Koukaku Kidoutai S.A.C. 2nd GIG

Title:Koukaku Kidoutai S.A.C. 2nd GIG
Ghost In The Shell S.A.C. 2nd GIG
攻殻機動隊 S.A.C. 2nd GIG
Keywords: , , , , , , , , , ,
Notables: Animation - Production I.G.
Music - KANNO Yoko
OSHII Mamoru
Original Concept - MASAMUNE Shirow
R1 License - Manga Entertainment
The laughing man Stand Alone Complex is over. The team has been shattered and reborn under the control of the new female Prime Minister Kayabuki. Motoko and crew now have to deal with a new threat called the Individual 11, a terrorist organization that seems to be fighting for the rights of a batch of refugees coming from the mainland.

This series focuses on events just after GITS SAC. While the Individual 11 is the primary target (Like the Laughing Man) we also learn about the pasts of Motoko and crew including some background on the Tachikomas.

[TV series, 2004, 26 episodes, 24 min; produced by Production I.G.]
1:27min Series Opening - YouTube Video
[edit] The ↗Ghost in the Shell franchise:
Episode Details 
01, 02, 03, 04, 05, 06, 07, 08, 09, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26
OverallArtAnimationCharacter Design MusicSeries StoryEpisode StoryReviewer
Buy 10 10 9 9 9 9 Ggultra2764 [series:944#1552]
Continuing off from the first season, Ghost in the Shell 2nd GIG effectively makes itself into a political thriller series where what comes across at first sight as Section 9 trying to halt terrorist activity turns into an elaborate political conspiracy that once again pushes Section 9 to its limit in trying to halt. Much like the first season, 2nd GIG explores what appears to be a typical case for Section 9 to get involved in. But as they uncover more holes in facts being shown on the surface with said case, they become entangled in something much bigger than originally anticipated. In this case, the situation uncovered by Section 9 slowly develops to involve multiple factions trying to push events for their own cause resulting in things getting increasingly chaotic as events press on throughout the series thus creating an intense political situation offering enough to keep you hooked on the developments and tensions from start to finish. I've heard of some folks criticizing the plot developments being too complex to follow and considering it a negative. But with the build up of the mounting situation and how it eventually escalates, I'd say the complex developments were more than welcome as it showed just how messy the tensions between factions within this season of Ghost in the Shell would ignite as they continued to be left unresolved.

Much like the first season, characterization isn't the prominent focus of Ghost in the Shell. However it does provide some interesting fleshing out of Motoko and a few members of Section 9 in the show's filler episodes. In particular, what is revealed about Motoko's past becomes connected to the tense plot developments building up when she uncovers some shocking information on one of the main foes being targeted in this season. Said major foe also gets better fleshed out compared to The Laughing Man from the first season. The Tachikomas are also shown to become more sentient throughout this season as well, also playing a major role in the tensions that escalate towards the second half of this series. Other than that, 2nd GIG still tends to downplay characterization with some characters in Section 9 hardly being fleshed out thus leaving the viewer to care more about being hooked on the plot than characters as a whole.

Ghost in the Shell SAC: 2nd GIG still retains the high-quality production values that it had from the first season. The show features a great blending of CG and cel-shaded animation that immerse together almost seamlessly. Animation tends to move at a very fluid pace with the highlights for it being scenes where characters move about in the world of the Net and while not as plentiful as the last season, action scenes. Plenty of detail was put into the design of scenery, character designs and the CG renderings of robotic tanks like the Tachikoma. Once again, Yoko Kanno lends her music composing talents to the series featuring a great quality soundtrack where musical tracks fit in perfectly with the tense situations that develop throughout 2nd GIG.

Retaining the excellent production values of the first season combined with an addicting political thriller style plot that further escalates as events progress, Ghost in the Shell 2nd GIG proved to be quite the worthwhile watch for me and I hope to get similar enjoyment out of seeing the Solid State Society movie when I get a chance to see it at some point.

Last updated Thursday, June 09 2011. Created Thursday, June 09 2011.
Buy 8 10 9 9 9 9 Silence [series:944#2939]
A sparkling gem, with maturity of thought clearly shining through. Well, it could be a blessing that this is so deeply enrooted in the cyberpunk genre which takes many disturbing facts of today's society and extends their impacts to the future. While this is not the main theme of the anime, but the very realistic and intricate background work makes it very condusive to suspend disbelief and immerse oneself into the series. Furthermore, the backdrop is easily a social commentry which we can all do well to notice. But sadly, like Kuze said, people only absorb what they feel comfortable knowing, and ignore the rest.

Firstly, the mainstream media in this series is portrayed to be very manipulative of people's opinion (read media blackouts, and how it is commented that no one needs to know about the nuke in the final episode). This is very true of today, and if things continue on the way it is, the media should still be the same manufacturer of consent in the future. I will not elaborate on this as it is just a backdrop of the story, but if you are interested, just search for websites which corrects media bias and you can see for yourselves how the mainstream media today is skewed in this reporting. The politics is also rather prominent, and very maturely presented. Power struggles are evident, and the way Aramaki deals with the government is very reflective of real life as well. Without some knowledge of these areas, I believe one will miss out a large part of the message from the series, and to enjoy this series to the max, one needs to read up on this. (Oh, and the Tachikomas pulled out Richard Dawkins' The Selfish Gene in an early episode. Talk about a well read mangaka! I bet you don't know what that is.)

