Diabolik Lovers: More Blood Review
Warning: The following review may/will contain spoilers for the second season of Diabolik Lovers. If you wish to stay clear of what happens in the show's story, please exit the tab, and join me once you've watched said show. Or, you know, you can take that warning with a grain of salt, and still read on anyway. Whatever floats your boat.
Anyways, with that said, thank you, and onto the review:
Okay, we should probably back up on that. Anyone have really good cleaning products?
On a more serious note, Diabolik Lovers is back to prove it's the trashiest reverse harem I've ever seen. Granted, there are a few components to this series that are good (the unintentional entertainment, the animation, the OST, the voice acting), but oh, man. The bad components stand out to epic proportions. It all has to do with the writing and plot holes and how Yui's the saddest Nilla Wafer I've ever seen and oh wow, the Sakamakis don't treat her right.
But More Blood offered some hope. With a shift of focus to the Mukami family and a new plot line surfacing from the depths of Hell (along with a new writer), I was curious to see how this series would improve. Granted, I wasn't betting on a lot, but hey, one small step toward greatness.
But if there's one thing that Diabolik Lovers knows how to do well, it's to provide me with the most unintentional funny moments in life that make me giggle. I'm pretty sure that won't change even if Earth went into another ice age.
In the end, I got what I expected. The story proved to be more engaging this time around (despite a slip out the window around the middle because blood sucking), the Mukamis had more empathy to them since they were formally humans (though they also have a habit of using Yui for blood. Oops), and the Sakamakis don't play as big of a role (I wanted a little more Subaru, though). What I didn't expect was the ending, which actually had a good message and shows how recognition of the constant, useless blood-sucking is the first step toward giving Yui a chance to do what she wasn't able to in the first place: make choices.
I know. Shocking, right?
Of course, this anime wasn't without the problems that decked the halls of it in the first place. But with improved story writing and minimal plot holes, a third season might be able to further repair the tastelessness the majority of us viewers winced at since the beginning.
Let's first talk about the story:
It's been about a month since Cordelia and Richter were banished from the Sakamaki mansion for good, and Yui's been living her life in solitude.
HAHAHAHAHAHA kidding. She's still being used as a vessel to get blood from by, hmm...almost everyone? Yeah, that fits. This show starts with an almost four-way bite scene with the triplets before Reiji interrupts them.
So, to start over, it's been about a month since Cordelia and Richter were banished from the Sakamaki mansion for good, and Yui's been living her life as she did before the Awakening stirred up so much carnal horniness. Well, that is before the limo the Sakamakis ride in to go to school gets into an accident of unknown circumstances with everyone on board. No one was harmed.
While the group stares at the wreckage, a mysterious foursome appears on the cliff above them. Detecting their Not Pure Vampire blood, the brothers understand they are the enemy, with Ayato proudly declaring war. Of course, the sight of this group can't get out of Yui's head. What's with their interesting fashion sense, cool hair, and wait, what about that Eve stuff?
Ah, yes, my dear viewers, Yui's been having visions. In a foggy field with nothing but an apple blossom tree, she's been hearing a name call for Eve, like Eve from the Bible in the book of Genesis. To help with the fact that she can't sleep, Yui decides to wander out into the rose garden in the early morning hours for absolutely no reason.
While there, she hears that damn voice calling for Eve again, followed by the physical appearances of said boys on the cliff. After they capture and take her to their own fancy mansion, the obvious leader, Ruki, reveals that Yui has the blood of Eve from the long ago times. Stunned, our protagonist claim she couldn't possibly be the object these boys have looked for. However, because this is Diabolik Lovers and Yui is a special snowflake, we all know what the Mukamis are saying is in fact fact.
Because Eve's blood is important in waking up her beloved (who is Adam, for the Adam's Apple plan, and by Adam, I mean one of the vampire boys), the Mukamis decide to keep her at their place so they can use Yui's blood to cause theirs to awaken, thus creating a bond between them for the rest of their lives.
