The second cour of 86-Eighty Six started on Saturday and gave us everything we could’ve hoped for. The episode gave fans perfectly adapted light novel scenes along with a bunch of new characters. We even received a new jaw-dropping opening theme to cap off what was undoubtedly a flawless episode.
New Opening Theme
One of the best parts about the start of cour two was the opening theme. With stunning hues of red and blue, compiled with gorgeous animations and visuals, the new 86-Eighty Six opening theme is easily one of this year’s best. Have a look for yourself!
The beginning is layered with macabre imagery of the Republic. Then it builds up to a magnificent display of a battlefield with soothing light and vibrant colors giving a sense of comfort mixed with adrenaline. Combine that together with the wonderful music of amazarashi, a lot of new characters, and some heavy metaphors and foreshadowing, the new opening theme truly ended the new episode perfectly.
Perfect Adaptation Continues
Cour two is currently adapting volume two of the 86-Eighty Six light novel series. The only thing the anime changed during Saturday’s episode was putting events in more chronological order. Episode 12 (start of cour two) adapted the prologue and chapter two of the second light novel volume and did a perfect job of doing so, even adding in an anime original scene. The flow was nice and level and no single character overshadowed others for a prolonged period of time.
The episode answered a lot of questions as to where it left off when the first cour ended and the situations everyone is currently in. Lena is still in the Republic as a handler. Shin and the Spearhead Squadron are in Giad. Everything is becoming established and the contrast between the two is clear as day.
The most standout aspect of this is that it almost seems as if nothing has changed for Lena’s life in the Republic. Republic soldiers are still teasing her. She’s working with Annette again while also dealing with her uncle. Most of all, she’s still a handler but this time for a new unit.
The only difference is that the Republic has a dreary aura to it compared to how it was in cour one. Meanwhile, the Spearhead Squadron is currently living a new, more comfortable life.
As the second cour of 86-Eighty Six begins and the story progresses, fans will continue to be introduced to new characters. Episode 12 did right by introducing plenty of them, but two stood out the most. First up we have Ernst Zimmerman, the current interim president of Giad. The episode did a wonderful job of showing us the three lives that Ernst basically lives. One, as an ideologue. Second, as a political figurehead. And third, as a father for the next character we meet — Frederica.
Frederica stole the second half of the episode and that’s to no surprise. Misaki Kuno was cast as the voice actor for Frederica and she portrays her hyperactive, reckless behavior to a T.
This shot below from the episode stood out to me. Ernst interrupted Frederica yelling at him by telling the squadron her name. Notice how is his finger is placed right over her mouth as if he’s physically keeping her quiet. But to the squadron, it would look as if he’s just pointing to her. It’s simple and bears no meaning to the episode. But it’s the simple stuff like this that separates 86-Eighty Six from others.
The squadron is now housed with the two in Ernst’s mansion and they become surprised when they learn he officially adopted them. Safe to say, the squadron felt completely out of place. Almost as if they escaped one box back in the Republic to being placed in another one while in Giad. Very befitting of the episode title “Welcome”.
There was a lot of information to retain from episode 12. The symbolism and repeated storyboarding from the previous cour drastically stand out in more ways than one — which is a good thing. But that’s an article for another day. The second cour is finally underway and it made a big splash! If you have a friend that needs to start watching the series, send them this article here.
The second cour of 86-Eighty Six will continue with Episode 13 on Saturday, October 9, on Crunchyroll.
What did you think of the new episode? Let me know in the comments! Make sure to vote for 86-Eighty Six in our first weekly poll of the fall.
Images via Crunchyroll
Copyright: ©2021 Asato Asato/KADOKAWA/Project-86