Princess Connect Re:Dive returns to our screens this season with its second season, a gorgeous follow-up to the 2020 series that few expected to be so entertaining and charming. This next season seems to have decided to go the route of bigger and better, and that’s evident in the episodic adventures they’re up to this season, but also the more serious plot elements that bubble under the surface. Just what is Princess Connect Re:Dive up to this season, and given that we’re almost halfway through the season, can we expect this to outshine the first season? We certainly think so, but here’s why!
Even Better Animation
One thing that stood out about the Princess Connect Re:Dive anime was how good the art and animation were. For a series that is a spin-off of a videogame, Princess Connect Re:Dive is incredibly well-made, and even the most insignificant shots in each episode are beautifully crafted. It’s a delight to look at, and that helps it in being more immersive than one would expect. Since this is an anime about food, it goes without saying that CygamesStudios had a lot of budget in the chamber to animate the various dishes and ingredients that are seen throughout the series. Some of the most beautiful shots come in the night scene towards the end of the second episode of season 2, in which a broody Karyl listens as her comrades call out her name while searching for her.
Backgrounds and landscapes are especially gorgeous in this series, and if you take nothing else from it, know that it will at least be a feast for your eyes. The show really drives home the culinary aspect with in-universe architecture reminiscent of desserts and cakes.
While it isn’t necessarily an action-focused anime, the second season of Princess Connect Re:Dive really knows how to drive home the combat scenes even though they’re rather short lived. When it comes to action scenes that aren’t combat, like the idol concert in episode 2, Princess Connect really makes sure to drive home the emotion felt by the character with really awesome-looking sequences. The CGI crowd looked immense!
Plot Bubbling Under the Surface
While it takes a cheerful stance to its storytelling, there are some more serious elements that are at work in Princess Connect Re:Dive, and these work their way through the fantasy setting upon which the story is built. One thing that is pretty easy to forget is the fact that our adorable catgirl Karyl is a double-agent working for an enemy that seeks to eliminate Pecorine and keep tabs on Yuuki. The mysterious woman, Kaiser Insight, is an older catwoman who makes the allusion that she and Karyl are related by blood, and perhaps the only such relationship she has.
Karyl’s conscience is clearly besieged by her betrayal of the Gourmet Guild, since each member has become a close friend of hers. She struggles with her loyalty to her friends and her fealty to Kaiser Insight, but she can’t keep it up much longer - Kaiser knows that Karyl has interfered with her plans before, but she forgives Karyl for her error. Meanwhile, Pecorine wants Kokkoro to maintain her secret for a while longer. If you forgot, Pecorine is actually the Princess of Landssol, Princess Iustitia. Kokkoro is more than happy to keep her lips sealed, and the journey continues. Karyl plays her double agent role even more intensely following the second episode, and who knows, maybe she might succumb to her fealty and try to take out Pecorine, friendship withstanding.
Something strange happens in the third episode when the Gourmet Guild help some high schoolers bag a scholarship. They explore a nearby forest in which they find a graveyard. It seemed to have just appeared out of nowhere, but they don’t really mind it that much. They explore some more and then arrive at the same graveyard. The first high schooler they met, Yuni, has a nifty navigator in the form of Rosetta, a consciousness she uploaded to a random stone she found once. Upon arriving in the graveyard the second time, Yuni asks Rosetta for their location as she did earlier, but she responds in a monstrous voice before the forest and its forces become maligned.
A zombie emerges from one of the graves and for an instant, the area around its arm glitches, almost like a software bug. Is this perhaps the season when it all becomes apparent that the events of the series are all just happening in a video game? They’re surrounded by skeletons that change the environment to a fiery landscape and impart memories – memories of a country that doesn’t exist, at least not on their plane. Whether or not that was just an isolated incident, or indicative of the series’ desire to break open this world, only time will tell!
Given the episodic approach of the series, the Gourmet Guild gang go on several adventures, ranging from the mildly inconvenient to the downright impossible. So far this season, they go searching for a mysterious ingredient borne from the tears of pregnant giant turtles, go on a dangerous journey to find special silk for an idol group’s performance attire, help a group of regular students attending a prestigious institution bag a scholarship, and more! This season is set up to be a fun ride just like the previous was, and it’s off to a really good start as it takes us through a lighthearted adventure with adorable characters, and it will probably be even better than last season was! What do you think about this season of Princess Connect Re:Dive so far? Drop a comment below and tell us your thoughts!