The last time I checked in on Araragi and his harem of quick talking gag spewing oddity belles I stated that I wasn’t overly hyped for the new season. I’m still a big fan of the Monogatari series but after spending a whole summer catching up on the series it can cause fatigue. Allowing myself a good three month break from the series has refreshed my passion for head tilting, colourful backgrounds, and borderline incestual content. Last week I spent an evening binging the whole of Hanamonogatari and it’s good to be back to the world of oddities.
After the stakes were raised to the highest they have ever been with Nadeko Medusa, Hanamongatari has lowered them to a more personal story regarding our favourite sporty lesbian Suruga Kanbaru. Without Senjougahara and Araragi, Kanbaru has to carry the story and she does so brilliantly. Like Kaiki before her, you really start to enjoy seeing the world through her perspective rather than Araragi’s. Although I thought a lot of the series’ comedy is absent without Senjougahara’s quick tongue.
Many of the supporting cast are absent this time round with only the Araragi siblings making a brief appearance. This story is about the rivalry between Kanbaru and new mysterious girl Rouka Numachi. Part mystery and part drama, Hanamonogatari’s short five episode run could be considered as an extension to Monogatari Second Season as Kanbaru since she was absent during that season.
Fans of the show shouldn’t fret about the quality of the show as it still possesses stellar production value. The plot moves along at a nice pace, not lingering too long in one setting but I think that the recent explanation’s for character backstories slows things down a bit too much. This is not a newcomer friendly show as they wouldn’t appreciate the nuances and character dynamics that are so often playing underneath the surface interactions.
Hanamonogatari gives you another view of Araragi’s world allowing you to finally understand how everything is falling into place.