Minami TakahashiEmiri KatoYuko GotoTomomi Mineuchi
Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid (season 2)
Episode 1 also reviewed here: Anime 1st episodes 2021: M
Also known as: Kobayashi-san Chi no Maid Dragon S
Medium: TV, series
Year: 2021
Director: Yasuhiro Takemoto, Tatsuya Ishihara
Writer: Yuka Yamada
Original creator: Coolkyoushinja
Actor: Daisuke Ono, Emiri Kato, Hiro Shimono, Kaori Ishihara, Maria Naganawa, Minami Takahashi, Mutsumi Tamura, Tomomi Mineuchi, Yuichi Nakamura, Yuki Kuwahara, Yuki Takada, Yuko Goto
Keywords: anime, fantasy
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Format: 12 episodes + a 13th OVA
Url: http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/anime.php?id=23562
Website category: Anime 2021
Review date: 16 March 2024
Kobayashi-san chi no Maid Dragon
This was Kyoto Animation's first major project since the 2019 arson attack. Furthermore, the director of this show's first season, Yasuhiro Takemoto, died in that fire. (He'd been almost exactly my age. When I was born, he was two months old.)
This isn't a show about that, though. It's a happy, loving, good-natured show about dragons who've decided to settle down in our human world and not destroy it. They can take human form. They can do pretty much anything, in fact, up to and including "turn back time" and "talk to God". One of them is an Aztec god herself, in fact. What they do most of the time, though, is hang out, argue, play computer games, get an office job or whatever other everyday role they think would be suitable.
Mostly, this year is more of what we had in Season 1. Serious storylines are rare. A new character arrives at the beginning (Iruru) and takes a couple of episodes to get over her issues. The show also gets almost heavy in the last couple of episodes, with Kobayashi and Tohru asking surprisingly deep questions about each other and their relationship. (We also learn more of Tohru's backstory. Ouch.) Mostly, though, the show's fun. No one's in any danger. (Any one dragon could trash an entire country without pausing for breath and the whole gang put together could probably stop World War Three.) Instead, these are just fun, charming little stories about the characters and their lives.
That said, though, there's character development and some surprises. Quetzalcoatl (Lucoa) used to be an airhead who didn't understand the effect of her gag boobs and dress sense, but this year she's quietly become the most intelligent member of the gang. She is thousands of years old, after all. Tohru's character development is what the season finale's built around (although she'll always be loudly in love with Kobayashi).
And then there's Elma. She's always been the only dragon without a human partner, despite being the only Harmony-aligned dragon who believes in peace, not war. Tohru has Kobayashi, Lucoa has Shouta, Fafnir has Takiya, Kanna has Saikawa and Iruru will have Taketo Aida. Elma, though, is stubbornly and permanently alone... but she used to have Tohru. They're always fighting. They've tried to kill each other. In the past, though, they spent a while travelling together and they have a closer relationship with better mutual understanding than any of the other dragons. It's just that they disagree on pretty much everything and belong to dragon factions who were on opposite sides in the war.
It would be possible to get sniffy about the show's boobs and sexuality jokes. Every adult female dragon has a buxom human form, starting with Elma (big) and escalating to Tohru (huge), Lucoa (outrageous) and now also Iruru (genuinely absurd). There are also gags about sexual attraction with children. Saikawa (at primary school) practically has orgasms if Kanna so much as holds her hand, while Shouta (also at primary school) kept trying to get Lucoa to be a bit more age-appropriate around him. Personally, I think it's all on the harmlessly inoffensive side of silly, but I wouldn't argue with anyone who disagreed.
It's a lovely show. It's evolved a bit since last year, being less a "fish out of water" series and more a bunch of offbeat character studies, but that's not a bad thing. It's a logical direction for the story's evolution. The dragons are getting used to our world. I liked Elma's campaign in ep.9 to improve her company's working hours, for instance. She's right! Kobayashi clearly works insane levels of overtime and it's very Japanese for all her human colleagues to shrug that off. Oh, and Shouta's dad is scary. (Happy, friendly and reasonable, but yikes. He's a magician with alarming connections and a smile that never, ever disappears.)
Definitely recommended. Season 1 was one of anime's biggest successes from the last few years and Season 2 isn't letting the side down at all.