We move into the second round, where some of the competitors have been weeded out, the rounds and time between them are shorter, and we start to get a little tired of some of the songs already presented. The five polls have already been set up, and I’ll try to get to them as fast as I can, starting with the first two brackets here.
Kimi no Shiranai Monogatari (Bakemonogatari ED)
staple stable (Bakemonogatari OP 1):
A first round win wasn’t a surprise for either of these songs, and neither should this second round win be as well. Even as we get deeper into the Monogatari franchise, this ending song with its interesting animation, supercell supercell (yes.), and emotional power sticks in people’s minds. As such, the more “shallow” first opening of Bakemonogatari gets trodden under the main ending’s hooves.
Which Do I Want to Win: staple stable
Which Do I Think Will Win: Kimi no Shiranai Monogatari
Why? Memories and song quality. While supercell’s work can feel like a lot of stuff is unnecessarily thrown in there for me, most songs still come out stronger in tone than more ‘generic sounding songs’, where “staple stable” suffers from that.
Nippon Egao Hyakkei (Joshiraku ED)
futuristic imagination (Eden of The East ED)
I was pleasantly surprised that most voters enjoyed the shamisen-filled stylings of Momoiro Clover Z having fun for the song to beat what I thought was a strong competitor in “♥Lonely in Gorgeous♥”, and wasn’t surprised that the Eden of the East ending would take care of their matchup at the expense of one of my favorite songs in the tourney. I still think that the polish of “futuristic imagination” would win this matchup, as I’m not sure how patient voters are with a song that goes all over the place.
Which Do I Want to Win: Nippon Egao Hyakkei
Which Do I Think Will Win: futuristic imagination
Why? Familiarity and song quality, but I’ve been pleasantly wrong about this song before.
Platinum Disco (Nisemonogatari ED 3)
Yume no Shima Shinen Kouen (Paranoia Agent OP)
Both songs here were ones that I expected to be here, and they again provide a nice contrast against each other as their did their competition in the first round. In this case, the Paranoia Agent opening with Hirasawa being Hirasawa (electronica-ish, odd melodies, his voice) is at a disadvantage against “Platinum Disco”, as the latter keeps things simple, relatively easy to listen to, and especially sticks in your head.
Which Do I Want to Win: Platinum Disco
Which Do I Think Will Win: Platinum Disco
Because disco never dies Familiarity and song style.
Re-sublimity (Kannazuki no Miko OP)
Resuscitated Hope (Gosick ED)
This is one where I was very surprised to see the I’ve sound-stylings of “Re-sublimity” make it into this round as I assumed that Fate/Zero‘s popularity would be enough to push “oath sign” into the forefront. I was disappointed that the “want to be hardcore” stylings of the Gosick ending took out a Kanno-Sakamoto combination, as the former song does not sound like it’s trying too hard. And yet…
Which Do I Want to Win: Re-Sublimity
Which Do I Think Will Win: Resuscitated Hope
Why? Familiarity/popularity and song style. If “Red Fraction” did not get through, I doubt that “Re-Sublimity”‘s trance stylings would be enough to take down a more accessible rock song from “Resuscitated Hope”.
Tank! (Cowboy Bebop OP)
LEVEL5-judgelight- (To Aru Kagaku no Railgun OP 2)
It’s Tank! Come on. While “LEVEL5-judgelight-” did well in beating a rocking song in “Storywriter” to get here, it will be beaten by one of the iconic tracks out there in anime.
Which Do I Want to Win: Tank!
Which Do I Think Will Win: Tank!
Why? I think it’s time to blow this scene. Get everybody and their stuff together.
Days of Dash (Sakurasou no Pet na Kanojo ED 1)
Fly Away (Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt insert song)
For me “Days of Dash” annoyingly (I say that because generic pop is hard to give a YAY vote for me in most aspects) beat out one of The Pillows’ staples (and one of my favorite songs of the FLCL soundtrack), and “Fly Away”s dance took out opera rock (which I don’t think anyone would be ready for out of the blue). That being said, “Fly Away” is repetitive and hard to continue listening to, while “Days of Dash” is forgettable.
Which Do I Want to Win: Push. I don’t particularly care for either song here.
Which Do I Think Will Win: Days of Dash
Why? Recency bias and song style. I don’t think as a song it has what it takes to take care of many other of the remaining songs here, but “Days of Dash” is easy to get into, and wins in that regard, I guess.
Shounen yo Ware ni Kaere (Mawaru Penguindrum OP 2)
Tsurezure Monochrome (Tsuritama OP)
The initially desperate tone of “Shounen yo Ware ni Kaere”, as well as Etsuko’s vocals and the song length (despite the change in tone 2/3rds of the way through the song) to me is no match for the happy, ‘Fun in the Sun’ vibe for Tsuritama‘s opening. For me. But I think Mawaru Penguindrum was more well-known of the two shows, and I think that’s what puts it over the top here.
Which Do I Want to Win: Tsurezure Monochrome
Which Do I Think Will Win: Shounen yo Ware ni Kaere
Why? Well, the above, and that people don’t like being happy.
Hybrid Rainbow (FLCL Insert Song)
Euforia (ARIA The Natural OP 1)
BBR1P8 was the first poll where I realized that people liked ARIA more than I thought (at least in regards to many of the voters in this tournament), as I don’t think that “Euforia” was a particularly strong song for Yui Makino, or in general (or maybe people have more tolerance for an R&B-ish song than I would expect). But it goes up against probably the strongest song in FLCL’s soundtrack (at least, my favorite song) in “Hybrid Rainbow”, and the emotion in this latter song overwhelms the more subdued warmth of the former song.
Which Do I Want to Win: Hybrid Rainbow
Which Do I Think Will Win: Hybrid Rainbow
Why? Familiarity. I can still feel it.
Until Next Time.