So while Yui's being toted as a blood source...again (but this time at her new "hang out"), the Sakamakis are pushed to the back burner aside from occasional appearances until Ayato "rescues" her and brings her back to their house. Once reinstated into the Sakamaki lifestyle, a lunar eclipse is set to fall upon the vampires, throwing everything into chaos. It might not affect the Mukamis as much, since they're not pure-blooded (which means, spoiler alert, they were once human boys who got turned into vampires by Karlheinz. Yay), but that still doesn't mean other guys aren't after Yui's blood. Who are The Founders, and why are they standing in the distance looking at the full moon slowly turning red? Only one way to find out. Time to fiercely strut to the cliffhanger!
In terms of good/bad news, the unexpected entertainment factor is back, and quite possibly better than EVER. Granted, we didn't have as many high points as Season 1, but these came very close. I mean, what do we do with these aside from putting them down in the Notes app on our phones and remember them in vivid detail? Nothing, I assure you.
Get ready, because there's more than just quotes this time. Whether it'd be a obvious set-up for a bite scene (because that happens at least six times), Yuma referring to a sugar cube as "his stuff," or Episode 10 beginning with Shu biting Yui in the rose garden for absolutely no reason, you will laugh just as much as you will cringe.
Or maybe not, because on the plus side of things, the story for More Blood is much more concise than its predecessor. One thing that helps is a new script writer who wrote for all of this season (Hiroko Kusanagi, who also wrote for Noucome), who not only seems to understand what story she's trying to write, but makes sure to keep it clear throughout the twelve episode run (that comes with twelve minute run times. Boo, why do you have to be almost three minutes shorter, episodes?). What's also good is that the plot for this season is hella engaging.
No, I'm not joking. Diabolik Lovers actually proved to have story chops this season. There's still that bite scene quota, obviously, but when I heard more about the Adam and Eve storyline, I was HOOKED. There was some confusion in there (who exactly the Mukamis were following wasn't clear going back and forth between translations, and the dreamscape that Yui finds herself in almost every episode), but over time, those questions were eventually answered, so no complaints there.
The ending was also gold. Distraught Ruki begins to realize that forcing the Eve side out of Yui's blood wasn't the best solution. After he and his "siblings" (because in a sense, they're not actually siblings) have their run of the mill with her and Ruki shuts her away in the world's most boring back room of a mansion I've ever seen, becoming Adam seems to be more impossible. Aside from the fact that the Mukamis aren't pure-bloods, Ruki also comes to terms that if his family were ever given the chance to become the Adam (though the technical title would befall on one boy), it would only be by Yui's choice. The girl has a will of her own, in case you forgot by all the dumb decisions the writers had her make, and since Ruki recognizes that what he and his brothers were doing to her when she lived with them reminds him of his dark past (because, again, every boy has a dark past), they need to change their behavior so that one day, Yui can let them in.
I'M SORRY, BUT WHO GAVE THE STAFF PERMISSION FOR THIS ENDING? THIS HIT ME IN MY FEELS SO HARD THAT I BOOED WHEN THE SCREEN FADED TO THE CREDITS! I KNOW THERE'S A WHOLE FIGHT THAT'S GOING TO TAKE PLACE AGAINST THE FOUNDERS SINCE THEY ALSO WANT YUI (for her blood, as well. What else, right?), BUT I DON'T CARE ABOUT THAT! I WANT MUKAMI GROWTH THAT Y'ALL KNOW AT THIS POINT AIN'T BEING GIVEN TO THE MAJORITY OF THE SAKAMAKIS!
Aside from one ominous image after said credits (a apple turns rotten in inverted light), this ending pretty much showed that if they cared/wanted to, these boys can change their ways. It doesn't make their earlier actions excusable by any means, but realization is only the first step towards becoming a better human. So go Ruki and go Mukamis! Don't drain Yui's blood, plz.
