Well here we are with the final ep. All in all it ended pretty much how I expected it to, lots of questions still unanswered and the story far from over.
Here’s my final review.
Final eps are a love/hate thing. If done well they can leave a lasting impression on you, if not you’ll hate them greatly. Asterisk War didn’t have a great ending but that was obvious given they started a new arc with only 3 eps remaining, so the ending they gave us wasn’t anything great. Honestly I didn’t really like it, it felt like they crammed way too much into this last ep instead of working through it all. I don’t usually do this as I hate spoilers, but I took a look at the wiki to get a general understanding of where ep 24 ended in relation to the light novels, from what I can gather they sped through volume 6, touched ever so briefly on volume 7, then went straight to volume 8 with a montage of them training for the Gryps Festa. It sounds rushed and it felt even more so considering it took them 21 eps to cover the first 5 volumes.
From looking at the chapter titles of volume 7 and the quick summary of it, there is a school festival that happens, Claudia reveals more about her secret, Ayato and Sylvia go on a date, more stuff about Haruka happens, and Ayato and co become second years at the school. All in all there is a lot of content that would be nice to see adapted (especially with Sylvia) but just looking at how this ended, I’m guessing this is just a ‘read the light novel’. If by some miracle they do announce another season then by all means I’ll be back to watch and review it, but at this point I’m assuming this will be the last we see of Asterisk War. So with all this in mind, let’s bring this back to ep 24 and talk about what happened in it.
We had a lot revealed to us over the last few eps but we get some clarification this time, especially regarding Julis’ reunion with Orphelia. So even though she wears the uniform of Rewolf, from what we learn from Julis she was taken back in the day by Arlequint and turned into a Genestella by means of an experiment preformed by this student known as Magnum Opus. As to how she ended up being a Rewolf student, I’m not exactly sure but somewhere along the way she became one. So basically the deal with Orphelia is that she was a girl in the orphanage who was good friends with Julis; she loved flowers and gardening and was a really kind and sweet girl. One day she’s taken away for this experiment to become a Genestella and after this processes she can’t go near the flowers she loved because her power withers away everything around her, including herself. So even though she’s the strongest Sterga in the world, she’s also extremely depressed because of what’s happened to her.
The middle part of the ep is back to dealing with Gustave Malraux and his arsenal of Greek mythological creatures. This time he brings out Hydra to destroy the town and it’s up to Ayato, Julis, Saya and Kirin to save the day. Just looking back to the light novel here for a moment, chapter 6 of volume 6 is titled “Dragon Subjugation” and I’m assuming it features another power of Gustave that makes a skeleton army if what I’m reading on the wiki is correct. Sadly we don’t get to see this happen even though it sounds like it would be something pretty cool. Looking back at the ep, the battle scene here was really well animated and it was very cool to watch. Asterisk War usually puts the effort into the battle scenes because they almost always are a treat.
What’s interesting about the next scene is we learn that it was Claudia’s father who hired Gustave to attack them, trying to stop them from joining Claudia in the Gryps Festa. During the conversation between Claudia and her father not much is revealed, but it’s clear everyone wants Claudia to pass on the Gryps Festa for some reason. It’s still not clear yet why they want her to not enter, but they’re certainly going through a lot of trouble to get her to drop out. This also goes back to Claudia’s secret agenda that we still no nothing about. Like I brought out last week, she mentioned this a very long time ago and since then we’ve had no follow up on it until now, well kinda. Claudia has always been an extremely mysterious girl and after 24 eps she’s even more mysterious than when we first met her in ep 1.
We close out the ep with Claudia vowing to win the Gryps Festa to change the country. Of course this means her brother won’t be as powerful, but she wants his help to change things. This alone is a whole other story waiting to happen because the higher-ups have the country in a stranglehold and won’t just give it up that easily.
Another interesting thing that happens is Madiath Mesa calls Ayato to tell him he found Haruka. I wasn’t really expecting this to happen, especially Mesa calling him, but now Ayato and Haruka have been reunited, well kinda. She’s still in the medical tank thing in a coma like state, but the journey Ayato set out to do has finally been accomplished. While Haruka won’t be waking up anytime soon and if she remains in this state things will get bad soon, so to fix this problem Magnum Opus offers her services once again. Of course this won’t be good given what happened with Orphelia, but Ayato is smart enough not to strike up a deal with her. Instead, Ayato along with Julis, Saya, and Kirin will join up with Claudia and take part in the Gryps Festa in hopes of finding a cure upon winning.
So after 24 eps where exactly does this leave us? Well, with an unfinished story. Like I mentioned in the outset of this review, they skimmed over volume 6, nearly all of volume 7 and were jumping into volume 8 by the final moments of ep 24. While Ayato finally found his sister, it opened the way to a whole new host of problems because of the state she’s in. Claudia still has a bunch of unanswered question swirling around her, and the Gryps Festa is looming in the distance too. Couple that with the fact there still is a lot of other material left, I really do want to see another season for this show as I want to see how this story will end. I hate ‘read the light novel’ ending but after what we got it’s looking more and more like that’s what it’s going to be.
Stepping back and looking at this second cour as a whole, overall the majority was spent dealing with the Phoenix Festa, which was a solid arc, but the last few eps were really something that should’ve been left for the start of the next season. It felt too rushed and had they more time to expand on the contents of volume 6, I think it would’ve been much better. What this all boils down to really is that we need another season. We’ve made it this far so it would be best to follow it through till the end.
While Asterisk War seems to get a lot of hate for one reason or another, honestly it’s got to be one of the better magic high school anime out there. Sure most are crap but this one I had a consistently good time watching week after week, even though it’s nothing we haven’t seen done before. I think the fact there isn’t much fan service makes it stand out compared to other shows in this same genre. Don’t get me wrong, I always enjoy seeing boobs and ass in my anime, but there comes a point where enough is enough and you just want something else to happen. Asterisk War never relied on boobs or ass to carry it through all 24, rather they put the story first and even when it came to the more filler-y eps they didn’t overload them with fan service. In the end this anime had a story to tell and it did a fairly solid job at that, open ending aside. If I were to recommend a school battle/magic high school anime to someone this would probably be among the first on the list.
So looking back at it all, where it started and where it ended, Asterisk War was a decent ride one that I enjoyed for what it’s worth but I just hope this isn’t the end yet. If there indeed is another season announced then you can count on me returning to review it, but if not then go read the light novel like you’re supposed to. Tallying things all up I’ll give Gakusen Toshi Asterisk a solid 7/10.
Well that’s going to bring an end to this show. I’d love to heard your thoughts on it in the comments below or if you know of any information regarding another season also be sure to let me know.
So that’s all for me this spring season, thanks for sticking with me and I hope to see you back here next season as I’ve got some excellent anime to review. As always I’ll have my personal season review post coming up soon, I’ll have it out in a more timely manner this time don’t worry.
Alright then that’s it for me, thanks for reading and I’ll see you next season!
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