When the first season of “Medaka Box” came out, I really like the tales of this rather extraordinary girl believing that she could help all people, despite how craven or churlish or selfish they were to begin with. I got a bit concerned regarding the season-ending arc with Unzen (he’s the runty white-haired guy with the evil grin at the far right), but the promise of the second season seemed bright. Promises, I guess, are meant to be broken, and “Medaka Box: Abnormal” makes sure there aren’t any pieces to pick up.
At the Sandbox Academy, there is the mysterious Class 13, which is filled with Abnormals: people with very special abilities. With Unzen in hospital for a while, there is a vacancy in the class (man, what a tough school) and Abnormals who haven’t attended class since the Hiroshima Carp last won the World Series decide to show up and help push forth the Flask Plan. This is a plan to create the perfect human being (yeah, we all know where that ends up. Hasn’t succeeded before, won’t succeed now. PS, the Carp went 61-71 last season).
In order to put a stop to this, (uh, the Flask Plan, not the Carp) Medaka and Crew (the three in the lower left) seek out advice from Meguro Kurakami, Medaka’s…..older brother? Why hasn’t he made an appearance before this? (Blue hair, upper left). Aside from learning of the existence of an older brother (who is a major pervert and has a sister fixation), we also learn that he was an early administrator of the Flask Plan, but no longer believes in it, so left it all behind.
They will have to penetrate the building at the center of the campus, go down to the 13th level and defeat the person there to stop the plan. So, everything that made the first season charming and funny and amusing has been completely jettisoned for the Dragonball Z Syndrome (endless fighting, when there isn’t endless fighting). And the fights are both endless and rather tepid as they have to deal with a person who moves at supersonic speed or another who can pull weaponry from anywhere on his body or a girl who can beat the snot out of you and can heal quickly (the last one is our inverted miss in the center bottom).
We also learn that Medaka has a sister as well. And who else will be coming to this soiree? And how inter-related is everyone to everyone? Is it too late to transfer out to another school? Oh, the sister is Kujira and she is that heavily wrapped person to the right of Medaka…and the unwrapped person next to the wrapped one. And, yes, that is a Rambo-style knife sticking out of her head. She is also just as buxom as her sister, but colder than a penguin’s rear in winter.
Yup, we learn more about what makes Medaka Medaka, but we are no closer to shutting down the Flask Plan, even when Medaka defeats everyone (no, not a spoiler alert; we ALL saw that coming.) The big shock came when the close of the second season actually sets up the third season and a showdown with her most vicious foe ever…whom I cannot reveal as that is the kicker. This is really an 11-episode run, with the 12th episode as a bridge piece to take us up into Season Three and explain a bit of this particular character, so we understand where that person is coming from, more or less.
All of these feints and fake-outs and posturing made for a very tiresome series and I have an incredible reluctance to attempt the next go-around. And if I see one more extreme close-up of angry eyes, I’m gonna lose it, if I haven’t already. This would be a great day to play hooky.
On a scale of 1 to 10:
Artwork 8 (Interesting character design)
Plot 6 (Gets overworked quickly)
Pacing 8 (Good pacing but it goes nowhere)
Effectiveness 4 (Too many port convolutions)
Conclusion 4 (It gets to a coupler point)
Fan Service 3 (A similar show would be “Wedding Peach”)
Overall 5 (The fight continues)
And remember, it’s first run until you see it. What is normal, anyway?