Yet another fun season of the popular anime Binan Koukou Chikyuu Bouei-bu LOVE! (Cute High Earth Defense Club LOVE!), this season with an added ‘LOVE!’ in the title. Binan Koukou Chikyuu Bouei-bu LOVE! LOVE!, or Bouei-bu for short, has recently finished airing.
Unlike last season, which was produced by Diomedea, this season was produced by Studio Comet. They’re known for School Rumble, Peach Girl and Suzuka, among others. The first season was reviewed by Maxi Straw and can be found here.
What’s new? What’s familiar?
Yumoto, Atsushi, En, Ryuu and Io are now all back in school, summer is over. This season starts off with the boys having a discussion in the Kurotamayu bathhouse, as they often do. It’s a very familiar setting which helps you get right back into this series’ mood. Although it seems as though the series now follows ‘normal’ high school students, it doesn’t take too long for a monster to show up. Despite their defeat of Zundar and Hireashi, at the end of the last season, their Loveracelets start calling once more, making them jump right back into their life as Love Battlers. Of course these monsters appear together with brand new enemies, the VEPPer, for them to fight.
The interaction between the main characters and the main characters themselves have not changed much since the last season. The atmosphere is very familiar as are the settings, as most of the episodes still mainly take place at the bathhouse and at their school. Spending time with friends and having fun together is clearly still one of their main focusses.
A new season comes with new costumes for the Battle Lovers, but the differences aren’t very big. In all honesty I didn’t notice the difference until I looked up some images of what they looked like in the first season, although the different transformation scenes did indicate something was different. The new outfits are still cutesy and for some still a bit embarrassing to wear, but there’s not as much emphasis on that this season as there was last season. The boys seem to have gotten used to transforming a bit more.
There are a few new important characters in this season, namely the Beppu brothers, Akihiko and Haruhiko. They remind me of the Hitachiin twins from Ouran High School Host Club, not only in their personality but also in their almost shounen ai moments. Both of them are obsessed with one single character and there is a lot of focus on them finding themselves to be ‘perfect’. Akihiko and Haruhiko have slightly different eye colors, which can help you keep the two apart. Their designs, both as VEPPer and the Beppu brothers, are very idol inspired. They often classify themselves as idols as well. When it comes to their relationship with one another it is clear that they have a strong bond and have not been able to depend on others very often.
Last season showed us a bit of Atsushi’s and Kinshirou’s past, now Yumoto’s and the twins’ past gets elaborated on. Thus continuing to show how the ‘bad guys’ relate or are linked to the main characters. This background information of their youths helps you get into the story more.
The genres of this season are no different from the last season: comedy, magic, school, shoujo and slice of life. All of the genres still fit with this season of the anime. Comedy is still the main theme of this anime, although some things you hear so often it loses its comedic effect, like ‘Love Making’. There are still a lot of puns in this series, some of which the characters themselves seem to be in on. On top of the comedic aspect of the series there are also some almost shounen ai moments. These are often explained away as brotherly love or not really explained at all. Nothing really happens though, it’s mainly a lot of blushing and some hugging, after someone got ‘drugged’. Personally I prefer it when more happens, even when shounen ai is only suggested, so this was a bit disappointing for me. A kiss on the forehead, hand or cheek or a few hugs when everyone was their normal self would’ve been much appreciated.
‘Futten Toppa☆LOVE IS POWER☆’ by Chikyuu Bouei-bu is the intro song of this season. Just like last season a lot of effort seems to have been put into making the song catchy. The song is very upbeat and clearly fits with the setting and characters well. Unfortunately the animation doesn’t always seem to keep up with the fast paced song very well. ‘Anata wa Haruka Ittousei’ by VEPPer is the outro song this season and is performed by the ‘villains’. Once more the outro centers around the villains of the season and shows some insight into their personalities and background. Aside from the outro VEPPer has a few other songs, they fit well with the voices of the two characters and their personalities. The outro song also seems a bit too fast paced for the images it was matched up with.
The animation and drawing style seem exactly the same as in the first season, which creates a good consistency. The animation runs pretty smoothly and the drawing style looks good.
As this isn’t a very serious anime it’s easy to overlook ‘mistakes’. For instance the ‘advanced technology’ that blurs their faces and changes the pitch of their voices once they’ve transformed, so their enemies can’t identify them. Granted this is way more worked out than in most magical girl anime, where they change outfit and suddenly no one recognized them, but it still doesn’t hide their identities. The VEPPer for instance clearly still have grey hair and as far as I could tell there were no other twins in the school with their posture and looks.
Another thing that bothered me, which often bothers me in magical girl series as well, were the transformation scenes. I get that they most likely took a lot of work and effort, they were well animated and thoroughly thought through. My problem with them is that the series shows the full transformations too often, as well as the transformations of weapons. This caused me to skip quite a bit in the episodes and leaves less time for anything you haven’t actually seen before.
The pronunciation of all the English words in the anime was lacking, as it unfortunately often is in anime. This can bother people, myself included, who know how these words should be pronounced. This is no different from the first season, but since there are only short English attack names it should be possible to work on the pronunciation of just those few words.
I enjoyed watching this anime, putting all the pet peeves I mentioned aside there were a lot of funny moments and the characters’ interactions can be very interesting at times, especially when they are forced to cooperate even when they’re not on good terms. I do feel that this is the kind of anime where you can just watch one episode and know most of what will happen in the series, especially since they kept to the same predictable formula of last season. The twins are welcome new characters, but still also follow the formula. Personally I would’ve preferred a slightly different setting. If you loved the first season and can’t get enough of the Battle Lovers then you should definitely watch this season as well!
There’s also a novel called ‘Binan Koukou Chikyuu Bouei-bu Love! Novel!’ if you’re interested in reading about the Battle Lovers.
Studios: Studio Comet
Started airing: 8th of July 2016
Number of episodes: 12