Dog Days’ (S2) – 8

Although the realm of Flonyard appears to be incredibly peaceful, exceptionally pleasant, and irrefutably safe, it’s essentially a world plagued with horrifying demons, merciless highway bandits, and innumerable crimes and destruction.  Even with respect to the lighthearted, friendly, and optimistic themes that Dog Days’ constantly upholds, Flonyard is beleaguered with threats and menaces.  While a world perfect for fun and adventures to any traveling hero or super-solider, it must be entirely the opposite for the citizens who inhabit these lands and call Flonyard home.

From the perspective of any humans, be it the visiting heroes residing in the various kingdoms or the audience watching this anime, Flonyard is presented to us as a world of excitement, adventure, and sociable beings with adorable animal-ears.  This is how we’re intended to see Flonyard, a domain created for our entertainment, our delight, and our desires.  It’s a place where you can play with your friends in assorted war-games, relax among the world’s elite in spacious, grandiose palaces, and rescue one another from whatever dangers arise.  It is designed and configured for us, meaning that every aspect of this realm is in some way intended for our enjoyment, be it straightforward or indirect.  And because of this, there are several aspects of this world that generate peril and vulnerability for the citizens in the various kingdoms of Flonyard.

Yes, to the people that are actually born, raised, and reside in Flonyard, life is close to hell.  While the townships within the kingdoms are safe, thanks to a protective force that surrounds these lands and prevents against injury and death, the entire world is full of callous monsters that can only be quelled by the most powerful of soldiers or warriors.  And not only that giant rat demon from the previous episode but the terrifying demon from the first season, too.  And even with the protective forces resonating throughout the lands, it doesn’t prevent one from being attacked and turned into one of those fluffy animal balls.  Keep in mind those rabbit bandits and the feral cat god were able to attack and mug people the citizens within their city walls, either being stripped of their clothes or stealing their wares.  And though it seems most of the population is within the military, evidenced by the swarms of people participating in the war-games, they are largely ineffective to these threats as they’re typically matchless against these terrifying beings.  Everywhere you look, be it within the castle walls, down the city’s thoroughfare, or in the untamed wilderness, danger awaits the people of Dog Days’.

However, most citizens heed no attention to these risks, nor does it seem to be a pressing concern for the leaders of the nations to address.  Instead, the world is deemed safe enough to sponsor various war-games between nations, hold massive festivals, and even broadcast live concerts, so the thoughts of how treacherous the world is are not actively on the minds of the people.  Hell, Galette doesn’t even have its own demon-hunting special-forces unit yet, so it’s somewhat evident that there’s some indifference toward this issue.  And with each nation housing an awe-inspiring hero and several formidable warriors, the thought may be that any issue can be addressed before it becomes a problem.  Not only that but it seems many of the demons that have harassed these nations are properly sealed and kept dormant, unable to ravage the lands anytime soon.  So while the world may be bursting with danger, none of it appears to be active danger, with the only issues being the clothes-stealing bandits and the wild cat god excited by shiny jewels and metals.

So, what does such an analysis on the setting have to do with the anime currently?  Well, given the episodic nature of the past few episodes, the question of a central plot to this sequel becomes more and more apparent with every passing episode.  While the first season was story-heavy and straight to the point, never deterring from the strict schedule it assigned itself, the second season has been carefree and lenient in how it illustrates its adventures.  But sometime, and likely sometime soon, the main plot of Dog Days’ will appear and we’ll be thrust into a fantastic quest involving the three nations and their main forces.  And what appears to be the only force able to warrant such an opposition, especially considering the foreshadowing throughout the previous episodes, would be an external force from nature that poses a threat to each society.  And by examining the setting of Dog Days’, we’re able to understand a bit more about what might possibly cause such an event to occur: the fact that the world seems exciting to the visiting heroes, is hazardous to the townspeople, and the fact that no one really pays too much attention to it.  Given these perimeters, it’s likely some foreign threat will appear to challenge these nations and turn the anime toward a serious and comprehensive storyline.  Or not and just be lighthearted and episodic the entire time, either way really works for Dog Days’.

