Tag: Laid-Back Camp

Laid-Back Camp Season 2

Laid-Back Camp Season 2

Laid-Back Camp Season 2 anime series cover art
Laid-Back Camp Season 2

Season Overview

Laid-Back Camp Season 2 (Yuru Camp Season 2 / ゆるキャン△ SEASON2) is, to a large extent, the same kind of content as was found in the first season of the series. And I’ll also say that while it’s not all that similar to Room Camp, it is reminiscent of it in some ways.

If you enjoyed the original season of Laid-Back Camp, you’re going to enjoy this season as well. Unless your taste in anime has significantly changed to the point that you’re no longer interested in CGDCT slice of life series, you’re probably going to feel like it’s on par with season 1.

Now, I wasn’t really a fan of Room Camp. And if you feel the same, you may be a bit worried by my comparison to it. But don’t worry, because the only thing that’s reminiscent of Room Camp is that this season has a slightly larger focus on travel.

The original season of the series was primarily about camping. Yes, there was travel involved and the campsites featured in the series are all real places that you can go camping at — though you probably won’t always have a perfectly clear view of Mt. Fuji.

Room Camp was very different in that it didn’t involve camping at all and was more about the experience of traveling to new and different places. This season, while it still has camping content, features a lot more travel-centered content.

At least, that’s how I felt when watching it. I don’t remember if this season had any of those cute camping tip animations, but I don’t think it did. Camping happens, but it doesn’t really feel like it’s teaching you about camping anymore. I guess that means we’re ready to go out and do it ourselves now.

What’s New?

When trying to think of what was unique about this season, I could only think of two things. The first of those two things isn’t a what, it’s a who. A new character, Ayano Toki, was introduced. Unfortunately, that’s not as exciting as it might sound.

Ayano is Nadeshiko’s old friend from before she moved to wherever exactly it is she lives now. But, she’s not introduced as a new character who’s going to be a part of the main group. If I remember correctly, she’s just visiting for a short time.

That’s all fine. I think it could have been a bit odd to force a new main character into the group now that the dynamic has already been established. The issue is that I think Ayano only appears in one or two episodes, and she has very little screen time.

Ayano Toki eating a rice cracker from the anime series Laid-Back Camp Season 2
Ayano Toki eating a rice cracker

Ayano not sticking around is fine. But it would have been nice if she had a bit more of a role. As she is currently, she’s basically as much of a character as Rin’s grandpa. He appears a few times briefly, but he’s not even a secondary character like Nadeshiko’s sister, Sakura.

The other thing that’s new is that the girls go on a big trip. In the first season, they did all (or maybe just most of them) go on a camping trip together. But the big trip in this season didn’t really focus on camping at all, which is kind of odd for a series about camping.

Instead, as I mentioned earlier, it was all about going to new places and sightseeing. They climb a mountain (hill), go to the ocean, see capybaras, etc. They basically did everything on this trip except camp. Well, technically they did camp too.

Do I Need a Season 3?

I know there are a lot of people who probably want a third season of Laid-Back Camp. And while I’d welcome a third season, I don’t actually need one. At this point, I don’t think another season will give me anything unique enough that it will be worth it.

Unless the girls start camping in more extreme and unique places, which I don’t think they will, it’s just going to be more of the same thing. But, I do realize that some people may look at that and point out that there are other series with more seasons of “the same thing” that are still good.

One example I can think of is Non Non Biyori. That’s a slice of life series with three seasons, and the third season is the best. But the difference I see between that and something like Laid-Back Camp is that Non Non Biyori isn’t really about anything.

The laid-back campers from the anime series Laid-Back Camp Season 2
The laid-back campers

In Non Non Biyori, the girls can continue to do all different sorts of things that keep the show interesting. Laid-Back Camp is much more restricted in what it can do because it’s specifically about camping and traveling to outdoor places.

They can go to a bunch of different campgrounds. But if those campgrounds aren’t very unique or there’s not a new lesson about camping to be taught because of them, they’re not going to be as interesting. I think that’s why this season focused more on outdoor attractions near campgrounds.

I guess a third season could focus on different kinds of camping. However, that might require that new characters are introduced, which gets a bit more complicated. So far, all of the girls generally participate in the same kind of camping. They’re not each having unique camping experiences in relation to one another.

Conclusion

Overall, I gave Laid-Back Camp Season 2 the same score that I gave Season 1, which is a 7/10. It’s a solid, good season of anime. I just don’t think that it’s anything overly special. And I wouldn’t say that it does anything better or worse than the first season — aside from the OP/ED.

