Vinland Saga Season 2 Episode 1: Slave Review
The anime is set to air for 24 episodes
Vinland Saga’s Season 2 is here, and we’re all for it! For us, this much-awaited sequel is a strong anime of the year contender, if the anime hits the nail on the story.
As manga readers, we came in with strong expectations from Studio MAPPA, who have built a strong track record recently.
Without any further ado, let’s take a look at the episode in detail:
Since Vinland Saga season 2 is extremely narrative-driven, let’s take a look at the approach the anime took for the first episode.
Any manga fan would’ve noticed that the second season starts off differently from the manga. In the manga, we start with Thorfinn on Ketil’s Farn. Whereas, in the anime, we get Einar’s backstory first, with anime-original scenes.
To our anime-only fans, this is nothing to fret over! The first season of Vinland Saga, by WIT Studio had similar pacing changes too. This is because the sequences in the manga can be confusing, and this approach is better for a more mainstream medium like anime.
In the first episode, we see Einar’s life as a farmer in Northern England, and his tragic downfall into slavery. In the classic Vinland style, things went from zero to a hundred real quick.
Many fans might not like Einar, as he isn’t heroic. But, the first episode’s purpose was to set Einar as a big man, who’s just as sensitive as anyone else.
The anime-original section of his conversation with his mother is the most important part of the episode. Here, there’s a clear parallel between Thors and Einar’s mother. Both of them believe that love is the answer their children seek.
By the end of the episode, the dynamics are set for Einar and Thorfinn to go through their character arcs simultaneously as they deal with their losses.
Both of them have lost the reason to live, but their reason couldn’t be more different!
We also have to commend the studio for their addition of the nordic poem at the start of the episode, and the quote in the middle of the episode. They sent shivers down my spine!
So far, the animation has been perfect. We knew that the anime was in good hands as the season one team was working on the sequel, and they did not disappoint!
The scenic shot of Ketil’s farm, Einar’s village, and the pillaging were breathtaking. The use of CG was just fine and actually improved from the previous season.
And, the approach to the sea was one of the best decisions the studio made!
The character design and models are on point and perfectly represent the manga. During the opening and ending sequences, we saw some truly jaw-dropping visuals. This is extremely promising, as the anime definitely needs these in the later episodes.
Other than that, both the opening and ending sequences make me fall in love with the series all over again!
The casting for Einar and Ketil, two of the most prominent characters in the season was done well. The voices complement the faces and personalities.
The scene where Einar was raging inside was spine-shivering. His screams as the seas roar and the village are destroyed pierced through our hearts.
Vinland Saga Season 2 is one of the most anticipated animes of the year, and it seems like MAPPA will do it justice.
With the anime being 24 episodes, I believe that we’re set for a good season as the arc in the manga was 44 chapters only.
This is a solid first episode and a tone-setter for the anime, leaving fans craving for more!