Unfortunately, the bad things about the first season still remain. Aside from the bite scenes having their fun bits, some of them still made me uncomfortable because it's clear Yui doesn't want teeth in her neck almost every single time she gets bitten. Aside from one instance of Yui being quite smart and given a choice about the two families pairing up, she is still pretty stupid and still doesn't know that she can use her legs as a weapon. Aside from the three minutes of time cut off, this show still did lag at points.
But wait, there's one new bad thing from this season that I only took notion of when Yui was still living with the Mukamis. When Ruki decides that she's been in the mansion for long enough without going to school, he lets her go to school. Of course, the first thing they do once they enter her is to leave her on her own, despite being fully aware that the Sakamakis are looking for her. And for the most part, when she sees them again (Kanato, Laito, Reiji, and Subaru in Episode 6, Shu in Episode 7 (though he does make a cameo in Episode 6), and Ayato in Episode 8), they are aghast that she is staying with a family that treats her so horribly (when she was taken against her will), aghast that she chose to stay with them (when she was taken against her will), and blame her for leaving in the first place (when, gee, I don't know, SHE WAS TAKEN AGAINST HER F**KING WILL).
Subaru is the only one who doesn't blame her for leaving outright (which I appreciate despite spotty dialogue in Episode 9), but there is where the entertainment part of the Sakamakis as a group died (you lived a good three months, though, so you'll be missed). There is no way that I can excuse a group of boys blaming a girl for leaving their side when she had no choice in the matter. It reminds me of victim-blaming in terms of sexual assault, which makes me uncomfortable.
Never mind that the bite scenes allude to this, but compared against the Mukamis, it dims the Sakamakis' light even further down. Kusanagi did a good job at showing how the Sakamakis are stuck in a little box with how they treat Yui (seeing as they didn't have a lot to do this season), but I'm surprised how none of them stopped to think to themselves, "Okay, how do we know for sure this girl escaped from under our noses, yet she probably wouldn't know where to go if she did leave?" It frustrates me, yet at the same time, shows how the Mukamis are the better family despite their starting treatment of Yui being the exact same.
So overall, the plot was better this time around and it built up to a great ending, but there were still those weaknesses that dragged this show down, along with some good old fashioned ass behavior. Like, c'mon, when you dwindle some of the entertainment factor in terms of this show's story, you know you did something wrong. But in those last two episodes (especially in Episode 11), we actually got some quality to the point where I almost started crying when re-watching this.
Time to meet up with our old friends and introduce some new ones. You heard that right! It's character time:
Let's recap what Yui and the Sakamakis were best known for in their first time around the block before I go to the more exciting family, who I like better as a group despite the fact they still treated Yui like a lump of hay to s**t on.
Yui was best known for being a comedy production. Harsh words, but true words. She was hilarious in everything she did, even though I should feel bad that she's doing nothing to help her situation. Here, she isn't any better, but she does have permission granted to her by the end (she also doesn't seem as against getting the blood sucked from her as she was anytime else). Let's not forget that she questioned the Mukamis after they captured her when Ruki said that they shouldn't be compared to the Sakamakis! Other than that, she was the same.
The Sakamakis are as well. Minus Ayato resuming to calling Yui Pancake, nothing's changed. Ayato is still domineering, Kanato is still as threatening as a Webkinz, Laito is still a perv, Reiji is still boring, Shu is still dirty (he also calls Yui a slut in the Japanese as well (to retract my statement from the last review), or to put it more accurately, "sinful woman"), and Subaru is still ANGST Central. Aside from wanting to see the last one much more than we did, I didn't really miss them when Yui got taken to the Mukamis.
Time to get the lists out. Naughty But Kind of Nice, Almost There, Naughty, and Naughty But Needs More to Him, stand at attention! I doubt I'll use you for all of the Mukamis, but just in case I do, keep an eye handy.
Let's first go over the stoic head of the family and the best-looking out of the Mukamis, Ruki:
Hey, don't stare at me at like that! I was only making a point. I was dead on...right?
