The first two seasons of Kaguya-sama: Love is War have been some of the greatest examples of well-written romantic comedies we’ve seen in recent years. It isn’t an exaggeration to say that everything thus far has hit a homerun. The characters, the animation, the music, the comedic timing, all of it works together to create one of the most enjoyable rom-coms of all time.
And somehow, someway, season three didn’t just manage to reach the bar its predecessors set. It surpassed it. Not only that, but it launched an already successful and popular show and made it an all-time great! Hell, it’s the only anime to ever surpass Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood on myanimelist.net
Even if only briefly. FMA:B fans are a little too devoted to that show.
With the sports festival behind them, the Student Council of Shuchin Academy carry with their lives. Despite their best efforts, neither Shirogane nor Kaguya are any closer to making the other confess their feelings. Luckily for them, the Culture Festival is fast approaching. Unfortunately, with their futures drawing ever closer, their chances of romance are quickly slipping away. Will these two super-genius morons finally be able to swallow their prides and confess?
If you loved the first two seasons of Kaguya-sama, you’re basically guaranteed to like this one. The comedy is more of the same; absolute insanity driven by the lovable cast of morons. And this season has some pretty stand-out gags, such as the arm wrestling tournament, the entire rap episode, Ishigami’s accidental confession, and more.
And in case you were worried the more serious dramatic elements fell off: don’t you worry. This season has got some pretty powerful emotional moments to balance out the comedy and further develop the cast. Hayasaka’s arc in the early episodes of the season is truly phenomenal. Plus, the season finale treats us to a deep-dive on the true psychologies of both Kaguya and Miyuki that explains just why they’ve both gone so far in their romantic pursuits of each other.
On that subject: the finale. Avoiding spoilers, this season finale is absolutely insane! It pulls out all of the stops, perfectly blending all of the best elements of the show into the ultimate climactic moment of the story so far. It got me so damn excited and happy that I shot up in my seat and cheered in joy!
Now, as much as I don’t want to, I’m gonna get a little critical now. Because as good as this season is, there are a few glaring issues. For one, certain running jokes are starting to get pretty old; the Mama-Fujiwara gag is starting to feel pretty overused. On top of that, there are more than a few segments that setup the events to come, but don’t do so in a very interesting or funny way. To be clear, none of it is awful, but the pacing does sometimes feel like it drags. Thankfully, that issue is very minor in light of the heights this season reaches.
Animation wise, this season is just as fantastic as the last two. The show’s default style looks as good as ever, and it frequently dips into entirely different styles of animation or direction for gags or dramatic moments. It can get downright mind-boggling how far the animators will go, like the credits sequence of the rap episode and the grand finale.
The music is insanely good, as per usual. There’s a whole episode devoted to rap and the songs our favorite geniuses sing are genuine bangers. Hayasaka has three different songs this season and they’re all wonderful! Combine all that with the OST, most of which returns from the last few seasons, and you get one of the most wonderful sounding anime out there.
And I’d be loathe not to mention the voice acting. Every single member of the cast delivers their strongest performances as these characters to date! Aoi Koga is the definite highlight; her performance as Kaguya this season was genuinely stunning and consistently hilarious. Makoto Furukawa kills it once again as Shirogane and shows off his musical skills to great effect. Finally, Yumiri Hanamori delivers a wonderful performance as Hayasaka, proving herself as one of the best members of the cast once again.
I’m half tempted to go over every single one, but that would take too long. TL;DR: the voice actors are amazing and the show wouldn’t even be half as good without them.
Season three of Kaguya-sama is delightful. Yes, it can drag at times and some of the jokes are getting a bit overused. But those are small, forgettable issues in comparison to the monstrous heights it reaches with the story, the animation, the music, the acting, the everything! It’s crazy how good this show is!
I’ve loved this series since the start of the first season. But now? It’s ascended to become my favorite anime of all time! And no amount of whining from FMA:B fans will change my mind!