the sequel starts off in the aftermath of the first season. Some time has passed and once again, we are introduced to the city of Hellsalem’s Lot. From the first few episodes, we see that Leo’s life is still as hectic as you can imagine. It doesn’t long at all for the sequel to get you into the mood again as the pilot episode reintroduces the humor of the franchise. Episode 2 also gives an insight on the backstory of Hellsalem’s Lot that is more than just an exposition. It’s told through meaningful dialogues and gives the viewers a better understanding of its world setting. Indeed, Kekkai Sensen’s world fiction is colorful and has always bought a fascination to me.
Now, here’s the curious part about Kekkai Sensen. Who is your favorite character? Maybe you like the typical main protagonist, Leo. Perhaps someone as crazy as Zapp is on your list to look out for. Or maybe, someone that was overlooked from season 1 like K.K or Gilbert? Thankfully, Kekkai Sensen & Beyond gets to work at bringing those characters to attention. The first season heavily focused on the core members of Libra. However, this sequel brings to light with storytelling about the other characters too. Some of the noticeable examples are Chain, Gilbert, K.K., and even Zed.
It’s interesting to see what these characters do during their free time and honestly, it bought more interest to them. For instance, did you know that Chain and her fellow comrades still had an old nemesis who wanted revenge? Ever curious about what K.K’s family life is like and relationship with her son? Or even, Zed. The man has been really an outcast but in this sequel, he gets a nice spotlight with is background storytelling. I can also confess that seeing Gilbert go beyond his duty as a combat butler was highly entertaining. It reminds me of the Gotham/Batman-style action that became iconic from American culture.
That being said, I can’t say the storytelling is always great at selling its plot. Some of the later episodes can be a bit tedious and even boring to watch. Two episodes in particular in the latter half of the show gave me a weak impression. It focused on one of Leo’s friends (Riel) that I just couldn’t bring myself to enjoy watching. Not mention, Riel’s personality isn’t interesting to watch either despite the friendship he shares with Leo. In addition, it also felt inevitable that the sequel would bring back important characters from the first season. Leo’s sister Michella is a prime example. There have been several flashbacks throughout the sequel that shows how important she is to his life. It’s hard for me to say this but while it’s important to get to her character’s story, it doesn’t feel that impactful.
Bones is back at it again and Hellsalem’s Lot is looking better than ever. Just like season 1, this sequel makes attention to detail as one of its highlights. The complexity of the cities, advanced technology of abnormal sci-fi elements, and the even everyday objects makes its mark. It really excels at making its world feel alive. Character designs still gives a sense of style to themselves and we also get to see the hardcore action that bought so much entertainment like the first season. Fan service is mostly presented through the action sequences as the characters showcase their unique powers. The key selling point is how they influence outcomes and interacting with certain situations. I also can’t stress this enough but when it comes to action, Kekkai Sensen knows how to hit the bull’s eye to give the viewers what it wants.
While I can’t say Kekkai Sensen & Beyond’s theme songs are as creative as the first season’s, it still gives a memorable impression to showcase the talent of the directors. What really drew my interest towards technical aspects of the show is the OST. The mixture of jazz, eerie, orchestral, and melancholic music really synchronizes well with each other.