassive, but as nearly as crude and boorish as Trevor.
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Scion Drake



Joined: 25 Nov 2017
Posts: 136
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2018 3:16 pm Reply with quote
NeverConvex wrote:
I'd prefer generic Western fantasy (which sounds perfectly fine to me, if well done) to awkward forcing of modern dialogue into a setting where it comes off as jarring and strange.

What I found most bothersome about the dialogue wasn't the juxtaposition of modern language with a medieval setting, though. It was:

A) the long armchair psychoanalyses of other character's motivations and the constant gender-politic complaints when they weren't relevant to anything in the show,

B) that a lot of it just fell painfully flat, notably anything coming out of Godbrand's animated mouth, and

C) that the dialogue often seemed to be more the script writer just kind've speaking directly to us rather than attempting to cater their dialogue to individual characters. Alucard in particular did not come off as aloof or impassive, but as nearly as crude and boorish as Trevor.


There wasn’t really any gender-politics, it’s just Carmilla calling all the guy’s children which is supposed to highlight her own ignorance of how she’s no different.

I enjoy the crude dialogue, gives it a dry wit that you don’t hear often which makes it unique. Godbrand was a real hoot, especially when he started talking about how running water might kill him or screaming out how their all gonna die after talking to Dracula.
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NeverConvex



Joined: 08 Jun 2013
Posts: 691
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2018 3:30 pm Reply with quote
Yes, gender politics was a poor choice of words (chosen because it involved, well, the mixing of gender and politics, but it still wasn't really gender politics), but I'm lost to find a good, pithy phrase for it.

What I meant is that Carmilla and Sypha spent some 30% of their dialogue complaining about the leadership (for Carmilla) and personalities (both of them) of the men around them, and dressing down the male characters for (all, apparently) never growing up. That conversation is recycled over and over in the show, and was constantly harped on despite not being well-motivated by anything else going on. Near as I can tell Warren Ellis just thinks it's hilarious or interesting to have his female characters explicitly complain that his male characters are all living out their stunted childhoods as adults.

I do not understand how you enjoyed Godbrand, but I guess I'm glad someone did. All of his jokes read like tired reddit memes ("I'm a viking! I love to make boats!"), and his constant lame-brained cracks were a serious atmosphere-killer. I could have appreciated Godbrand if the show had billed itself as primarily comedy, but as is he just felt deeply out-of-place.
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Scion Drake



Joined: 25 Nov 2017
Posts: 136
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2018 3:54 pm Reply with quote
NeverConvex wrote:
Yes, gender politics was a poor choice of words (chosen because it involved, well, the mixing of gender and politics, but it still wasn't really gender politics), but I'm lost to find a good, pithy phrase for it.

What I meant is that Carmilla and Sypha spent some 30% of their dialogue complaining about the leadership (for Carmilla) and personalities (both of them) of the men around them, and dressing down the male characters for (all, apparently) never growing up. That conversation is recycled over and over in the show, and was constantly harped on despite not being well-motivated by anything else going on. Near as I can tell Warren Ellis just thinks it's hilarious or interesting to have his female characters explicitly complain that his male characters are all living out their stunted childhoods as adults.

I do not understand how you enjoyed Godbrand, but I guess I'm glad someone did. All of his jokes read like tired reddit memes ("I'm a viking! I love to make boats!"), and his constant lame-brained cracks were a serious atmosphere-killer. I could have appreciated Godbrand if the show had billed itself as primarily comedy, but as is he just felt deeply out-of-place.


Peter Stormare gave a good performance, it’s not hard to understand.

Plus aside from being the source of levity among his more serious-minded compatriots & sound-board for Isaac & Hector’s characters to come across, he showed some surprising intelligence by being the first one to ask Dracula what are they gonna eat & realized he had no intention of leaving any human alive thus starving the vampires, wisely backed off from fighting him, & his slaughtering scenes showed that despite the comedy he is still a vampire general & a murdering monster.

So in the end he wasn’t a complete one-note joke machine & was an entertaining character all things considered.
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NeverConvex



Joined: 08 Jun 2013
Posts: 691
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2018 4:06 pm Reply with quote
I honestly thought most of the voice acting was really good (Godbrand included), no argument there. And I appreciated the one non-comedic role they gave that character, which you noted. (Although I thought the repeated dive into 'mechanics of vampires and how they work' was generally strange. That kind of thing can fit into either a comedy or a sober action/drama, but the way it was handled here felt like it was undercutting a sober action/drama with a parody-like handling of how vampires work. Tonal inconsistency, I guess.)

I just didn't appreciate the rest of his character. It felt to me like a late-night Adult Swim parody character had been accidentally teleported into the middle of an otherwise serious(-ish) take on the Castlevania universe.

The way Godbrand was handled is actually kind've a microcosm for a lot my problems with the show's handling of its vampires. Political intrigue and treachery in Dracula's court is one thing, but the vampire leadership came off as generally very dimwitted and childish, which is hard to sell without explicitly making the series a comedy. I don't mind humanized vampire leadership (to a point), but I do very much mind vampire leadership that behave like squabbling teenagers...

... unless we're mostly supposed to be laughing at this and not assigning it any verisimilitude whatsoever. But I don't think the series ever really committed one way or the other on that, and that was its primary failing.
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Errinundra
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Joined: 14 Jun 2008
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2018 5:02 pm Reply with quote
Troll post and responses deleted.
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NeverConvex



Joined: 08 Jun 2013
Posts: 691
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2018 5:40 pm Reply with quote
russ869 wrote:
AiddonValentine wrote:
And they hid wall chicken in Episode 7. It's when Dracula and Alucard burst into the dining hall.

Woah, I have to find this! Anybody got a screenshot?


I do also want to see this. I definitely missed it.
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AiddonValentine



Joined: 07 Aug 2006
Posts: 1393
PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2018 4:26 pm Reply with quote
russ869 wrote:
AiddonValentine wrote:
And they hid wall chicken in Episode 7. It's when Dracula and Alucard burst into the dining hall.

Woah, I have to find this! Anybody got a screenshot?


Behold, delicious wall meat:

https://twitter.com/AdamDeats/status/1057806198571970562
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