Genre(s): Seinen, Supernatural, Ecchi, Psychological, Mystery
Age-Appropriateness: 17+ (Profanity, Violence, Sexual Themes, Nudity)
TheAwersome Rating: 5.2 / 10 (Uugggghh)
Premise: Koyomi Araragi wakes up one morning to find himself kidnapped and tied up by his girlfriend Hitagi Senjougahara. Having run afoul of Deishuu Kaiki, a swindler who conned Senjougahara’s family, she has taken it upon herself to imprison Araragi to keep him safe from the con man. But when Araragi gets a frantic message from his sister Karen, he learns that the fraud has set his sights on her.
TheAwersome’s Thoughts: First off, did you watch those final three episodes of Bakemonogatari? The ones on Amazon Prime? Because you need to. Basically, what happened was rather than compress the content of the original story in order to fit a single cour (12 episodes) the creator released them online. Then things got weird when releasing for streaming and DVDs, yada yada. Anyway, those were important.
I really did not like this one, not gonna lie. It’s basically Leonard the Kappa’s haven/playground, meaning there are obnoxiously obscene amounts of fan-service, but this time it’s almost exclusively with girls under the age of 15! Including the protagonist’s sisters! So buckle your seat belt, Lolicon, because you’re going to jail. Oh but wait, the vampire girl is technically 400+ years old, she only LOOKS like a nine-year old so it’s legal. *Barfs*.
The psychological dialogue isn’t as good this season as it was last, and Inu Curry isn’t around for cool trippy visuals, it’s just Shaft. Which do a decent job, but it just isn’t the same. Don’t get me wrong, there are some truly fascinating conversations and philosophical conundrums, but it wasn’t as artfully done. Oh and Araragi is like, 25x as pervy in this season than the first?
TLDR: Too much inexcusable uncomfortable fan-service (read borderline illegal) to make the neat dialogue worth it.
“Nisemono” means “fake” or “false” in a noun sense, so Nisemonogatari can be translated as “Fake Tale,” or “Story about a Faker/Phony,” etc., as that’s the overarching theme of this season.
CHRONOLOGY: Nisemonogatari takes place immediately after the events of Bakemonogatari.
As much as it pains me to say it, Nisemonogatari can’t just be skipped; it sets the stage for a lot of the rest of the series. What bothers me about Nise isn’t so much that there is ecchi content (if we’re talking quantity and potency, Kill la Kill and Food Wars have more) but rather how needless and un-addressed it is.
Kill la Kill presents it in its satirical, parody fashion as a major theme of the overarching story, and Food Wars presents it in a metaphorical sense. In both cases, it adds to or is an integral part of what makes the show. For Nisemonogatari, it’s just there. It feels entirely separate. Basically, if you can make a “CleanFlix” edit without harming the artistic integrity of the piece, then what’s being edited out was unnecessary to begin with.
That, and because it’s paired with a primarily “psychological” show, it’s just a deluge of gasoline onto the dumpster fire of “Well ACSHTUALLYs” of the world that will come clamoring to defend it as artistically genius rather than just pure fan-service.