Regardless, Ruki was the son of an aristocratic family (rather ironic to find out, since Yuma says multiple times that he hates them), who was continuously spoiled until his parents went bankrupt. While his mother ran away with a secret lover, his father committed suicide. Because of this, Ruki has a general distrust of people, despite the fact that in a letter his mom wrote him, she still claimed to love him. Taken to an orphanage, his former aristocratic status caused him to be bullied. That is, until he met his future family.
After careful planning, the four brothers tried to escape from the orphanage, but were caught in the process. Figuring Ruki was the mastermind behind it, a brand was burned into his back with hot iron. I would say that I wouldn't mind seeing the brand, seeing as we'd get some unexpected manservice, but knowing that it's connected to Ruki's past, that was probably wise on the staff's part.
While on the verge of death, Karlheinz appeared before him and offered Ruki another chance at life, but this time as a vampire. Accepting Karlheinz's terms of finding Eve (because that's what the anime mainly focuses on), as well as wanting to get revenge on the people who abused and humiliated him, Ruki, Kou, Yuma, and Azusa were turned into vampires. Fin.
As the Type A of the Mukamis (and the first in ranking), Ruki is distant and ice cold, referring to Yui as "livestock" (lovely) and wanting his family (though more so himself) to become Adam, no matter the cost. As such, when the process of summoning Eve's blood takes longer than expected, he begins to lose it. He can be often seen holding a blue book (which is said to have been something special to his father, but me and Luke believe it's the Bible), and is the proclaimed "rival" to Ayato, whose dynamic in the game I'm sure would be akin to Melrose and Monique's from Cycle 7 of America's Next Top Model.
Yeah, I think you know who would be who (Ruki is the mature one trying to cook dinner while Ayato is the one saying everything the former is saying like, "Ah, you're scary."). But, alas, since The Founders are a thing, the families learn that teamwork is what's going to work to make sure Yui is safe.
I couldn't help but be intrigued by Ruki. Sure, there is the promise of giving Yui a better life before calling her livestock and draining the blood from her body YET AGAIN (which is enough to make you go, "Oh, how ironic."). but there is also his eventual breakdown as Eve decides not to show up to the family reunion. Seeing Ruki battle through this pressure of realizing there's something wrong with his and his brothers' plan to the point where the only solution is to store Yui in a dark room far from civilization (like both mansions are) becomes even more compelling when he plays it off as no big deal and that he's got this, whereas internally, he is one big MESS. It leads to a powerful scene between him and Yui that almost made me cry the second time I watched Episode 11, because after it's all said and done, the Sakamakis have Yui back and it's obvious they have a better chance of being blessed with the Adam title since they are pure-blooded.
This talk allows Ruki to realize that Eve needs her own free will and to not have her life dictated, so all in all, despite the rocky road for all of the Mukamis involved, Ruki's character was improved the most, and if there is a third season (or if I just read/watch game walkthroughs), it'll be interesting to see where his development goes from here. He'll get Naughty But Kind of Nice.
Next up is my personal favorite, Kou:
When still a human, Kou was abandoned by his parents and thrown down a well as a child. His only wish was to see the bright blue sky from the opening above, which became stormy after he was found by members of the orphanage where he would later meet his new family. While there, he was sent off to aristocrats to be used as a plaything because the heads thought he was too beautiful and child prostitutes are a real thing (even though I don't see them a lot).
Since the clients Kou saw were given free reign, he was abused constantly, ending up with scars on his back that even as a vampire haven't healed. At one point (according to a friend), this sexual trade got to Kou's head so much to the point where he tore out his right eye with a fork, but since he saw new people (and old "friends") every night, his wounds never healed. Because of this, Kou believes that the world is all about giving and taking what's yours, which explains his Kanato-like mood swing in Episode 5 that still bothers me.
When revived by Karlheinz as a vampire, Kou's primary wish was to once again see a blue sky akin to how he saw it when as a child in the well. In an surprising act of generosity, the latter got a prosthetic eye to replace the one he lost. Though it's never explicitly stated in the anime, apparently when this eye goes completely pink, Kou is seeing into other people's hearts. Huh, interesting. If he existed in real life, I'd have to be very careful about what I tell him when it comes to love.
