The Otherside Picnic Season 2 anime will have Sorawo Kamikoshi and Toriko Nishina investigating the former base of the cult that worships Satsuki Uruma. But when will Urasekai Picnic Season 2 come out?
The first season of the anime TV series was produced by Japanese animation studio LIDEN FILMS, which is known for recent anime such Blade of the Immortal, Hanebado!, and Boarding School Juliet. In Winter 2021, LIDEN FILMS also released Suppose a Kid from the Last Dungeon Boonies Moved to a Starter Town?, Hortensia Saga, and Cells At Work! CODE BLACK. They also produced the April 2021 Tokyo Revengers anime.
The project is also a collaboration with Studio Felix Films, which is known for providing animation assistance and 3D CGI on many anime. For example, they did the 3D animation for WIT Studio’s Vinland Saga, LIDEN FILMS’ Terraformars Revenge, Studio Hood’s Drifters anime, and Studio Nut’s Saga of Tanya the Evil movie.
The studio and returning staff for Otherside Picnic Season 2 hasn’t been announced yet. The first season was helmed by director Takuya Satou, who is best known for his work on Steins;Gate. Satou also wrote the series composition for Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works, so it shouldn’t be surprising that he also handled the script for the Otherside Picnic anime TV series.
Original creator Iori Miyazwa was also directly involved in the anime production. Some of the episodes were original stories written by the book author.
Ayumi Nishibata (Kuromukuro) was both the character designer and chief animation director. Kazutaka Ema (Warlords of Sigrdrifa) was the creature designer. Composer Takeshi Watanabe (To Love Ru: Darkness) wrote the music.
The Otherside Picnic Season 2 OP (opening) and ED (ending) theme song music hasn’t been announced yet.
For the first season, the Otherside Picnic OP was “Ugly Creatures (Minikui Ikimono)” by CHICO with Honeyworks, while the Urasekai Picnic ED was “You & Me” by Miki Satou.
The finale of the first season, Otherside Picnic Episode 12, released on March 22, 2021.
- Updated November 15, 2021: Otherside Picnic English dub release date confirmed!
This article provides everything that is known about Otherside Picnic Season (Urasekai Picnic Season 2) and all related news. As such, this article will be updated over time with news, rumors, and analysis. Meanwhile, let’s delve down into what is known for certain.
FUNimation’s Otherside Picnic English dub release date in Fall 2021
The first season of the anime was streaming with English subtitles on FUNimation (not Netflix, Crunchyroll, Hulu, VRV, or Amazon Prime Video).
The FUNimation Simuldub schedule initially only listed the first season as being a Simulcast, but then a dubbed version premiered near the end of 2021. Here is the English dub cast:
- Madeleine Morris as Sorawo Kamikoshi
- Emily Neves as Toriko Nishina
- Sarah Wiedenheft as Kozakura
- AmaLee as Akari Seto
- Michelle Rojas as Natsumi Ichikawa
- Z. Charles Bolton as Will Drake
- Christopher Guerrero as Ray Barker
- Billy Kametz as Greg
- Chris Wehkamp as Abarato
- Katelyn Barr as Kankandara
- Michelle Lee as Lady Hasshaku
FUNimation’s Otherside Picnic English dub release date was on November 15, 2021. All 12 dubbed episodes were released at once rather than releasing weekly.
Urasekai Picnic Season 2 release date predictions
As of the last update, Sony, Square Enix, LIDEN FILMS, or any company related to the production of the anime has not officially confirmed the Otherside Picnic Season 2 release date. Nor has the production of an Otherside Picnic sequel been announced.
Once the news is officially confirmed this article will be updated with the relevant information.
In the meantime, it’s possible to speculate about when, or if, the Urasekai Picnic Season 2 premiere date will occur in the future.
Reviews for the first season have been all over the map. Anime-only audiences seem to enjoy the anime whereas light novel/manga readers have been dunking the TV adaptation for not exactly following the source material (see below for more details). As a result, the total score is below average but in the range for most anime produced by LIDEN FILMS.
Blade of the Immortal, Boarding School Juliet, and Cells at Work! CODE BLACK are recent exceptions to this rule. Notably, none of these other anime have been renewed for a second season.
Unfortunately, Studio LIDEN FILMS has been known for producing “one and done” anime that are not renewed. Their last major sequel season was in 2016 for The Heroic Legend of Arslan and Terra Formars.
Therefore, we’ll just have to wait and see if Otherside Picnic Season 2 breaks the mold.
Otherside Picnic manga/light novel series compared to the anime
The anime TV series is based on the Otherside Picnic light novel series by author Iori Miyazawa and illustrator shirakaba. Published by Hayakawa’s Bunko JA imprint since February 2017, the book series is up to Volume 6 as of March 17, 2021.
One interesting aspect about the book series is that the author provides citations of the creepypasta used by the book.
J-Novel Club is publishing the official Otherside Picnic English translation in North America. As of December 2020, the English version was up to Volume 4: Overnight on the Otherside.
The Otherside Picnic manga series had the original creator teaming up with manga artist Eita Mizuno. Published by Square Enix’s Monthly Shonen Gangan magazine since February 2018, the Urasekai Picnic manga was up to Volume 6 (which includes Chapters 31 to 35) as of March 12, 2021.
Square Enix will begin releasing the Otherside Picnic manga’s English translation on August 31, 2021.