This concert sucked compared to the ones from last season.  Worse song, no awesome sakuga, boring visuals.  Millhiore is still cute but that was it.  I want my money back.

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  1. #1 by Tzaphqiel on August 28, 2012 - 6:05 PM

    Even with the monsters, I’ve never really considered Flonyard to be a particularly dangerous place, if only because the dangers present in Flonyard are a different, slightly more positive form of similar dangers present in our own world. This seems to be especially true of Galette, Biscotti, and Pastillage, if only because they seem like they’d be the Flonyard equivalent of First world countries. Incidentally, this might be why other nations don’t appear very often, as some of them might not be in such good condition as the nations that form the focal point of this story (and, as such, could be a good direction to follow on the off-chance that a spinoff focusing on Brioche, Isuka, Yukikaze, and the other demon-hunters gets made).

    That difference could even be used this season as the motivation for the foreign threat, but I somehow doubt that it’ll happen this way. Despite the “development” that has happened so far, I doubt that a whole new threat could be introduced and sufficiently developed in the remaining 5 episodes (assuming that this is a 1-cour season). It seems more likely that any plot that comes up will focus on the new heroes supplanting the old (which, admittedly, would involve a new threat) or otherwise dealing with the Hero Crystals, the re-sealing of Adelaide and Valerio (possibly involving the heroes and perhaps Brioche and Isuka), and the difficulties in returning Becky, Nanami, and Shinku to Earth in time (and ensuring that they can both remember what happened and return to Flonyard later on). And, perhaps, that secret that Becky shared with Millhiore could turn out to be a major plot point as well.

    Of course, the love triangle involving Shinku, Millhiore, and Eclair (or love square for anyone who still has hopes for Becky in this case) could also play a part of the story, but I somehow doubt that it’ll be taken very seriously. Given that the kiss Shinku and Eclair shared was completely accidental (even though it still left Eclair noticeably fazed), and that Millhiore hardly seems to be the jealous type (based on her conversation with Becky and her adorable freak-out when Becky asked her if she was considering marrying Shinku in the future), it could very well be a minor point that will continue to be left open or which will be left for a time-skip of sorts.

    As for the concert, I liked Millhiore’s little light show that went along with the song, but the song did feel a little sad. Perhaps that is also related to future plot developments? If nothing else, though, at least she didn’t have a wardrobe malfunction mid-show, which is rather surprising when you consider that dress she was wearing.

    • #2 by avvesione on September 6, 2012 - 10:18 PM

      Yeah, there are a number of plot points that need to be wrapped up before the season ends and you highlighted them all, especially the Hero Crystals, the love triangle, and all the characters, especially Adelaide and Valerio and, of course, Couvre. Be interesting to see how they try to tie everything together if indeed this is only 13 episodes like the first season.

      I didn’t really get the sad feeling from the song like you did, but was a bit disappointed at the lack of energy, emotion, and excitement that this one lacked compared to the last few. Not that the concerts or songs are particularly important to me but still would’ve been nice to see.

  2. #3 by elior1 on August 28, 2012 - 10:13 PM

    the song from season 1 was better but this was good as well and i loved the kiss of shinku and eclair even if this was happend becouse of the cat thief

    • #4 by avvesione on September 6, 2012 - 10:22 PM

      Yup, I even included a picture of the kiss for you in this post.

      And since I never did get around to writing about the kiss like you suggested in a few previous comments, I’ll give you my thoughts here since it’ll be more personal and I don’t have much to say on it. I thought the whole kiss scene was cute, especially with Shinku blushing, too, and not just Eclair. It really made something out of nothing (or at least that’s how it was progressing before the kiss) and made it the focal point of episode 9. Glad it happened, just hope something significant comes out of it soon and that doesn’t reset the relationship like I kinda am dreading…

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