While the second ranked vampire of the Mukami household, Kou hides that fact when he enters the human world because he becomes a sugoi idol desu (that is the only time I will make this joke). We don't see him really doing anything, but I bet it's the usual. Talk show interviews, photo-shoots, and the works. He can also be two-faced, showing a charismatic and playful outside, but when things don't go his way, he quickly becomes furious and his motivation blackens. His proclaimed "rival" is Subaru, who he likes to tease about his dormant feelings for Yui, who he calls "Little Masokitty." Cute.
The reason why Kou is my favorite isn't because of the fanservice (a pair of black pants he wears in his casual clothes flatter his figure all too well), it isn't because he looks nice, and it isn't because he's voiced by Ryohei Kimura (who will always hold a special place in my heart, much like with Yuma's seiyuu). It's because of his cute and precious out there persona that quickly darkens when something doesn't fall into place. It doesn't scream #BoyfriendGoals and seeing him treat Yui like this when he gets mad makes me want to break out this GIF:
But I think what works in Kou's favor is that he subtly knows that what he experienced while at the orphanage has affected his behavior. Or it could be because the staff actually decided to give us more insight into the Mukami brothers by 25% so I didn't have to sort through everything in my brain to match the backstory with a boy. I don't know.
I like characters that are more than surface-level. Kou fits the bill, because despite his asshole behavior when pissed as all hell, there's a heart in there...somewhere. I don't think his intentions are inherently bad (although one line in the scene I linked above is from the Crunchyroll translation where he literally states that he won't kill Yui until he becomes Adam, which is all kinds of wrong). Of course, that doesn't excuse the fact that goddamn it, Kou, don't be so domineering. I saw you cry out in your sleep, there has to be someone in there who has a 50-50 good heart.
But that's asking too much from this anime, sadly. In the end, Kou was a good boy despite his problems and I'm curious to see how he will improve on himself if given the chance. For him, it's another Naughty but Kind of Nice.
Time for Yuma, along with a special announcement regarding something in Shu's past:
Do you guys remember Edgar? You know, the human friend that Shu made who died in a village fire that Reiji caused? Well, this is our guy! I was 100% convinced this series was just going to brush past Edgar entirely and leave him as dead, but nope. Here he is, alive and reborn as a vampire, with no memories of what happened prior to the fire. How convenient.
After nearly being burned alive, Edgar had to survive on the cruel, cruel streets before being taken under a street gang's wings. Going by the name Bear, Yuma had to ditch the traits that would qualify someone as "good" or "holy" and became loud-mouthed and reckless in order to stay with the group. After the rest of them were killed in a coup, he found himself at the orphanage with his eventual brothers. When Karlheinz approaches him with the offer of being revived after their botched escape attempt, Yuma's goal is to get rid of the social classes so that the one type of people he can't stand the most are gone: the aristocrats.
This can't get any more ironic, but it does. His "rival" is Shu, who he calls a NEET because of his laziness and that attitude reminds him of an aristocrat. The pairing makes sense, given they were friends a long, long time ago, but man. The Sakamakis sure had a cushy lifestyle. Thank Daddy Dearest who treated his wives like his property.
But anyways, now Yuma is Yuma and is the third brother of the Mukami household. He likes to call Yui Little Pig/Piggie or Sow depending on the translation you watch (oink), and while not brimming with aggression and dominating presence, likes to garden, which he brags about because his garden is his pride and joy. It's kind of cute, honestly. At this point, both Reiji and Shu know Yuma is Edgar, so all of the dots have been connected. But man, it'll be really awkward once the others finds out.