The OP song of Season 2 is Seize the Day, which I don’t like as much as Shiny Days from Season 1. However, I think the visuals of the second OP are much better and overall the second OP is better as well. Also, from the OP, you can see that this season is definitely more about travel.

I’m going to say that the opposite is true for the EDs. I love both songs, but I’m picking Haru no Tonari from the second ED over Fuyu Biyori from the first. With that said, I actually like the visuals of the first ED more than the second, and I think that one’s better overall.

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

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

Laid-Back Camp Specials

Laid-Back Camp Specials

Specials Overview

The Laid-Back Camp Specials (Yuru Camp△ Specials / ゆるキャン△) are three shorts with an average length of about 8 minutes, making the trio roughly as long as a standard episode when combined. I’m not really sure why I never watched these specials until now considering I’ve seen both the original Laid-Back Camp and the Room Camp short series, but here we are.

I went into these specials expecting them to be mini versions of the main series episodes. However, that’s not what they are. Instead, they’re a combination of Room Camp and completely random content. The first episode is literally titled “Room Camp Episode 0,” the second episode is effectively a Room Camp episode, and the third episode is… something else.

But despite the fact that I didn’t get what I was hoping for out of these shorts, they were quite good. They weren’t as good as the main series, but they were definitely better than Room Camp, which was an overall disappointment for me.

Room Camp Episode 0

The first episode was the weakest of the three, which makes a lot of sense considering it’s just the prequel episode to the Room Camp short series. This episode “follows” Chiaki Oogaki and Aoi Inuyama as they play make-believe camping within the club room.

I’m pretty sure there was an episode from the actual Room Camp that was just like this one, but I can’t be certain because I’m not going to check.

It starts off with Chiaki and Aoi looking through a camping magazine and talking about their winter camping dreams. However, their chat quickly spirals downward once they see the prices for the equipment in the magazine. And this prompts Chiaki to question why everyday items can’t just be used for camping.

Chiaki Oogaki from the Laid-Back Camp anime series specials
Chiaki Oogaki

As expected, it turns out that there are actually reasons behind the use of specialized camping gear. For example, switchblades are safer to carry because the blades are covered in transit and sleeping bags are better than futons because they’re more compact and lightweight.

The episode culminates with the pair imagining a campsite created with everyday items which they ultimately refer to as hobo-chic. I think they’ll be sticking to the classic camping gear in the future.

Ruse Camp

Episode 2 still took place within the club room but was much better overall than the first. This time around, additional characters such as Nadeshiko, Rin, Ena, Sakura, and Akari make appearances. The episode focuses on Nadeshiko getting tricked by the other characters, specifically Aoi, Ena, and Akari.

I think this was Akari’s first appearance in the series. Or rather, I know this was her first chronological appearance in the series because Nadeshiko and Chiaki don’t know who she is at first. But what I mean is, I don’t think she was featured in Room Camp either since I watched that first.

Akari Inuyama from the Laid-Back Camp anime series specials
Akari Inuyama

Akari is Aoi’s younger sister and looks almost exactly like her except smaller and with different colored eyes. She even acts just like Aoi and uses the same facial expression when she’s attempting to trick Nadeshiko.

At the end of the episode, Ena rounds up all the other girls, except Rin, and has them impersonate Rin in an attempt to confuse Nadeshiko. Unfortunately for Ena, I don’t think her prank was quite as good as Akari pretending to be a shrunken down version of Aoi. There’s just no replacement for the one, true Shimarin.

Survival Camp

The third episode was by far the best, as well as the longest, of the three. Incidentally, it was also the only one that didn’t take place within the club room — there’s definitely some correlation there. Instead, this episode took place on a deserted island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean (about a mile off the coast of Japan).

What was supposed to be a relaxing camping holiday in Australia for Nadeshiko, Rin, Ena, Chiaki, and Aoi turned into a nightmare. Or, it almost did. After their airplane suffered a minor malfunction, the girls decided to jump out over the open ocean, because why not? Luckily, they landed on a tropical island and had a nice time camping there instead.

Rin Shima jumping out of a plane from the Laid-Back Camp anime series specials
Rin Shima jumping out of a plane

As for the highlights of this episode, the best one came during the plane malfunction. If you’re unsure about whether to watch these specials, please at least watch this third episode specifically for the plane malfunction scene. It’s quite possibly the best piece of Laid-Back Camp content I’ve seen, rivaled only by Rin getting attacked by a bear that one time.

