Durarara!!x2 Shou – 02

Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -6 Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -18 Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -25

Don’t try this at home.

It occurs to me in watching Durarara unspool again, five years on,  that this is a pretty dangerous formula in the wrong hands.  It would be wrong to say Narita-sensei invented it – and the accompanying tropes which populate his works, especially DRRR – but he’s certainly a pioneer, and comes as close as anyone to perfecting the execution.  There are times when I find myself getting annoyed with some of what plays out on-screen, before I catch myself and remember that this isn’t a LN ripping off Durarara – this is Durarara.

That still leads to a curious conundrum, though – it’s not like I can unsee the five years worth of generic LN adaptations that have forever tainted the medium since the first DRRR aired.  The series hasn’t changed much but anime has, and so have I.  None of that is the fault of the series, which has been continuing uninterrupted in LN form, and remains just as well-crafted as ever.  And Omori Takahro and Takagi Noboru certainly haven’t lost their touch.  But is it really possible to be a viewer with the personal history (and biases) that have built up since 2010-11 and enjoy this show as much as I did then?  It’s an interesting experiment – time will tell.

In the actual event, it’s hard not to admire Narita, Omori, and Takagi’s ability to keep as many plates spinning as they do.  As if the dizzying array of character stories the first series had isn’t enough, there’s the constant jumping back and forth in time, and now we’re seeing even more characters added to the mix.  Among those are Izaya’s younger twin sisters Kururi and Mairi (present in the first season but just barely relevant) and a new boy played by Hiro Shimono (I told you, if they’re a big name they all appear in DRRR sooner or later) named Kuronuma Aoba.  He’s a Dollar and an oddball who thinks nothing of breaking the ultimate school taboo by ratting out bullies to the teacher, but this is DRRR – you can bet his quirks run deeper than that.  The always outrageous twins give him a first day of school to remember, though Kuronoma takes it in stride to a fairly impressive degree.

One interesting element from this episode was Shinra’s fourth wall breaking – he (from the inside of Celty’s shadow ball) explains to the audience what was going on at the school, and why we were taking a trip back in time to further expound on it.  If this happened in the first series I don’t remember it – though that’s certainly far from impossible.  In terms of events themselves we’re seeing a very familiar DRRR formula – the red string of fate linking seemingly unrelated events in a long daisy chain, and a key MacGuffin this time is the ¥1000000 Celty lost during her latest flight from Kuzuhara, which has now been found by the Orihara twins.  Hijinks to follow.

Another hotspot to keep an eye on is Shingen’s interaction with this fellow, a face I don’t remember from the first season (and it’s a memorable one, too).  Shingen (it’s always a joy to hear Ohtsuka Akio in any role, large or small) is pretty much a lock to be involved in something dangerous and unsavory, and the tall dude is clearly trouble with a capital “T”.  Of the irrepressible Shizuo again we get only a brief glimpse, along with our first mention of Russia Sushi this season (with more to come next week).  Rather than try too hard to make sense of everything this early in the plot, I think it makes more sense to just sit back and let the DRRR wash over you, so that’s what I’ll do for the moment.

Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -7 Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -8 Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -9
Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -10 Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -11 Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -12
Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -13 Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -14 Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -15
Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -16 Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -17 Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -19
Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -20 Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -21 Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -22
Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -23 Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -24 Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -26
Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -27 Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -28 Durarara X2 Shou - 02 -29


  1. G

    I'm always amazed at the depth and skill of some of these voice actressees. Miyuki Sawashiro is one of my favorites. She plays male and female roles as well. Just look at a few of her characters:

    Celty on Durarara
    Caanan on Caanan
    Ultear on Fairy Tail
    Kurapika on HxH
    Ayane on Kimi Ni Todoke
    Shinkurou on Kure-Nai
    Ginko on Mushi-shi
    Shinku on Rosen Maiden
    Perrine Cloisterman on Strike Witches
    Shino on Sword Art Online
    Lag Seeing on Tegami Bachi
    Mutta (and Apo) on Uchuu Kyoudai
    Kotoha on Yozukora Quartet

    and thats only a few of her well known ones.

  2. R

    She's definitely a sought-after seiyuu — and a solid one, too — but I personally like Paku Romi a lot more. I guess it's unfair to compare the two, given that Paku-san is way more experienced.

  3. R

    You said it, Enzo. It feels like DRRR!! has become less appealing than it was, but I think it's me who has changed. This season is a little slim pickings, so I guess I will just stick around.

  4. s

    aw man, why does it always seem like the praises i make for series' come back to bite me in the ass. I praised psycho pass S2 for seemingly taking a more psychedelic approach to its storytelling, for it to then plummet into "meh" territory halfway through. I thought one of death billards' strengths was the ambiguity in it's storytelling, but then i ended up eating my words when the latest ep decided to break down it's premiere..bummer.

    Last week i praised this season of durarara for being a lot more seamless in telling it's narrative across many different characters, but then this ep in my opinion messed that up a tiny bit by breaking the forth wall so that it could clue its audience in on what was going on. Writers need to give their viewers more credit.

  5. T

    Maybe its because I'm an extremely picky person but I'm ok with the time shifts in durarara considering I don't watch much anime as most people do. (I chose my main ones to follow and I'm ok)
    Other than that its clear the new guy is probably a new character. I think he will be the guy bandaged up in the ED but I can be totally wrong. I already love the twin sisters and cannot wait to see them interact with their loveable older brother LOL

  6. R

    Sorry for bombard readers of this post. Enzo, my Safari can't find the server of LiA and therefore doesn't display. Don't know what happened — maybe Apple doesn't like talking to Google — but this is the second time in a month. I'm switching to Chrome to get to your page…just wanted you to know. Thanks.

  7. Well, it's working for me on Safari, but thanks for letting me know. Just another Blogger quirk, I would guess.

  8. R

    Thanks Enzo…it's now working fine, so I guess it's probably just me. Still don't know what happened…

  9. J

    You can always turn the question around – if this episode had aired in the first run of the adaptation, would they have felt the need to use the fourth-wall breaking framing device?

    Also, I get the feeling that Shingen being a previous owner of Saika (and retaining enough faculties to perform experiments with it) is much more important than the casual reveal in this episode belied. That and his connections to Anri's family obviously.

  10. H

    It's like it never went away. To be honest, I don't get (read:like) many of the characters but somehow the world in which they collectively inhibit is undeniably lively and magnetic.

    So far it does feel like characters are just waiting around for things to happen though. Correct me if I'm wrong, but Izaya hasn't gotten off his ass once. The lack of my main man Simon is being felt too.

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