Sadly, this messy dark red-haired vampire was my least favorite out of the Mukamis. Despite being voiced by one of my favorite seiyuu, Tatsuhisa Suzuki (VOICE CRUSH VOICE CRUSH), I was kind of bored with him in terms of personality. Aside from being Edgar, there's not a lot to him aside from Proud Father of a Garden and Angry Brewing Pot. He does provide the most awkwardly funny moment of the show when he barges in on Yui taking a bath and bluntly states after complaining about her scream, "No one's going to get aroused by the sight of THAT body." You may think that, Yuma, but some doujin writers/artists may disagree with you.
His look may also be a factor into why I'm not gravitated to him as I am to Ruki and Kou, but that's a whole other thing. Yuma just didn't give me as much satisfaction as his two brothers did, because they were written in a more complex light, but at least he's more compelling than Reiji will ever be. That would be sad in any other scenario, but for this series, it's another thing to relish. I'll grant him a spot on the Naughty But Needs More to Him list because I'm nice and it has nothing to do with him being voice by the seiyuu of Ranmaru Kurosaki WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT HEHE-
Last but not least from this family, we have Azusa:
Azusa's backstory is the one that made me the most sad if I'm being honest. Much like with Kou, Azusa grew up an orphan who had no knowledge of his parents, but unlike the former who lived in a man-hole, this boy grew up on the streets, where he believed his life served no meaning. He was taken under by three mischievous children named Justin, Melissa, and Christina, who only used Azusa as their punching bag for no particular reason. Eventually, this constant pain became so freeing that this now vampire convinced himself getting hurt was the only way he could feel alive.
The three other kids found this strange and eventually abandoned him (they also died shortly after they tried to rob an aristocrat. We're still going full circle, people), which made Azusa even lonelier. Wanting to keep a piece of these short-lived "friends" by his side, he began to cut himself and named three scars on his right arm after them (though he's only shown speaking to "Justin"). Once at an actual orphanage, he was still treated like dirt until he met Ruki, Kou, and Yuma.
When Karlheinz offered Azusa a second chance at life as a vampire, Azusa took it because he wanted to feel pain again and not be looked down upon like he was when he was young. As the fourth Mukami brother in title, Azusa is very aloof. He keeps a collection of knives in his room and isn't as aggressive with Yui (yet he does come on strong, like all of the boys), but he is curious about her having Eve's blood and what it could provide him and his family if they are chosen as Adam. His "rival" is Kanato, but they don't really have any tension if you discount the OVA.
I'm not kidding. All Azusa does is throw Kanato's teddy bear into a fireplace (RIP Kanato's Teddy 2013-2015) when Kanato is THIS close to choking Yui to death because she was considering going to the Mukami household after the Founders' send wolves there to find our protagonist for their own means that are 100% blood-related and Ruki got injured protecting Azusa in the first place. She does end up going, BTW, since Kanato was distracted enough by his teddy parting in such a morbid way.
To be honest, I liked Azusa more than I was expecting to. I thought he would be incredibly creepy to the point where it would make me want to take five showers just to cleanse myself, but he's honestly quite harmless if you don't give him a knife. Compared to the other vampires who know that yes, Yui is in pain and yes, constantly sucking her blood is a bad idea because she'll die and she says no a million times to any successful attempt, one of my friends from school (the same friend who provided the info about Kou's eye) gave a pretty good statement as to why Azusa is her favorite: he doesn't have a clue that what he's doing is wrong. Because of how he grew up and what he experienced while he grew up, this is what made him well...him. Yes, I know we can say this about EVERY boy in the entire franchise, but in Azusa's case, it's the one where it hits the most, and it's just OH MY GOD YOU POOR THING. Can he birth a new list?
Azusa also genuinely cares about Yui, and though it's only a slight glimmer in Episode 10 and it might just be my imagination, I don't think he wants her for the sake of having her blood. She's probably the first person outside of his brothers that he feels affection for, and that's pretty powerful. The Mukamis care about Yui in a way that goes beyond her blood, and I liked how this season touched upon that, since it was more than what the Sakamakis have showed thus far.
Geez, things are starting to get a little deep. Let's just move on now before I become a big pile of rubble and babble on and on about nothing, really.
