To Heart 2

Title:To Heart 2
Keywords: , , , , , , , , , , ,
Notables: Original Concept - Aquaplus
Following her graduation from middle school, Yuzuhara Konomi enters the same high school as Kono Takaaki, her childhood friend, did one year earlier. As the new school year begins, they meet their childhood friend Kosaka Tamaki, as well as many new acquaintances. Unbeknownst to the group, their encounters with each other will soon lead to many memorable adventures.
(taken from ANN)

This is a "same setting" spinoff from To Heart with all-new characters and the events supposedly taking place two years after the original series (to which there are a handful of references).
[TV series, 2005, 13 TV +1 special episode, 24 min; based on the dating-sim game of the same title]
The "special episode" is considered to be "episode 11.5", with Konomi and Tamaki watching videos of the highlights from episodes 1-11 (including some events they weren't witnessing back then, so their reaction to these is quite interesting), thus introducing all relevant characters once more. Too spoilerish for watching earlier but more interesting than a mere recap, even more so at this crucial moment of the series (after the cliffhanger of episode 11).
Image: Yuzuhara Konomi (dark grey hair, 1st year), Sasamori Karin (yellow hair, 2rd year), Kosaka Tamaki (red hair, 3rd year), Kireinasora Ruuko (pink hair, 2rd year), Komaki Manaka (brown hair, 2rd year), Tonami Yuma (blue hair, 2rd year), Himeyuri Ruri & Himeyuri Sango (violet hair twins, 1st year).
1:36min Series Opening - YouTube Video
[edit] The ↗ToHeart franchise:

To Heart (original TV series): To Heart 2 (same setting, later in time):
Episode Details 
Kono, Tama, Kari, Sang, Mana, Lucy, Yuma, Chie, 1
OverallArtAnimationCharacter Design MusicSeries StoryEpisode StoryReviewer
Watch 8 7 5 6 5 6 Devil Doll [series:1149#752]
[Score: 58% = "Watch"; similar nice guy slice-of-life anime with no romance: Kono Aozora ni Yakusoku wo]
  • Drama: Low (nothing that a nice guy can't fix within a minute of encouragement)
  • Comedy: Med (not really slapstick but overly childish characters and embarrassing scenes galore)
  • Action: Low (bicycle accidents, paint ball guns)
  • SciFi: Low/Med (aliens, UFOs, androids - this is the To Heart universe after all)
  • Ecchi: Low (underwear shopping/teasing, repeatedly falling on top of each other)
This series will be a horrible disappointment for anyone who liked the original: While To Heart was a decent drama, this series is not. It might try to be a comedy, but it fails at this as well, and big time. In apparently sharp contrast to the makers of this show, I consider calumny and blackmail not funny, and certainly not the material a running gag throughout this show ought to be based upon. (This alone makes the series a failure in my eyes, and made me subtract 2 points from Series Story.) Same goes for girls kicking a boy in the nuts for no particular reason... not funny either. The humor of this thingy here is not exactly on par with Bokusatsu Tenshi Dokuro-chan but half-way through the show this anime was on the verge of getting an "Avoid" rating from me as well.

Kawaii girls and nice Art, emphasizing the Moé element of Konomi and reminding me of the visual appearance of the Myself; Yourself characters; most girls look like they're 12-year-olds, and that suits their behavior well (but: We're talking about high schoolers here!)
Animation of one slow motion scene during episode 1 was awful but the bicycle animation of episode 4 compensates for this by great detail, and the walking is okay. The OP song is almost a nursery rhyme, the ED a simple but nice piano ballad (Tomoshibi by Suara), nothing spectacular about the Music.

As for the Characters, Takaaki is another nice guy busy fixing everyone's little issues, Konomi is way too childish for entering high school (such as insisting to sleep in the same bed as Taka-kun after watching a scary movie) - she's acting like a grade schooler (and Sasamori Karin isn't any better, not to mention the horrible twins later), thus damaging my hopes for any romance in this series early on. Even Tama-nee, the older sister of Taka-kun's best friend Yuuji, is rolling around with the other "kids" on the floor (despite being in her graduation year of high school already) while later teasing her younger friends about underwear shopping... sigh. Komaki Manaka, the class rep, is the only character with at least some depth while her buddy Tonami Yuma is permanently and completely unnerving. And it doesn't exactly improve the situation that the least likable character has been chosen to play her arc in full detail from episode 8 on...
It's not like Konomi were inconsistent or boring as a character - it's just that the story lets her, Takaaki and Tama-nee all be high schoolers with just one year of age difference while they behave like being 12, 16 resp. 20 years old... and that's a coffin nail for any credible romance.

No actual Story, basically feature episodes for ever new characters, and not even a vague hint of romance. Despite certain embarrassing scenes, Ruko gave life to this series that could finally have found a real story to tell about her - but immediately afterwards they completely forget about her being a very special character and everyone just accepts her odd behavior... sigh. So nothing remains except for slice of life of a group of childhood friends reunited and attending the same school again (in three different age-groups). I particularly dislike the narration style: While the events related to several girls take place in an overlapping time frame they're not shown in parallel but the story starts over and over again, showing certain events from different perspectives according to increasing knowledge of the audience about the characters; to me this looks like someone mechanically glued together different arcs from the game with a minimum of effort.
And the course of events during the final episodes doesn't make the situation any better. Episode 11 ends with a great cliffhanger - but the trailer announces episode 11.5 as the next one, thus inserting a recap episode at this stage of the series. And when you got past this one and expect episode 12 to continue where episode 11 left you - wrong again, the whole cliffhanger is completely forgotten and they jump ahead to another character's situation... blah. And the ending smells like a sequel will be necessary in order to let anything of significance happen at all.

All in all a complete disaster after I gave both To Heart and To Heart ~Remember My Memories~ ratings at the "Buy"/"Rent" borderline. This sequel isn't offensive in any way that would justify an "Avoid" rating but as you read above there's a long list of reasons why it got a score that's 24 points lower than the one for the original series.

Last updated Wednesday, August 10 2011. Created Monday, March 10 2008.
Unevaluated AstroNerdBoy [series:1149#436]

Through 1 episode...

Like its predecessors, this series takes its time. There are a huge number of girls to be introduced and thus far, only one guy. However, 1st-year female student Konomi has taken the lead role as of the first episode. We'll see where this goes.

Last updated Saturday, October 08 2005. Created Saturday, October 08 2005.

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