Anime Spotlight: Re: Hamatora

Re: Hamatora is the second season of the Hamatora television anime series. This season was produced by Lerche, and was directed by Seiji Kishi. The series aired on Japanese television from July 8-September 23, 2014.

As of this writing, Crunchyroll holds the North American streaming license for Re: Hamatora.

The world of Hamatora is set in Yokohama in 2014, and in the world of this franchise, humans with supernatural abilities have been discovered; they are referred to as Minimum Holders. Two Minimum Holders named Nice and Murasaki have formed a detective agency called Hamatora, and they rent out a table at the Nowhere Café and call it their office. Their friends, Birthday and Ratio, who are also Minimum Holders, are also part of the Hamatora team. Hajime, a friend of Nice’s, also hangs out at the café and tends to spend her time eating hamburgers.

Their friend Art works for the police department, and he has hired two Minimum Holders named Three and Honey to help him with a serial murder investigation where the murderer targets Minimum Holders.

At the end of the first season of Hamatora, it appeared that Nice had been purposely shot to death by Art. In the first episode of Re: Hamatora, there’s a memorial service held for him; at the end of the episode, though, it’s revealed that the audience had been trolled and that Nice was actually alive and was in hiding for three months.

Pretty quickly, it’s discovered that Minimum Holders are losing their powers and end up in really bad shape. It’s discovered that Art is behind it, and he appears to have become a rather twisted person. Over the course of the season, Art allies himself with a group known as Freemum. This group is made up of Minimum Holders who believe that they should be able to live free.

As this is going on, the members of Hamatora discover that they begin developing side effects when they use their Minimum abilities. This ends up tying in with a revelation that’s made about Hajime near the end of the series.

After watching the first episode, I felt that even though there was a more serious tone than there had been to the first season of Hamatora, the second season seemed to be a strong continuation for the series. I pretty much felt this way through Episode Five.

With Episode Six, though, the series started to become much more weird and dark than it had been. At that point, I had hoped that perhaps this would be the weirdest that the series would get. Unfortunately, the episodes continued becoming stranger and stranger for the remainder of the series.

In the end, I didn’t enjoy Re: Hamatora as much as I did the first season of Hamatora. Right at first, the darker and more serious tone of Re: Hamatora was a refreshing change of pace; however, as the season wore on, the storyline in Re: Hamatora just continued to become stranger and stranger. Ultimately, the two seasons of Hamatora were as different as night and day: the first season was more light-hearted with the occasional serious moment, while the second season was more serious with the occasional light-hearted moment early on. But by the end of Re: Hamatora, any light-heartedness was basically gone.

During the ending credits for Episode 12, there’s a television report showing that remnants of the Freemums are still creating unrest six months later. Before seeing that report, I was sure that this episode would wrap up the Hamatora franchise; however, seeing that tidbit in the ending credits does leave the door open for a potential third season. However, after how this season went, I’m not sure I’d be in a big hurry to come back if there ended up being a third season. I’d probably watch another season if I had an opening in my anime viewing schedule and couldn’t find anything else to watch.

In the end, Re: Hamatora did present some interesting concepts, but I’m not convinced that the execution of those concepts worked as well as they could have.

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