These are two main reasons I gave the series story a 9, even though the ending is somewhat anticlimatic, and did not really "pierce my heart", figuratively speaking. With that said, excitement was abound in the series, and kept me glued to the screen. The action is realistic and cool. We are kept guessing just how far Gouda had planned (it becomes evident quite early that he is the main antagonist), and how our heroes and heroines are going solve the problem. Perhaps because of the excellent build-up, the somewhat convenient solution does not live up to my expectations. I would not call it bad per se, but it just does not feel inevitable due to careful planning, deductions, and correct decision making. Major and her team basically just rolled over and said, nuke me! Very uncharacteristic of them.

Character wise, other than the last bit of let down, it was fantastic. The Saito episode blew me away, while the revelation of Major's past was a major boon. Also, we get a glimpse into the life of the shrewd Aramaki, seeing his brother and some of his friends. Pazu episode did not strike me as very good though.

The overall excellence of this series is a major plus. While I guess there is nothing that really blew me off my seat, there is little to critisize about the story other than the ending. Such an anime shining with realism and maturity is really a tough find. Much like its first season, I believe this will be one of my favorites for a long time.

Last updated Wednesday, September 23 2009. Created Wednesday, September 23 2009.
Rent Forbin [series:944#1573]
All R1 Episodes Watched
Drama : High
Action : High
Comedy : Low
SciFi : Low
Ecchi : Low/Med (A Motoko FS Scene!)
Ok 1st Gig had me at the edge of my seat. The 2nd gig had me watching. The Laughing Man was a good plot point that went all over the episodes. The Individual 11 was sorta a pointless plot that honestly was the most complicated plot to do one simple thing. Now that it was over (and I am PISSED at the ending), it was nothing. There was nothing in it that lasted in me now that it is over. It's a good show but 1st Gig was definitely a superior product.

What Did I like about it?
  • The Tachikoma's: They are more intelligent and are able to make their own decisions.
  • Mokoto's backstory: It was just lovely. It was a filler episode but I did want to know her backstory.
What Did I hate about it?
  • The whole plot. It was a waste of time.
  • What happened to most of the people at the end. Waste of time.
  • There is no way Kuze could keep in touch with all those people at once.
  • The EMP generator should've shut down a lot more than just the cyberbrains.
  • The whole sub plot with the other nuclear bomb. That was a waste of time.
What was the most memorable scene?
  • Motoko talking to the lady about the car with the 2 children in it.
FYI for those of you who watch Planetes. The Lunarian is the voice for Batou's personal Tachikoma.

So it ends up a low rent. The exact reason why I don't watch non comedies. It ticks me off when they end it this way.

Last updated Sunday, September 17 2006. Created Thursday, August 31 2006.
Rent 9 10 7 7 8 8 Devil Doll [series:944#752]
[Score: 78% = Rent; Episode ratings: 5-10-9-9-8-8-7-8-4-10-6-10-3-10-8-8-7-4-6-8-10-8-9-9-9-6. Recommended SciFi/Mecha animes: Shin Seiki Evangelion, Uchuu no Stellvia, Koukaku Kidoutai STAND ALONE COMPLEX]

The best thing about the prequel had been the "Laughing Man" storyline; we'll see whether the "Individual Eleven" will be as interesting. While the prequel had one main antagonist this 2nd Gig has two of them, offering more mystery and a more complicated (yet not more complex) plot.
In terms of Art and Animation this series keeps the high standards of its prequel. While I loved "Inner Universe" I hate the OP of 2nd Gig and consider the ED merely boring, thus I fast-forward through the OP & ED sequences of each episode, thus downgrading the otherwise decent Music (most notably during the suspense scenes) to a lower grade.
There are several Story elements that I dislike, including the clichéd "good guy with beautiful face, bad guy with ugly face" (although the idea is explained in epic length), the subplot of Kusanagi's first love (no, I didn't like that, so Characters doesn't get a higher rating than in the 1st Gig even though the sniper's solo episode was the highlight of this series for me - my favourite character of this series is Kayabuki), and the silly Tachikoma omakes (which are less related to the current episode than they were in the prequel and contrast too sharply from the overall pessimistic/depressing atmosphere of this series; they're not what I want to see a few seconds after a shocking episode ending which this series will provide every now and then).
Most of the first 8 episodes are good at least, building up the scenario for this series. But during the middle part there are three very weak episodes (9, 13 and 18) with three episodes (10, 12 and 14) being exceptionally good. So this series became a mixed bag - you never know what's next, great suspense or "major nonsense" (and yes, that's a pun).
What's good about the 2nd Gig is that it's less episodic in nature and less violent, putting more focus on political aspects. The creators make good use of the parallel plots as to make certain problems more plausible (like Section 9 being short on people for their actual task). Unfortunately I consider the final episode rather weak (everything falls apart without any particular reason - the mastermind had so many chances to win but couldn't make use of any of them), destroying a lot of the tension that has been built up before. In the end, GITS SAC had the far better story - but 2nd GiG still has a number of outstanding episodes that reward a high "Rent" rating. Given that the effect of this series is based on the performance in detail rather than on the main story (whose ending is obvious anyway), the rewatchability should be pretty high.

Last updated Friday, June 06 2008. Created Monday, August 14 2006.
Unevaluated Jan-Chan [series:944#967]
continuation of the first season, currently being fansubbed. More later.

Last updated Tuesday, February 01 2005. Created Saturday, January 22 2005.

Other Sites
Official Series Web Site http://www.production-ig.co.jp/anime/gits4/

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