Its been a while since I’ve done one of these, hasn’t it?
Looking back over the last few weeks, I see some eclectic musical fun, a little bit of cutesy, a sprinkling of piano pieces and a ton of jazz (why can mad never decide on ONE song?). And I think, what’s missing?
Some f****** rock. Adrenaline pumping, blood flowing, heart pounding music that makes you want to get up and shout out random Japanese phrases like “DATTEBAYO!” while beating down some baddies.
Haruka Kanata is the second opening to Naruto and really typifies the series at this point. Starting from season 2, Naruto had just done its first major arc in the Wave Nation and its back to the Konoha for the Chuunin exams. It was at this point that Naruto stopped being just a normal shounen and became the power house of manga/anime that it is today. While the first season had cemented Team 7 and each of their personalities (Kakashi, Naruto, Sasuke and Sakura), while also laying down the basics of the world, the Chuunin exams took things to another level. It introduced a plethora of interesting (and essential) characters, showed glimpses of the wider world and helped set up the plot of the overall story of Naruto. It was a very exciting time in Naruto, and debatably the best time in Naruto.
And Haruka Kanata really embraces that excitement. And I like it when an OP really reflects what’s happening in the series (which Naruto tends to do quite well). It almost spews a restless excitement. Its like Ajikan have so much energy and excitement that they had to repeat the first part of the song again. Much like L’Arc~En~Ciel, I feel that Asian Kung Fu Generation really has a good grip on shounen anime intros. Compare Haruka Kanata with Rewrite from Full Metal Alchemist, which is plays during the darker and more emotional parts of the original FMA series, and you can understand just how good Ajikan is.