This is a wholly unsurprising sequel, and it’s a wholly unsurprising show as well. Haiyore delivers what we expect most of the time, and that’s usually a good thing – this is a pretty funny show, occasionally hilarious, though I think it’s at its best when it doesn’t try too hard on the character front (and I rarely say that about an anime). I like those characters, but this series works best when it’s simply playing off their weirdness for comic affect and not trying to pluck our heartstrings much.
What’s changed for season two? Well, the OP and ED obviously – though the original (and rather brilliant) one does make a couple of guest appearances. And recognizing that they have a cash cow on their hands, Xebec has clearly plowed some extra budget into this season – Haiyore definitely looks smoother and more detailed than it did last year. Apart from that not much. Nyaruko (and Hastur) still want to jump Mahiro’s bones, and he still resists – fork in hand – at every turn. Most of the humor still springs from self-referential otaku gags and genre parodies. Perhaps Kukko is a little more openly lustful for Mahiro himself now, but the character dynamic mostly seems as unchanged as the comedic one.
What worked in the premiere? I laughed pretty hard at Kukko’s line about using the dimensional portals in the premiere “while there was still money in the budget”. We got guest appearances from OreShura and Sakurasou, and in-joke references to AKB48 and OniAi, among others. We had a pop-in from what could be a new recurring character, apparently the author of a certain BL doujin starring Mahiro that’s all the rage among the Old Ones. And I’m pretty certain that extra room that Nyaruko ordered from Y.com is going to prove to be the source of much chaos later on.
Now – will I blog Haiyore! this season? Hard to say. It was pretty close to the cutoff for me in S1 – I liked it, but it was sometimes hard to find much to say about it without ending up just being a catalogue of all the in-jokes. Haiyore seems like an ideal candidate for the Weekly Digest post format, one which I haven’t used in the last couple of seasons because the schedule hasn’t lent itself to it, but which I may bring back now. There are quite a few shows on this schedule – Mushibugyou comes to mind – that might be good fits for short posts rather than full-length ones. I’ll see how things shake out after I decide which shows are definitely making the blogging cut and go from there.