Final Thoughts: Re:␣Hamatora

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Weird. That about sums it up. It’s convoluted, far-fetched and almost nonsensical. It takes so many liberties with the last two episodes that I don’t even know how I feel about it anymore. I held off on writing a Final Thoughts for the first season because I had no idea how to interpret it. And then the beginning of this second season almost drove me off the wall. But now that I’m done with it, I’ll admit I had a good time.

To quote all the way back from my First Impressions review for the first season: “It’s better than mediocre, and I like it.”

Everything that happens in Re:␣Hamatora is extremely predictable. Beyond little details like characters’ individual powers, I don’t believe a single plot twist surprised me. For the most part, though, these cliches are portrayed and executed fairly well. Like I said earlier, it’s nothing special, but it doesn’t really try to be. It’s complex without going out of its way to be complex, and though it’s suspenseful it’s not particularly surprising.

One thing that should be a criticism and yet somehow I’m not feeling particularly critical about is the antagonists. The first season’s villain, Moral, believed that everyone needed to be “saved” through equality, and so worked to give Minimum abilities to non-Minimum users to even the playing field. Then in the second season, Art tries to eradicate Minimum abilities and with them the damaging egos that ultimately cause people to hurt one another. It’s fairly interesting that Hamatora decided to visit both extremes on the issue, and in doing so takes two rather generic villain archetypes and makes them work.

There are a couple of plot holes that really come to light in the whole Let’s Explore the Past flashback sequences throughout Re:␣Hamatora. Maybe I’m missing something, but this is what I see:

  • Master worked as a researcher at the Minimum Agency alongside Moral. So:
    • He should have understood Moral and Moral’s threat in season one
    • He should have seen the potential of Moral using Skill’s Minimum
    • He knows Skill’s Minimum (heart) is inside Nice
    • He knows what Hajime can do, and the threat she unconsciously poses
    • He knows about the failed test subjects of Skill’s Minimum, but doesn’t do anything
  • If Moral had Skill’s heart, why did he put it in Nice instead of just using that Minimum to fulfil his purposes?
  • How did Hajime’s Minimum not cancel out Skill’s Minimum? On two separate occasions!

That’s about all the beef I have.

Let’s go through the ending just for fun: Art gets a total of six months jail time for his actions, at the conclusion of which he is released and is immediately buddy-buddy again with everyone else. It’s a fairly cathartic ending, and I can make my peace with it. All that means is that Nice and co. retroactively understand what Art was trying to do and why, and with that knowledge they forgive him and become friends again. Art is presumably less homicidal now, and in theory the problems posed by Hajime’s Minimum have been eradicated.

Also, I believe Art is immortal so long as Nice is alive, since even if he forcibly removes his Minimum then Skill’s Minimum will automatically activate and give it back. Even after Nice eventually passes away in the far future, presumably so long as Art doesn’t remove his Minimum he will stay immortal. I guess that’s pretty cool.

Let’s talk production aspects for a bit. Visuals are basically the same as the first season: crisp and colorful art, generic yet likeable character designs, cool psychedelic effects and decent animation. Sound is similar; the voice actors are good, the background music is fine, and sound effects work well enough. For this second season, I very much liked the OP, but didn’t care as much for the ED.

Like I said, it’s nothing special, but it’s simple fun. It balanced plot and character development with comedy, and though the package was occasionally a little awkward it somehow managed to never lose focus. I’d recommend it to people, even if just as an aside for a long weekend somewhere down the line.

Final MAL score is a 6.7/10 rounded to 7/10.

Rick out.

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