The awaited Monogatari Season 2 is now upon us and to start us off is the continuation of Tsubasa Hanekawa story in Nekomonogatari White. This arc yet again shows what the series does best and is well worth your time.
It is the end of the summer holiday and a new school term is about to start. Tsubasa gets ready to walk to school but a large White Tiger suddenly appears in front of her for a moment then disappears. Worried about what just happened, she looks for Araragi but finds that he isn’t around, so she discusses it with Hitagi Senjougahara. However, not long after they start talking, her house catches fire.
Hanekawa doesn’t wish to cause her foster parents trouble so she decides to say that she is living at a friend’s house. However she ends up in the old school building where Meme used to live, but Senjougahara fully disagrees with that and invites her to stay with her for a few days. During this time, though, her other personality begins to awaken once again.
One of the most new and refreshing things about this arc is that Araragi isn’t the main character; instead we look at everything from Tsubasa’s perspective, even down to the narration which leads to some new character interaction. This is shown with the many conversations with Hitagi which all feel natural.
While I really like the witty and funny dialogue in Nekomonogatari White, it’s also used once again to figure out Hanekawa’s weaknesses and how she will grow as a character, with her troubles explored in Nekomonogatari Black, it’s really satisfying to see her develop throughout all this arc.
As mentioned, Hitagi Senjougahara is present in most of this arc and we see another side to her. While showing a tsundere attitude to Araragi most of the time, she is a lot more childish and fun when with Hanekawa and she is another reason why I really enjoyed these episodes.
Hanekawa’s character development is what makes this box-set for me; it’s well-paced and full of memorable moments in my view. Some may question what happens in the final episode but I liked the resolution. It’s worth noting once more that the arc is only five episodes long.
SHAFT seem to improve their animation in every new Monogatari series and Nekomonogatari White is another example of this. I really liked the use of background colour in the Tiger scenes; at times it was visually striking.
Extras include an omake on Tsubasa Hanekawa’s story which includes scenes from Bakemonogatari and Nekomonogatari Black, pretty good if you want to catch up on what’s happened to her throughout Monogatari. Other extras include TV spots, Trailers and Textless Openings and Endings.
I can’t really find many faults in Nekomonogatari White; it makes a fantastic start to the Monogatari Season 2 releases and is recommended.