Anime Review: Shinryaku Ika Musume Season 2 Episode 2

Anime Review:
Shinryaku Ika Musume Season 2 Episode 2

What this is about: Watching all of the anime shows so you don’t have to! For more information about me and my reviews, click here for details on what I am reviewing.

Series Premise: Shinryaku Ika Musume, or “Invader Squid Girl”, is a weekly anime television series based on a comedy manga by Masahiro Anbe. The first 12-episode series aired during the Fall of 2010, and the second 12-episode season between September and December 2011. The story follows a young Squid Girl who is angered by humanity’s defiling the oceans, so she arrives on a beach one day to subjugate the human race. But she soon discovers she may have bitten off more than she can chew, and ends up working as a waitress in a small beach cafe as she continues to plan her eventual conquest.

Click on the thumbnails below to view the picture in full size in a new window:

Very Quick Episode Summary: Ika Musume visits elementary school and plays soccer, only to discover that, with the exception of her tentacles, she’s extremely clumsy. Nagisa and Ayumi dress up to attract more attention for the cafe, but end up attracting Ika Musume’s jealousy. Later, they discover Ika Musume has the power to change her weight at will.

My Impressions: Hey, hey! I am now finally getting around to reviewing the second episodes of all the shows from the Fall 2011 Television Season that received a “thumbs up” — let’s see what shows survive to the next round!

This is a season of “second seasons”. Not only do we have another batch of Shinryaku Ika Musume, but also another batch of Working!, as well as another round of Bakuman. If there is one thing that I’ve learned, it is that the “second seasons” are essentially no different from the first seasons. Well, not really “learned”, because I already knew that going into this little boondoggle; more like “reinforced” what I already knew.

So, if the second season of the same show is often nothing more than an extension of the first season — then it really boils down to a question of how much I liked the first season. With Working! and Bakuman, I was pretty “meh” with the first seasons, and likewise my opinion is pretty “meh” with the second season as well. But I considered Shinryaku Ika Musume the best comedy of 2010 (and in fact the 4th best series of the year overall). Hence, I an enjoying the second season as well.

To be clear, we are not covering any new ground here — the characters have the same quirks and foibles (and, alas, annoyances), the comedy remains light-weight and inconsequential, each episode is broken into three short episodes with a different joke or topic. There’s not really any continuity to speak of — just one throw-away joke after another.

And it all centers around the still-adorable-as-ever Ika Musume. She remains as haughty as they day we first met her (no waning in her enthusiasm or ego), but her experience, talent and skill remain…less than awe-inspiring. For example, even though she has mad skillz with her tentacles, that does not translate over to her hand-eye coordination, as we learn on the soccer pitch.

Shinryaku Ika Musume is never going to be knock-your-socks-off amazing, but as far as light entertainment goes, it hits the spot. Not every show has to be fraught with deep meaning or angst, after all. And perhaps most refreshing, it is one of the few shows out there that does not have to resort to inappropriate fan-service for attention. Yay! Frankly, I wish more shows would follow Shinryaku Ika Musume’s lead.

The verdict:

One more thing: Are we sure that she’s a Squid Girl…and not a cat? We learned that (through a twist of her bracelet), she can change her weight at will. And my immediate thought was, “Hey, that’s a cat’s ability!” After all, anyone who has ever owned a cat — and tried to pick one up when they don’t want to be picked up — will know that cats can seemingly change their density at will. Suddenly it seems like that eight pound ball of fur has turned into a floppy fifty pound sack of suet.


For more information:
  • My earlier reviews of the series:
  • Info resources:

    Sampling of Online Reviews:

    • “I know they picked much of the first season from some of the funnier moments of the manga, so I was slightly concerned that the second season wouldn’t be as good. But after watching the first two episodes, I’m no longer worried. Surely there were moments of discovery, such as the “umbrella” episode, that can’t be recreated, but now that she’s more familiar with land-based-life, Ika will surely have more opportunities to plan her invasion.” – Moe Monster
    • “Looks like last week was a bit of a false alarm – after this week, I can say with confidence that everyone’s favorite squid girl is truly back.” – Lost in America
    • “The jokes were hilarious, and strangely enough, worked out without being too repetitive or redundant. Seriously, if every episode turns out like this one, we’re in for one heck of a treat.” – Emory Anime Club
    • “So episode 2 wasn’t a total loss but I’m hoping they can rekindle some of that chemistry of the first season because right now, I feel that the current second season quality is such that I think I would have dropped it already if I hadn’t already watched the first season of Ika Musume in its entirety.” – No Name Anime Blog

      ROUND TWO (Second Episode) RESULTS FOR THE FALL 2011 SHOWS:

      Thumbs-up for Round Two: Un-Go, Chibi Devi, Bakuman Season 2, Mirai Nikki, Shinryaku Ika Musume Episode 2

      Thumbs-down for Round Two: Working Season 2

      Coming up next: Ben-To, Chihayafuru, Guilty Crown, Phi-Brain, Last Exile: Fam the Silver Wing, Fate Zero,Boku Ha Tomodachi ga Sukunai, Hunter x Hunter, Tamayura Hitotose, gdgd Fairies

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