The Spring 2020 Anime Preview Guide
How would you rate episode 1 of
Tsugumomo2 (TV 2) ?
What is this?
In the wake of Kirihara joining Kazuya's class, lots of questions get raised about who Kirihara is and what her relationship is to Kazuya. Those closest to Kazuya, and those he has helped before with amasogi issues, get to know the full truth and are asked to join Kazuya in forming a Troubleshooting Club to collect information on other potential amasogi incidents. One immediately comes to mind: a rash of recent panty thefts. The culprit does ultimately prove to be a long-unused pair of panties which has turned into an amasogi, but since there was no strong emotional burst involved, the question lingers about how it manifested. Meanwhile another mysterious group within Kazuya's school seems to be aware of amasogi and have both their own agenda and tsukumogami.
How was the first episode?
This series is a direct sequel to 2017's Tsugumomo, to the point that it picks up the same day that the first series left off on and in the immediate wake of its closing event: Kirihara's arrival at school dressed as a student. What little time the episode spends explaining anything is more a quick refresher for those who may not have seen the series in a couple of years than a comprehensive explanation, so this is not at all an entry point for franchise newcomers. In fact, if you haven't seen the first season in a while then I heartily recommending skimming through it before setting out on this one, as it assumes that you remember a lot of relevant details.
The first season was, in a lot of senses, pretty typical for an action-oriented fan service show, so I was a bit surprised to hear that it was getting a sequel even though the first season very clearly set up for one. In fact, in retrospect the first season really just felt like the introductory chapter to a bigger story. The first episode of this season already shows signs of getting more into the meat of bigger plot lines, but it starts by setting up more convenient circumstances for all involved. Kirihara's presence in humanoid form at school is more justifiable if she can pass herself off as a student and Kazuya's activities will both draw less unwanted attention and become more efficient if a club is formed to support them. Hence these elements all make sense here even though they are retreads from countless other series from over the past 15 years.
In fact, almost nothing that this episode does has even the slightest spark of originality to it. The whole trial scene has been done numerous times before, and even the whole thing with a panty lure and animated panties has as well. (See My-Otome and Heaven's Lost Property, respectively.) And of course there's another mysterious group at the school who's going to be at cross purposes. Heck, the Next Episode preview is even showing that the whole “rival trying to marry the protagonist to preserve family honor” gimmick is, indeed, going to happen. (This was fully expected based on how the first season ended, however.) The one satisfying note is Kirihara's reassurance that Kazuya, even though he attracts malison, isn't properly to blame for the amasogi incidents, and the one interesting point is the suggested presence of another obi-based tsukumogami, this one in the form of a dark-haired girl.
Battle animation is still handled relatively well, and the fan service and sexual harassment (of Kazuya) are back for better or worse, but on the whole this is an uninspired continuation of what was a merely decent series to begin with.
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