Danganronpa: The Animation: Episode 2 – “(Not) Normal Arc: Kill and Live”

Danganronpa: The Animation takes place at Hope’s Peak Academy, which is supposed to be a school for talented students. Makoto Naegi, the main character, won a special lottery to enroll in the school. Unfortunately, he and his 14 classmates soon discover the school is run by a psychotic teddy bear named Monokuma, and that he expects the students to live there forever. The only way they can “graduate” is by killing one of the students.

At the beginning of the episode, Sakaya Maizono comes to Makoto’s room, saying she heard someone shaking and rattling her door and was frightened. Makoto and Sakaya decide to swap rooms for the night. The next morning, Sakaya is found murdered in the shower room of Makoto’s room.

After they’re assembled in the gym, Monokuma announces there are “supplemental rules” in order to graduate: the killer must not let the other students find out that he is guilty, and a class trial will be held to assess a murder within a set period of time after each and every homicide. If the guilty party is chosen correctly, only the guilty party will be punished. However, if the wrong student is chosen, then all of the innocent people will be punished instead. It turns out the punishment is execution.

One of the girls in the group protests and says she won’t participate in the trials, and she also attacks Monokuma (which is against the rules). Monokuma summons spears to attack the girl, and she dies.

When information is provided to the remaining 12 students on Sakaya’s murder, everyone seems to believe that Makoto is guilty, since she was found in his room. After a brief investigation, Monokuma summons everyone to the trial, and the episode ends as they’re heading to the first class trial.

OK, I thought the original premise was a little “out there,” but I was willing to give this series another chance. Unfortunately, with this episode, the premise only got stranger. And it didn’t help that one of the two characters I knew and somewhat cared about was killed off in Episode Two. While I kind of care about Makoto, I don’t think I really care enough to continue watching this series to find out how he will manage to save himself from being declared guilty for Sakaya’s murder. Honestly, I don’t remember the name of the girl who was killed by Monokuma, and I really didn’t learn anyone else’s name over the course of this second episode. Because I know so little about these people, I really have no interest in continuing on with this series to find out what happens to these characters that I really don’t know much about.

At this point, I’m giving Danganronpa: The Animation a one-way ticket to Dropville. There’s really nothing here to keep my interest or make me want to watch any further. So long, Danganronpa: The Animation!

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