Show By Rock!!# is the second season of the anime adaptation of the rhythm game developed by Geechs in conjunction with Sanrio. The first season is called Show By Rock!!, with the second season being identified by the ‘#’ in the title.
The review for the first season can be found by clicking here.
The director for the series was Takahiro Ikezoe, whilst it was written by Tōko Machida. The studio that produced it was Bones, and the music is by Yasuharu Takanashi, Funta7 and Rega Sound.
Show By Rock!!# aired as part of the Autumn 2016 season, and is available on Crunchyroll.
Put simply, Show By Rock!!# is just more Show By Rock!!; there isn’t really much here that’s too much different from the first season. The plot basically boils down to Plasmagica and other bands using the power of music to save Midi City – or, rather, Sound Universe. The threat may be greater, but the power of music is the constant thing here.
This second season even has a similar structure to the first: plot-related things happen in the first episode, we get some slice-of-life stuff for a few episodes after that, and then the last few episodes bring the main plot back into focus.
Unlike the first season though, the pacing is arguably improved. The way in which events play out feels about right.
The humour in the slice-of-life sections manages to hit the right notes, making for an enjoyable experience where the characters are having fun, sort of just ignoring the fact that the Queen of Darkness is drawing in…
Whilst there are similarities, some differences do crop up. First, the use of CG that shows the characters in their Myumon (chibi animal) forms seems to be less prevalent. It is still present, but there are also plenty of time when we see the bands playing with more traditional animation.
On top of the already familiar bands – Plasmagica, ShinganCrimsonz and Criticrista amongst others – there are also some new bands introduced. Arcareafact serve as rivals for ShinganCrimsonz, and connections between various bands also crop up.
It is the band Ninjinriot who kicks off the plot of the second season; upon witnessing the devastation caused by Queen of Darkness in the future, they travel back in time and bring Cyan back to Sound City once more.
With the exception of the new additions and changes already mentioned, talking about Show By Rock!!# is more or less repeating what has already been said about Show By Rock!! (it’s not the clearest distinction between two seasons, huh?)
If you enjoyed Show By Rock!!, then you’ll probably enjoy its second season as well. If you’re looking for something new, then you’ll probably be disappointed.
Something that is not disappointing, though, is the soundtrack. In a show about music, you’d want the soundtrack to be a key part of the experience, and it’s just as great as the first season’s – arguably better.
New songs from Plasmagica and ShinganCrimsonz are great to listen to, and the new bands introduced in this season certainly don’t slouch. Whilst we hear some incredible songs from the bands, it might just be a certain song sung by two particular characters in a flashback that stands out the most – perhaps due to its catchy melody, or the adorable scenes of those two characters merrily singing and playing together. It’s just a shame about what happened after that…
It’s more Show By Rock!!, which has slight improvements over the first season. Said improvements aren’t quite enough for it to earn a higher score than its predecessor, but it’s still enjoyable to see the power of music being used to save the day.