Series Recommendation: Muv-Luv Alternative season 2

I will change the world and save everyone…

After a lackluster season 1, Muv-Luv Alternative pushed on with the 2nd season, this time reaching another climactic battle in the story. As a visual novel, Alternative focused most of its battle towards the end of the Visual Novel, so the studio has been pushing the story as fast as possible to reach those epic battles. And season 2 delivered just that – a season with enough build-up until an explosive climactic battle.

Season 2 continued from the Coup Incident from Season 1. Now that Flight 207B have earned their wings, they have officially been commissioned as active duty TSF pilots. Takeru was brimming with hope about saving the world. However, reality isn’t like a game. Disaster struck right when they least expected it, and our protagonist sunk to the depths of despair. Now, he has to overcome a dimensional curse to save his world, or rather, worlds. The continuation of a journey smeared with despair as Takeru fought his way to reach his last hope.

+ Plot: ¬†Just like season 1, this season contains a lot of build-up necessary to deliver the climax. In the original visual novel, there were a lot of events and details that contributed to the character’s development, especially Takeru. The anime couldn’t afford to include all of them, but they did include the main ones. However, without some smaller parts, the main plot wouldn’t be as emotional and effective as the author intended. That is one of the biggest challenges for adapting the Muv-Luv Alternative, as we mentioned here. The staff managed to cover the main points and was able to create a linear story that capped off appropriately with a very satisfying climax. While not perfect, they have done their best.

+ Animation: While they still keep the art style from season 1, season 2 has done significantly better with fewer animation errors and overall better animation for the 2D characters. There are still some obvious smear frames, but that’s not an issue at all since they don’t occur in key moments. The 3D animation is still phenomenal, perhaps even much better than season 1 due to the battles in season 2 happening in the day and not at night. We can see much clearer how the TSF moves, and of course, we finally have a grand battle against the BETA. The graphics did a really good job with the TSF, even adding minuscule details that only hardcore fans can notice. Overall, I give a solid 9/10 on this aspect.

+ Mecha Design: For the TSF, pretty much all the models we see in season 2 have already been shown in season 1. You can see the chonky F-4J Gekishin, the blocky F-15 Eagle, the Obari-inspired Shiranui, and last but not least, the edgy Takemikazuchi. But there is also one addition that you didn’t get to see. And that is the key mech for this season: the Susanoo. Without going into much detail, imagine a Dendrobium from Gundam mixed with the Andromeda from Yamato. It is a weapon platform that will surely wow you when you see it on-screen.

+ Music: They pulled out all the stops for this season – probably because this is basically their Hail Mary. They might not get to do another season, so they put all they had in season 2. With the spectacular return of Jam Project and Minami Kuribayashi, MLA season 2 has brought back the original artists from the Visual Novel. The new opening “Akatsuki wo Ute” is an absolutely epic song that hits really hard in the latter episode (actually better than Getter Arc’s OP). The ending ‘Saikai’ from V.W.P. delivers an emotional send-off at the end of each episode, and it fits very well, considering the amount of “drama” we got in this season. Most importantly, they were able to include a very crucial insert song that serves as the ultimate fan service for the veteran Muv-Luv fans – ‘Wings’. Evan Call once again showed us why he is the perfect choice for any Muv OST with a stellar set of OSTs.

+ Conclusion: Overall, Muv-Luv Alternative season 2 did a much better job than season 1 in terms of cohesivity in the story, animation quality as well as OST. There are still some major problems with the anime as it leaves a lot to be desired from the source material, and the highs it hits are not as impactful as the VN. However, for people who aren’t too well-versed in the franchise, the series managed to spark some interest for them to check out the rest of the story. Of course, season 2 concluded at pretty much the halfway point of the Alternative story, much like how they adapt “Total Eclipse”, so there is still a lot of story to be told. But as a stand-alone, Muv-Luv Alternative anime is the ultimate TSF experience if you want to witness what TSFs can do and how brutal it is in the BETA War. If anything, the anime is a great complementary to the Visual Novel as it provides a more vivid graphical experience.

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