By: Hannah Ortiz
In preparation for Mob Psycho 100 III , which will arrive sometime in 2022, one can’t help but reflect on Mob Psycho 100 II. We’ve all heard it before: the sequel is worse than the original. Well, I’m glad to say this isn’t the case for Mob Psycho 100 II.
While I do have an issue with this season, I can’t deny that it made me think, laugh, and cry. I can’t stop thinking about Mob saying, “I am the protagonist of my own life.” I can’t stop thinking about Reigen’s struggle to feel important and appreciated—it’s real, relatable, heartfelt. I can’t stop thinking about how much this season developed on what was already built in the first one. They fit together like puzzle pieces.
I disagree with the perspective that the season lacks levity, but I do understand where that idea comes from. This season is definitely less lighthearted than the last, but there are still moments of comic relief with Reigen, Ekubo, and the press conference arc.
However, the arcs in this season can get so dark. I actually see this as a good thing; Mob is not the same kid from the last season. His mentality has changed, and he fears losing the support system that he’s worked so hard to build and maintain. This fear is difficult to face and one that we face every day. Of course, nothing about this fear is lighthearted.
It makes sense for things to grow darker and change. Mob is older and he’s seen so much. The story in this season seems much more purposeful. This season provides the comforts of a slice of life anime, with plotlines surrounding a marathon, Tsubomi, Reigen, and the Body Improvement Club. These all culminate into the end of the series and tie together perfectly. Mob draws his strength from his successes and failures, of which were detailed throughout the story in this season.
I’ve previously criticized the story in Mob Psycho 100, and its “sister” anime, One Punch Man, for being too lackadaisical. Last season, it seemed like there were a few random introductory episodes before the Claw arc. This season, the arcs intentionally fall after each other and come together perfectly.
Speaking of “perfect,” my biggest issue with this series is that I feel that the story ties together too neatly in the end. The characters faced injuries that I feel would kill them or severely damage them. Even citizens should be crushed by the fallout, but there is no detailing of actual death in this series, and it doesn’t make much sense to me. I understand Mob is a middle schooler and so death would SEVERELY damage him. But I don’t like how this series evades permanent damage.
I feel like I enjoyed the art more in this series than in the last. The same techniques are utilized and the art style is consistent. With a few exceptions, I really loved how the anime looked. The scenes were vivid, especially during the battles. The last two episodes are beautiful; you can see the effort that the artists put into the series, at designing and arranging characters in beautiful and unique ways.
In terms of the opening sequence, I feel as though it fell flat compared to the previous season’s opening sequence. The clips were a little too scattered and didn’t build off each other, unlike the opening sequence in the first season.
The soundtrack in this series fit perfectly with what was transpiring on screen, and the song in the opening sequence was pleasant to hear.
This series excelled at character development. Mob, Reigen, Shou, and Serizawa heavily developed, and Ritsu, Ekubo, and Teru didn’t fade into the background either. The characters changed last season and it was evident in this one, which I enjoyed.
Mob Psycho 100 II is a perfect companion to Mob Psycho 100. It takes weaknesses—like the story—and transforms them into strengths. The series is funny, thoughtful, and consuming. There is so much intention in this, so much work.
People who don’t want to watch this series because of its alternative style are making a mistake. There are so many great things about Mob Psycho 100, and it’s unfortunate that people are missing out on it. Overall, Mob Psycho 100 II is a great installment in the franchise, and I am excited to see what happens in Mob Psycho 100 III (and I will continue to love Reigen Arataka until the end of time).
About the author:
Hannah Ortiz is a communication student at UMass Boston. Her favorite television series is Sherlock, but she likes series with dark themes, such as Fargo and You. She enjoys reality television as well. Mob Psycho 100 is her favorite anime series; she also likes One Punch Man, Death Parade, and No. 6. In her spare time, she likes to read and write. She enjoys milkshakes which includes making and drinking them, trying different kinds at different restaurants, and cataloging the ones she’s had.