Other characters include The Founders and that's it. Unless you count Kanato's teddy having an important role by getting sacrificed by fire and Karlheinz appearing by voice and in a flashback, everyone's been covered. So that means we need to move on now. Phooey.
The animation for this series was, once again, produced by Zexcs, who have also worked on anime such as A Dark Rabbit Has Seven Lives, Say I Love You, and The Great Passage.
Nothing has changed for the animation here. It is still very beautiful, and there are more settings. It gives Zexcs more room to show the budget for this show wasn't low at all (and if it was, well, they fooled me). I liked how the Mukamis were designed compared to their game counterparts, the dark atmosphere is still incredibly potent, the dream sequences always had a sort of serene beauty to them, and there were hardly any dips in consistency. The only thing that could have been animated better were the Founders' wolves, since they looked pretty grainy, but alas, I can't get everything I desire.
I'm curious to see where Zexcs will go from here, since it was 2005 when Sukisho started airing, and we've come a long way since then. The beauty of the animation definitely makes this show stand out among the other reverse harems aside from its...tastelessness.
New pieces for this season were composed primarily by Saki, who hadn't worked on any anime score prior to this one (though she did compose some anime openings). Most of the pieces that Yuki Hayashi produced for Season 1 return, and you may also know Hayashi from his work on Blood Lad, DRAMAtical Murder's anime adaptation, and the two most recent series of Pretty Cure.
While I liked the new pieces to this OST, I wasn't as fond of them compared to what Hayashi brought in the first season. Don't get me wrong, Saki brings the creepiness and melancholy that draws me further into the show, but compared to Hayashi, an oomph lacked and didn't leave me with a lasting impression outside of a few tracks. So when the old pieces came back, I was incredibly excited to hear them. They even played one without backing percussion twice! There are a few I go back to from this season, but it's not as many in terms of the percentage. It'll be interesting to see what happens if a third season gets greenlit.
Voice acting wise, nothing has changed for the Japanese. The returning seiyuu still sound great, the blood-sucking/moaning sounds are cranked up to eleven this time (with props given to Ryohei Kimura, Tatsuhisa Suzuki, and Kosuke Toriumi for really selling it), and the Mukamis were a welcome addition to colorful personalities. I was familiar with all four of the males voicing them, so I was not surprised by their performances being anything other than great.
My impression of the English dub has weakened as I've watched more of both seasons, and it's due to the issues I talked about last time. I'm still not sure when I'm going to make time to watch the full dub, but it may be a while. Thinking about the -kuns I'll hear sitting through this season makes me wince.
New additions to the highlights from the original Japanese are Takahiro Sakurai, Ryohei Kimura, Tatsuhisa Suzuki, Daisuke Kishio, Toshiyuki Morikawa, Showtaro Morikubo, and Ryota Takeuchi (who does some pretty bombass narration in Episodes 1 and 2 as possibly Karlheinz).
Diabolik Lovers: More Blood still gave the trashy entertainment I was expecting from this franchise, but it snuck in a little more on me. I was invested, near tears, and that ending proved this series can only go up from here if the Mukamis were able to recognize Yui is not a paper crane. The great aspects are still great, the entertaining moments come through, I was more prepared then ever to see what would happen next, and the writing was SO much better despite Yui fainting a lot (among other things). It does feel like a chore now to get through twelves previous episodes of somewhat muck, but in the end, it may have actually been worth it.
This still wouldn't be recommended to those outside of the reverse harem boat without having watched Season 1 (if you want to even with its problems) but if you want a great chuckle, put this on, and let the fun commence! For now, it's time to leave this world behind unless something comes out of the woodworks.
Less story holes despite short episodes.
Still the ENTERTAINING MESS we live and breathe.
The development of the Mukamis.
This show was actually good, like WTF.
Strong OST as a whole.
Lovely voice acting.
Episodes are shortened by three minutes.
The male characters still don't treat Yui well for the most part.
Yui getting victim-blamed by most of the Sakamakis.
New OST pieces aren't as strong compared to Hayashi's work.