Man, I am bad at getting things done. I’ve had this watched for about a week now and kept putting this post off. Anyway, we’re going to be dealing with spoilers for the entire Tiger and Bunny series, so go give it a watch before you read on. Also, considering I covered all the technical stuff in part one, I’m just gonna be talking story and characters this time around.
Where can I really start with the second half of this? Tiger and Bunny start being slightly less of an asshole to one another and climb the rankings like nothin’, Keith Goodman’s (Sky High) fallen from his former ‘King of Heroes’ position, and something is going on with Tiger’s powers. And that’s only the first few episodes! I loved how it slowly began to pull away from the superheroics side of being a superhero and focused on the more ‘normal’ side. Seeing Kotetsu retire, or at least consider retiring, was unexpected. It’s nice to see how his family handles everything, too.
Then everything goes from fairly happy, if a bit bittersweet (Kotetsu slowly losing his powers and all) to… really, really dark. We find out that Lunatic’s father is not only Mr. Legend, but also lost his powers, which led to alcoholism. Which led to abuse. Which led to Lunatic (the Stirnbild City judge, Yuri Petrov) trying to stop, then ending up killing, his own father. Calling it ‘dark and unexpected’ is like calling water ‘wet.’ It was definitely unexpected and Lunatic becomes more of a warped, twisted hero than a mindless villain.
Also, we find out that Jake didn’t kill Barnaby’s parents. See, this is where being really good at guessing gets me in trouble. If you’ve ignored the spoiler warning and read on anyway, stop right now and go watch the series, okay?
Well, anyway, a few episodes before the reveal (as indicated in my reviewer’s notes), I completely called it that Maverick was responsible. I don’t know why, but he always gave me this weird feeling and it didn’t help that Barnaby’s memories of his parents’ death kept changing. It was honestly less of a shock than it should have been that Maverick did it, but the motivation for it… Man, I thought Maverick did it out of jealousy of not having his own family or something, but… Nope. He was a complete monster, through and through. I’ve never hated a villain quite like him.
Which brings us to the end of the series. Kotetsu is framed for killing Samantha, everyone’s memories are altered to believe this is how it happened, and – in a genuinely surprising moment – Lunatic of all people steps in to defend Kotetsu. After dealing with the other heroes, Kotetsu tries to reason with a brainwashed Barnaby, which goes about as well as you’d expect, given he believed Kotetsu killed the closest thing he had to family.
Rotwang showing up in the climax was… strange. It honestly seemed like he’d died in his debuting episode, but nope he’s fine and dandy. And incredibly racist against NEXT. I mean, he badmouthed them in front of Maverick. Did he really not know about Maverick being one, too? Whatever, Rotwang ended up likely-dead and everything went well. … Well, except for Maverick. The victory at the end felt hollow. Sure, Maverick was horribly murdered by Lunatic, but he had completely destroyed his brain before. He was a shell and Ouroboros didn’t lose a single secret. Maverick didn’t even fear his death, he just stared vacantly. Brilliant move on the writers, though.
Finally, we get an epilogue a year or so later. I don’t know why, but I always like it went we go out on a ‘where are they now’ note. Kotetsu goes back to being a hero, despite his powers going down to only one minute. Ben becomes … president, I want to say? of Kotetsu’s company. And, of course, Ouroboros is still around as the final scene shows their symbol on a dollar bill.
All in all, Tiger and Bunny was an excellent show. It took some big risks (middle-aged protagonist in an industry dominated by teens, for instance) and they paid off like crazy. The studio really delivered and I can’t wait for the movie to come out. Again, sorry this all took so long to get out, and thanks for reading. Have a good’un.
Oh, right. I know there’s a lot of stuff I just haven’t covered here, such as Kriem’s backstory and Rotwang’s first appearence, so please enjoy these reviewer’s notes. There’s some pretty strong language and the thoughts are a bit disjointed. Writing at three AM does that. Now, I’ll leave you with Kotetsu riding a tiger.