The second and third highlights of the episode are so close that they could go either way. First, Chiaki becomes the lord of the bananas. We don’t know where she found so many bananas, but she claims that they spoke to her. Second, Rin catches a large fish. That’s it. That’s the highlight.

Despite the fact that Rin is my favorite character, I think I’m going to put Chiaki, lord of the bananas, in second place after the airplane malfunction scene. And since Chiaki played a fairly large role in that scene as well, I guess she also wins the prize for the most entertaining character of the specials.

Conclusion

I think I’m going to give the Laid-Back Camp Specials a 7/10. The first episode was pretty weak, but the next two really made up for it, especially since the first episode was also the shortest. It’s just too bad that the Room Camp short series was based on the first special episode and not the third.

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

Finally, I’d like to thank HeavyROMAN for supporting DoubleSama.com at the Heika tier this month. To learn more about how you too can become a supporter of this blog, check out Patreon.com/DoubleSama.

Room Camp

Room Camp

Room Camp anime series cover art
Room Camp

Series Overview

Room Camp (Heya Camp△ / へやキャン△) is a short series spin-off of Laid-Back Camp. There are 12 episodes, and each episode is three minutes in length — so you can watch the whole thing in about half an hour. Unfortunately, that’s about the only good thing I have to say about this series.

Generally speaking, short series are never as good as full length series. There are a few cases in which episodes being only a couple minutes long is a benefit, such as with Space Patrol Luluco, but even the episodes of that series are more than twice as long as those of Room Camp.

The main problem with shorts is that they simply don’t have enough time to actually do anything meaningful. But, I’m not trying to say that I expected Room Camp to be anything more than what it is. From the start it was clear that this is merely an add-on to the main series and isn’t meant to be viewed in a vacuum.

However, as I’ll discuss later on, the fact that this series isn’t meant to be viewed on its own is both a blessing and a curse.

Aoi, Nadeshiko, and Chiaki in the club room from the anime series Room Camp
Aoi, Nadeshiko, and Chiaki in the club room

The series focuses on a “stamp rally,” which is basically just a tourism board gimmick targeted at children to get people to visit various locations around the region. You get a booklet which has all the stamp locations marked in it, and you go to those locations and get the spot in the book stamped by the official stamp there.

Chiaki and Aoi decide it would be a good idea for Nadeshiko to complete the local stamp rally because she’s new to the region. And according to them, there’s a one-year supply of food as a prize for its completion.

Character Selection

With such a short run time per episode, it’s no wonder that the cast of characters had to be reduced compared to the main series. Instead of there being five main girls, Room Camp only focuses on the three official members of the Outdoor Activities Club.

These are Nadeshiko Kagamihara, Aoi Inuyama, and Chiaki Oogaki.

I know a lot of people like these three characters, and I do too, but I also think these are the worst three characters of the original series. Ena Saitou and, more importantly, Rin “Shimarin” Shima are my favorites. These two do still have some small cameos in Room Camp, but that’s the extent of their involvement.

Comparison to Laid-Back Camp

So now we get to the main portion of the review, which is the comparison between Room Camp and Laid-Back Camp. As I’ve already stated, Laid-Back Camp is the superior show, but that’s to be expected considering Room Camp is a supplementary short.

However, where I think Room Camp really fails is that it’s not about camping. The whole series revolves around this stamp rally, which is fine, I guess, but it’s not anything special. We just follow our three main characters to various random spots, such as a shrine.

I know that some people will argue that both Room Camp and Laid-Back Camp are more about the characters than anything else, and I typically would too for a slice of life series. But once the camping was removed, there’s just not much interesting content.

Chiaki, Nadeshiko, and Aoi relaxing from the anime series Room Camp
Chiaki, Nadeshiko, and Aoi relaxing

What I liked about Laid-Back Camp wasn’t just the characters. I liked watching the characters go camping. Camping is what they’re passionate about, and that’s really what made that series interesting and helped it stand out. Without that, Room Camp isn’t anything unique.

Additionally, Laid-Back Camp would sprinkle in camping tutorials, which, while I’ll never use them, were a fun little gimmick for the series. I think there was maybe one of those camping tips featured throughout all of Room Camp — because it’s not about camping.

And the last thing I’ll say in favor of Laid-Back Camp over this spin-off is that the scenic art was better. For me, one of the main draws of that series were the landscapes. While we still get some of those in this series — it is the same art style and everything, after all — they really aren’t the focus, and they’re generally less “nature-y.”

