Kaguya-sama: Love is War – Ultra Romantic

Kaguya-sama: Love is War – Ultra Romantic

Kaguya-sama: Love is War - Ultra Romantic anime series cover art
Kaguya-sama: Love is War – Ultra Romantic

Season Overview

Kaguya-sama: Love is War – Ultra Romantic (Kaguya-sama wa Kokurasetai: Ultra Romantic / かぐや様は告らせたい-ウルトラロマンティック-) is the third season of the series. It also has a different naming convention than what the series used prior.

In case you weren’t aware, a question mark is the only difference between the Season 1 and Season 2 titles. In Japanese, a question mark (?) replaces the colon (:) from the Season 1 title in the Season 2 title. Season 3, though, goes back to using the colon and adds a subtitle, Ultra Romantic.

Does this change matter at all? No. But, anime tend to stick to their naming conventions across seasons. So, I thought this was interesting.

Anyway, Kaguya-sama is the best anime of the spring 2022 season. I’d say that its main competition was the Magia Record Final Season. But, that was just some leftover episodes from the previous season. So I’m not sure if I’d actually count it as a spring anime.

I know there are some people who will say that Spy x Family was the main competition for Kaguya. And while I do think Spy x Family was the better of the two in the middle of the season, I don’t think that overall.

The first third of Kaguya-sama Ultra Romantic was very good. I’d say it was on par with Season 1 (which I liked more than Season 2 as a whole). The middle was less good. I’ll explain why later. And then the end of the season is why I’m going to argue that it’s the best anime of the season.

What I liked about this season was that the plot progressed. Outside of Ishigami’s little arc, Season 2 felt like more of the same content we got in Season 1. Ultra Romantic had more going on.

Mid-Season Low Point

Rumor has it that people liked Ultra Romantic Episode 8. I’m not one of those people. In fact, I’d say that it was the worst episode of the entire series. And, when this episode aired, I lowered my rating of the season.

So, what’s wrong with Episode 8? Well, it used literal manga panels multiple times. You can even see an example of one of those times down below. That’s not a screenshot of the manga. That’s the anime. And although some argue it was an artistic choice, it looks more like a choice made out of desperation.

One way people make fun of bad animation is to refer to it as a slideshow. Parts of this episode were literally a slideshow of manga panels. If you think this is good, you must be coping. Using a manga style can be good. This wasn’t.

Manga panels featuring Kaguya Shinomiya from Episode 8 of the anime series Kaguya-sama: Love is War - Ultra Romantic
Manga panels featuring Kaguya Shinomiya from Episode 8

When I watched Episode 8, I was very concerned about the future of the series. I thought, “if they’re resorting to using manga panels now, what’s the anime going to look like by the end of the season?” Usually, production quality doesn’t rebound over the course of a single cour.

The good news is that after Episode 8, we got five great episodes in a row to close out the season. So, yes, it does appear that the manga panels were a (poorly executed) artistic choice. But, it’s possible that this was all part of the master plan.

If Episode 8 looks like garbage, then the episodes that follow it will look even better by comparison. And, in defense of the manga panels, I’d say that turned out to be the case. But, I’d still rather not have a manga panel slideshow while I’m watching anime.

School Festival Arc

Something that surprised me was that I enjoyed the final five episodes of Ultra Romantic. They all take place during the culture festival. And if there’s one thing I can’t stand in anime, it’s culture festival episodes, arcs, and seasons. Typically, if a culture festival is present, I’m going to lower my rating.

It’s not like I see a culture festival and automatically reduce my rating. But, I tend not to like them. This may be the first time I’ve ever thought a culture festival arc was good. And, I’d say there are two main reasons for why that is.

The first reason is that there’s not a stupid school play. I hate when we have to watch the main characters perform some dumb play at a culture festival. It might be my least favorite trope in the entire medium of anime. Most of the time, I stop paying attention and open Twitter or Discord on my phone.

Kaguya Shinomiya from the anime series Kaguya-sama: Love is War - Ultra Romantic
Kaguya Shinomiya

Of course, Ultra Romantic still included a bunch of other culture festival tropes. There was a haunted house, a maid cafe, a bonfire, etc. And, to be fair, those can be boring too. But, the cast of Kaguya-sama is good. So, their interactions with each other in these situations made them enjoyable.

The second reason I liked this culture festival is that the content was good. By this, I mean there was a lot going on. Every one of the main characters had something going on. And while their stories were independent of each other, they were still intertwined.

For example, both Kaguya and Shirogane were invested in Ishigami’s confession. Also, Shirogane had to account for the wild card named Chika in his plans. And everyone was loosely tied to Iino due to the role she played during the festival.


Kaguya-sama: Love is War – Ultra Romantic is an 8/10. That’s still good enough for it to be the best anime of the season, even if it’s lower than what you may have rated it. Could it have been a 9 if it didn’t include a manga slideshow? Maybe.

If you enjoyed this review, remember to click the like button down below. Also, follow me on Twitter @DoubleSama so you don’t miss out on any future content. And come join our Discord server to discuss anime with other members of the community.

Finally, I’d like to thank Roman and Key Mochi for supporting this blog at the Heika and Senpai tiers this month. To learn more about how you too can become a supporter, check out Patreon.com/DoubleSama.

Discover more from DoubleSama

Subscribe to get the latest posts to your email.

Leave a Comment