Darling in the FranXX (cour 2)

Darling in the FranXX (cour 2)

Darling in the FranXX anime cover art featuring the main characters
Darling in the FranXX Cover Art


After the first cour of Darling in the FranXX I had the series rated at an 8/10 and hoped it would continue on with the same quality. Unfortunately, the second cour was the most disappointing second cour I’ve ever seen.

The series dropped the original plot and world building, went off on a tangent nobody cared about, came back with an info dump episode about the world, then realized there was no clear ending in sight, and so ripped of the ending of Neon Genesis Evangelion.

I truly believe that the second cour of this series was written week to week with no clear conclusion laid out beforehand.

Disappointment in the FranXX

Somewhere around the end of the first cour is when we get our first glimpse at the true power of the Klaxosaurs when they destroy multiple human colonies. However, we then ignore this and take a detour for half of the second cour.

In this time, it appears the author decided to write his own fan fiction about two of the characters, Mitsuru and Kokoro. This side story even included a wedding between the two characters on the same weekend as the royal wedding in the UK, coincidence? Probably not. More likely the author was jumping on the bandwagon.

For multiple weeks the viewers had to sit through this B-plot which doesn’t really have any implications for the wider story, until I can only assume someone reminded the author of the original storyline. Unfortunately, the damage was done.

In an attempt to quickly remedy this, an info dump episode was released about the world before the beginning of the series. Normally this information would be spread throughout the series through visuals and hints, but there was no longer time to do it the right way, multiple episodes had been wasted.

We then come out the other side and get back to where the story had been left off roughly six weeks earlier. There’s a blue girl known as the Klaxosaur Princess, and with her introduction we can finally put a face to the enemy the kids have been fighting against for so long.

However, it’s at this point that I believe the author ran out of ideas for his series and resorted to stealing the ending of another, more well-known anime, Neon Genesis Evangelion. Originally this series paid homage to Eva, like many mecha anime since its release, but this ending is a bit too similar.

Turns out there’s an alien hive mind which has actually been the antagonist the whole time behind the scenes and the Klaxosaurs are actually the good guys, whoops. This alien hive mind, known as VIRM, wants the humans to give up their physical bodies and join them, exactly like in Eva.

Then, Zero Two becomes a giant woman for no apparent reason, and begins to fight off VIRM, just like Rei in Eva. However, since Hiro only has Zero Two, and not two girls all to himself like Shinji did, Zero Two also has to play the part of Asuka and be stuck with Hiro alone for eternity until all the souls of everyone are reincarnated (much like in Eva).

Now, let’s pretend the ending wasn’t stolen from Eva. What else could have happened instead?

For one, we could have actually flushed out more of the characters and their relationships with each other, but not in the way that was done for Mitsuru and Kokoro (who were probably the least important characters by the way).

You may recall that Zorome once got lost in the adult city and had an interesting conversation with an old woman about each of their partners. Zorome said the woman felt familiar, and the woman already knew who Zorome was. At the time I thought that Zorome and Miku were clones of these two, but unfortunately it was never flushed out.

There were so many interesting questions to be answered and directions to be taken from the first cour of the series, but none of it panned out. Aside from Mitsuru and Kokoro’s fan fiction arc, the rest of the character plot lines ended in the first cour as well, leaving the second to be pretty dry.

Even our protagonists, Hiro and Zero Two, didn’t really have any more growth. They learned that they met each other as children, and then they went back to being in love with each other unconditionally. No new developments there.

Klaxosaur Princess from the anime Darling in the FranXX
Klaxosaur Princess


In the end, Darling in the FranXX is a 5/10. The beginning of the series was great, but the ending was so poorly written and disappointing that it was probably a 3. Hopefully the mass score on MAL will go down over time, because this series doesn’t deserve the rating it has on there right now.

Rather than watching this anime, I highly recommend everyone go watch Neon Genesis Evangelion instead. It’s the anime this one copies and it’s actually better in every way. The animation is higher quality, the story is written better, and it has some of the best written characters I’ve seen.

The second OP for Darling in the FranXX is available here, but it features the same song as the first so it’s not too interesting.

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