Aside from the obligatory shots of Mt. Fuji, a lot of the scenery in this short is man-made. With the removal of the camping aspect, so too was the connection to the outdoors somewhat removed.

Conclusion

Room Camp is a 5/10 from me. I did like watching it, but it’s nothing special and definitely worse than the main series it’s built upon. It all but removed my favorite characters, and also distanced itself from the camping theme which made Laid-Back Camp so interesting to watch to begin with.

Also, since it’s a short, the opening and ending theme are combined into one. The song for this OP/ED is good, and I like how it has the lyrics “happy Monday” and the series aired on Mondays, but it’s not as good as the OP/ED of the full series.

If you liked Laid-Back Camp, you’ll probably still like Room Camp, but don’t expect it to be as good — it’s not the second season, after all. And if you watched Room Camp without first watching Laid-Back Camp for some reason, I suggest you go watch the main series for a better experience.

Speaking of the second season, I think it’s meant to air during the winter season of 2021. However, due to current events, I could see it getting pushed back to winter of 2022. I think if they miss the winter deadline, they’ll hold off until the next winter, because they seem to purposefully release this anime during winter seasons.

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

Finally, I’d like to thank HeavyROMAN for supporting DoubleSama.com at the Heika tier this month. To learn more about how you too can become a supporter of this blog, check out Patreon.com/DoubleSama.

My review of the Laid-Back Camp Specials, including Room Camp episode 0, is available here.

Laid-Back Camp

Laid-Back Camp

Laid-Back Camp anime cover art featuring main characters
Laid-Back Camp Cover Art

Overview

Laid-Back camp is the first anime on my Winter 2018 watch list to be completed. This is a cozy slice of life anime about girls who like to go camping in the winter. There’s not really any plot, it’s just cute girls go camping, and that’s perfectly fine.

It’s slice of life genre anime like this that I have the hardest time writing about because I can’t just resort to a summary, so I’ll try to actually review other parts of it. The character design, for one, is probably my favorite part of this series. Not just because I like how the characters look, but because their outfits are functional as well.

If you’re going camping in the middle of winter, you want to make sure you’re warm, and that’s exactly how these girls look with their bundled up clothing. Also, although the atmosphere of the show is supposedly cold, for the most part, it feels warm when you watch it.

I’m sure I’m not explaining this very well, but if you watch this series you’ll know what I mean.

Throughout the series there are also various random winter camping tips and tricks which are explained by a non-character narrator. This, combined with the fact that all of the campsites and various scenic spots in the show are real places makes the viewer almost want to go winter camping themself. But I’ll stay indoors where it’s nice and comfy and watch more anime instead.

Characters

One of the two main characters of the series is Nadeshiko Kagamihara. She’s the super energetic and somewhat annoying main character who loves food. Kind of like Naruto. While I don’t like her too much as a character, she does contrast well with the other main character of the series.

Nadeshiko is the new kid on the block. She originally wasn’t into camping, but after getting lost and spending some time with Rin at her campsite, Nadeshiko decides to join the Outdoor Activities Club at her new school.

Rin Shima, also known as Shimarin, is the opposite of Nadeshiko. She’s been camping for a long time, but prefers to go solo camping instead of camping with other people, which is why she isn’t a member of the Outdoor Activities Club. Rin is the one who puts the “laid-back” in Laid-Back Camping.

Of all the characters in this series, Rin is definitely my favorite. She has a good character design, and her relaxed attitude just adds to the cozy nature of the show. She also has a good sense of humor that isn’t carried by a character trope like with Nadeshiko.

The other two characters who are in the Outdoor Activities Club with Nadeshiko are Chiaki Oogaki and Aoi Inuyama. Chiaki is the more energetic of the two and is also the leader of the club. Aoi, on the other hand, just seems to go with the flow.

The final character in the main group is Ena Saitou. Ena is one of Rin’s friends and frequently tries to get Rin to interact with the other girls, mainly Nadeshiko. She also has a chihuahua named Chikuwa.

Rin Shima, or Shimarin, from the anime Laid-Back Camp
Rin Shima

Conclusion

There were quite a few good anime this season, but although Laid-Back Camp isn’t my highest rated, it was one of my favorites of the season. In the end it’s a solid 7/10.

For anyone who has yet to watch any anime from the Winter 2018 season, this is definitely one of my recommendations if you just want something that’s relaxing to watch.

If you’re looking for more Laid-Back Camp content, I have a review of the specials, the short-form spin-off Room Camp, and Laid-Back Camp Season 2.

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