Earlier, I made a positive review about Itazura na Kiss, the 2013 adaptation of the similar-titled manga. Because I liked the first part so much, it didn't take much convincing for me to continue watching the sequel (which was released in 2014). However, Itazura na Kiss 2 is much different than the first season. As with many sequels, this series is a lot more inferior to the previous one.
Basically, Itazura na Kiss 2 revolves around the life of Naoki and Kotoko as newlyweds. It can certainly spark so much curiosity among fans (myself included) of the prequel. Who wouldn't want to know what happens after the couple they had been rooting for tie the knot? In the prequel, it was shown how Naoki fell in love with Kotoko. The development of their relationship can be clearly seen. So there is also an expectation that must also be the case in season 2. While there is also a development in their relationship, such as how Naoki learned about jealousy, but it isn't enough to create a watchable story.
First, even after getting married, Naoki remains a bit distant to Kotoko. True, he has become sweeter to Kotoko (most times when alone), but he's still generally mysterious and hard to read. I didn't see any more development of their closeness to each other. Second, during the many quarrels they had as a couple, Kotoko is always left feeling she loves Naoki more than he loves her. While Naoki refutes this, the story fails to prove it.
The series appears to be episodic. You can still grasp the story without watching the previous episode. Every episode seems to include a "fangirl" vying for Naoki's attention, which is a bit too silly for me. After all, Naoki is already a married man. Why can't these girls just find someone else? Even a little girl and Naoki's own cousin are ridiculously in love with Naoki. I just don't see the humor in it. It's just too silly that others do not respect their marriage at all.
In terms of the acting department, many of the cast members' performance is a bit too raw. I can somehow forgive the lack of performance in the prequel. This time, the story did not make up for the poor and awkward acting. Everything is very unconvincing.
Back in the prequel while I was watching it, I couldn't help but feel how great it is to be in love. In contrast, here in the sequel, I couldn't help but feel sorry for Kotoko. I would never want to be in her position. It's difficult to be the wife of a popular person, to be always brushed off by your husband, and to be despised by your own friends.
There are many new characters in this series. Even though the old characters do appear in the sequel, but their roles are little. I do not like the new characters at all. There are parts in the series where flashbacks from the part one is being shown. How I miss the prequel!
To sum up, this sequel is a big disappointment to me. I do not think making this sequel is a necessity. Season 1 is already great in its own right. If they were to make a third installment for the story (which I think is impossible), I would not watch it anymore.
Okay, to be fair, if there is something to praise about the show, it will have to be the opening credits. I think it's really cute.
Itazura na Kiss 2