The God of High School Episode 2

The God of High School Episode 2

Renewal/Soul

Right before watching this episode, I was saying over on Discord that Sword Art Online is actually the best-animated series of the season. And while I’d still say that the first episode of the new SAO season had more sakuga, the animation in this second episode of The God of High School was definitely higher-quality.

However, while I understand that the appeal of this series for the vast majority of viewers is the action, I can’t help but look at the other aspects of this anime and be disappointed. The characters are so bad so far. And after watching that second episode of Fire Force season 2, the characters of this series look even worse.

To illustrate this point, why don’t we examine what we know about the three main characters, Mori, Mira, and Daewi, so far.

Mira's sword from the anime series The God of High School
Mira’s sword

Mori is basically the most basic protagonist character you can have at this point. Hopefully, we’ll learn more about his motivations later on, but in this episode, he claims that his goal is simply to fight strong opponents. And this is backed up by the fact that his primary motivation for entering the competition seems to be having a rematch with the blonde guy.

Mira isn’t all that much better than Mori. Her goal is to grow her family’s dojo which has been on the decline ever since her father died — or potentially even before that. That’s not a terrible backstory for her, but it’s extremely cliché and I think this was a bit too early to introduce her background.

And lastly, we have Daewi, who we literally know nothing about. He’s just the cool guy in the background and I don’t really see any indication that his character is going to develop all that much. There’s nothing to develop.

Go Gamdo vs. Kang Manseok

Go Gamdo is my favorite character of the series so far, and he was in the first episode as well. He’s not all that interesting either at this point, but I really like his fighting style and that’s basically all there is to this series. I’m hoping that he’ll be a recurring supporting character going forward — and since he has a name and a unique design, so he should be.

Kang Manseok is Go’s opponent in the first round and is also the “villain” from episode 1. Although Kang has a name and a unique design, I don’t feel like he’ll be as important going forward as Go. Of course, I could be wrong, but he really seems like a prologue-type antagonist who’s just here to set up the story and main cast.

But who knows? Maybe he’ll become one of Mori’s allies now that he’s been beaten into submission.

Go using his Yin Yang Balance Strike on Kang from the anime series The God of High School
Go using his Yin Yang Balance Strike on Kang

The Go vs. Kang fight set up a lot of the basic information about the series. First, their fight allows us to learn about Mori’s ideals. Go is set up as a good guy and Kang as a bad guy. So when Mori steps in to rescue Go, it tells us that he has a particular set of ideals and he’s not afraid to break the rules of the tournament to uphold them.

Next, it gives us a rough power scale. We see that Go is stronger than most people predicted, but then it’s revealed that Kang is much stronger than Go is. So when we see Mori easily defeat Kang in turn, it signifies just how strong Mori is.

And then by showing the ease with which Park Mujin (the main antagonist) takes down Mori, we see how much stronger Mori will need to become before the end.

Charyeok

The third and final thing we learn from Kang specifically is the apparent “magic” of the series. Naruto has chakra, Hunter x Hunter has nen, Tower of God has shinsu, etc. In The God of High School, this power system seems to be called charyeok.

At this point, we don’t really know much about charyeok. We know it’s what Park Mujin used to destroy the island in the first episode, and we can infer that it’s what Kang uses at the end of this episode. It also looks like a dark purple haze and can apparently be used to perform long-range attacks.

That’s everything we know.

Mori surrounded by charyeok from the anime series The God of High School
Mori surrounded by charyeok

So in search of more answers, without spoiling the source material, I used Google Translate to figure out what charyeok means in Korean. And after that minimal effort, Google Translate didn’t have an answer for me. I’m sure if I dug deeper and used other translation sites I could figure it out, but I wasn’t willing to waste that much time on this.

There’s also the distinct possibility that charyeok isn’t even the correct spelling of the word. Crunchyroll is known for some having some iffy spellings, so I can’t be sure Google Translate is the one at fault.

The mystery of what exactly charyeok is aside, I’m not sold on its inclusion in the series. Maybe it will end up being cool and interesting, but for now, I don’t see it. I’d much prefer a “realistic” (this already wasn’t realistic) fighting anime than one that has a magic power system like every other shounen battle series.

Conclusion

What do you think of the second episode of The God of High School? Is the series still living up to the hype? Are you able to overlook the boring characters and apparent lack of plot as long as there are good fights? Do you think charyeok is necessary? Let me know in the comments.

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My review of the next episode is available here.

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