The anime adaptation of Nanbaka was practically screaming for a sequel. Even though it is an urban comedy that sends up the tropes of the prison escape genre, much of its charm comes from its source material which is just overflowing with creativity. There are enough characters in this series to start their prison, so there isn’t even any need to be worried about running out.
Is season 2 successful on all fronts?
Yes and no, mostly no. It boils down to one question – do you want more Nanbaka or not? If yes, then congratulations! This show delivers what you’re looking for. A hulking high school girl who breaks boulders into gravel with her kicks, a psychotic doctor the fan service we expected of it? Well, that’s a loaded question, and you know why.
Episodes of Nanbaka Season 2:
Nanbaka season 2 takes place somewhere around episode 13 or 14 when the anime airs in real-time. This means that when you add up the total number of attacks from Nanbaka S1 + S2, it only comes up to 24, which is still unfinished at this point, meaning there’s still room for more content if they so desire. But considering how much stuff happened in just 14 episodes, I can’t imagine they’ll have enough material for anything beyond another cour without dragging out the pacing too much. This all boils down to that you can think of this as a long special episode (or OVA if you prefer) and get the most out of it.
There are two distinct versions of Nanbaka Season 2
The main problem is with how they chose to present this episode. As a special, the pacing is too fast for its sound. Currently, there are two different versions streamed on Crunchy-roll – an edited version that censors all the blood, insight and an uncensored version that does almost nothing for censorship standards compared to Netflix. This wouldn’t be so bad if not because 3 minutes are cut off from both versions, which end up being jarring because moments are missing during some scenes or transitioning into them abruptly. The best solution is watching it on Blu-ray, but even then, there’s only one disc available with the OVA on it.
Starting of Nanbaka Season 2
The episode starts with Jyugo trying to escape from prison with the help of his friends, but they’re stopped by Sukea, who happens to be visiting at the time and promptly beats them all up. Next thing we know, Nanba warden Hamazu’s assistant Nishino is teaching a class for new meat (boymeat?) where he meets Uno and tells him that he has no talent for picking locks. To make things worse, Terushima grabs hold of this opportunity to decide on Uno and defeat him in front of everyone else.
Season 2 of Nanbaka is a comedy series
This may sound like typical school shenanigans you’ve come to expect from anime like D-Frag or School Rumble but let me tell you, right now, this is NOTHING like those shows. The humor in Nanbaka is so over-the-top and cartoonist that it borders on parody, and if you’re looking for anything serious here, then you’ve come to the wrong place. Each scene has at least one gag (and usually more than one) that comes flying at you from almost every direction, making it hard to keep track of what’s going on most of the time but also preventing indifference.
If you haven’t seen it yet, I highly recommend checking out the show Bakumatsu Rock to get an idea of what’s in store for you. They’re both made by the same studio (Studio DEEN) and follow much of the same style in terms of pacing. You can consider this like Bakumatsu Rock, but with more characters running around at once, less plot development, better fan service.
Characters of Nanbaka Season 2:
If you’ve ever seen an anime that had the main character with multiple personalities, then this should feel right at home. It’s essentially the same thing, but instead of having one person (or animal) switch between different identities, it’s done through physical restraints like handcuffs and tattoos. The best part is that they aren’t just for show either – each identity has its unique abilities, which makes certain fights more dynamic than what you’re used to seeing in your typical action anime.
In terms of how they look, the characters are grouped into distinct categories by color to help you figure out who’s from a glance:
Uno is a blue guy wearing a school uniform.
Jyugo is a red guy wearing leather bondage gear.
Niko is a pink-haired girl with pigtails.
Momoko is an orange-haired cross-dresser.
Of course, there are other characters, but since they’re mostly just new meat, it’s hard to say much about them. With that said, I would like to mention one major flaw of the show, which ties into the characters.
Main Characters of Nanbaka Season 2
It has nothing to do with how they act or their design, only the names. Nanbaka doesn’t translate well at all, so you’ll find yourself quickly forgetting what specific character names sound like when they’re announced because you’ve never heard anything like it before in your life. It may not seem that bad on paper.