From a visual perspective, the anime depicted the Kunekune (or Wiggle-Waggle) as more like a staticky beast with red eyes and a gaping maw. The manga version was more surreal, appearing like a liquid distortion that broke down reality to the point that even the manga panels and speech bubbles were warped by its presence.
Anime fans have also been quite critical of the 3D animated monsters. While animating scenes with a quickly moving mob of monsters is almost always 3D in anime, if the visuals are distracting from the horror then that’s a problem.
By contrast, the abstract horror of the fat lady in Episode 4 was quite terrifying since it messes with how the mind perceives what a human body should be like.
The overall theme of the books is how a lonely, miserable girl came to find love in the midst of dodging Eldritch’s horrors. Of course, anime adaptations of light novels are always forced to cut some details.
Missing in action were Sorawo’s inner monologues, which added emotional weight to many scenes. The anime’s opening scene did show how Sorawo was indifferent to continuing life, but the books established how she was cynical and indifferent towards people in general, which explained her motivations for her actions better.
Thankfully, Episode 3 made up for the lack quite a bit. The episode was an anime original story written by the original author. While the Big Head monsters weren’t that scary, the elevator girl was a spooky surprise and the new story served the purpose of developing the relationship between Sorawo and Toriko. It also offered an original explanation for why Toriko never ran into glitches when traveling with Satsuki, which in retrospect was an obvious oversight in the books.
But the main purpose of Episode 3 seemed to be increasing the episode count to the standard 12 episodes. Instead, other Files that were more important to the Satsuki story arc could have been adapted.
Episode 6 made several odd changes. The first was that the episode title was Meat Train yet the anime doesn’t make it clear that the train has a bunch of monkeys armed with knives bloodily slaughtering the passengers. The sight is so gruesome that Sorawo is overcome by the horror and faints.
The light novel and manga also developed Sorawo’s character by having her overcome her selfishness by coming back to rescue the Pale Horse Company marines. But the anime pushes to the ending File 5: The Operation to Rescue the U.S. Forces at Kisaragi Station, which meant they literally abandoned the soldiers!
Otherside Picnic Episode 7 adapted File 6: Resort Night at the Beach of the End, while Otherside Picnic Episode 8 adapted File 7: Attack of the Ninja Cats. Otherside Picnic Episode 9 then jumped to File 10: Sannuki-san and Karateka-san of Volume 3.
Otherside Picnic Episode 10: How to Get to the Barbeque Restaurant by Elevator was another anime original story written by the book author. Besides showcasing how Sorawo was getting over her innate selfishness, it provided a bridge for Otherside Picnic Episode 11 to adapt File 5 out of order so that the U.S. soldiers weren’t forgotten.
Unfortunately, this approach meant that the anime skipped File 8: Little Bird in a Box and File 9: Yamanoke Presence. Regardless, the original story For Episode 10 established the fact that Satsuki is stalking the girls in order to set up the second season. Otherside Picnic Episode 12: Sorawo and Toriko should finish with Kankandara and the ending of File 5.
From a storytelling perspective, the anime made several major rearrangements to the plot. Each chapter corresponds to a single novel chapter, or story File, with the exception of Episodes 5 and 6, which adapted the Kisaragi Station arc from File 3, and then Episodes 12 and 12, which finished File 5. In addition, there were two anime original episodes.
The problem with rearranging the story timeline is that it messed with Sorawo’s character progression. Sorawo willingly entered the otherside of her own volition in the first two File stories, but in File 3 both girls were forcibly yanked into the otherside at night without weapons. Worse, they were stuck with trigger-happy soldiers, and by the time they escaped Sorawo had enough.
In File 4, Toriko started talking about returning to save the soldiers, never mind Satsuki, which led to the argument between the girls. The Time-Space Man’s warning to Sorawo wasn’t simply creepypasta ramblings, it represented the internal conflict she was feeling.
When she decided to go after Toriko rather than return to a normal life, the Time-Space Man’s warning about not being able to escape the otherside became true since she now desired to keep exploring. She even desired to save the soldiers so they would be removed from “her” world, which shows just how much she selfishly coveted this special space that’s reserved just for her and Toriko.
Reordering the Files so that Kisaragi Station came after the Time-Space Man meant that Sorawo and Toriko’s argument carried less weight. Suddenly, it wasn’t the first time the girls were in the otherside at night.
The anime was also forced to cut discoveries about the nature and functionality of the otherside due to the episodic format’s time constraints. Worse, the girls celebrate on the beaches of Okinawa despite having nothing to celebrate other than escaping with their lives at the expense of the soldiers.
It was good that the anime did eventually have the characters return for the soldiers, but reordering the timeline messed with the character development to the point that their motivations became awkward.
Speaking of awkward, Episodes 7 and 8 were a bit jarring due to the abrupt tonal differences. The girls keep pointing out that Otherside is supposed to be scary and creepy and yet here we are with cute ninja cats and the swimsuit fan service of the obligatory anime beach episode?
Well, technically, the books include the same plot elements, with the Volume 2 cover art featuring the girls in their swimming gear. The flirtatious mood was definitely present, but girls were originally celebrating rescuing the soldiers so it was odd how the anime showed them acting carefree rather than guilty for leaving people trapped in the otherside.
Even odder, their new guns seemingly appear out of nowhere in Okinawa since they originally procured them in the skipped story arcs. Anime audiences are apparently supposed to believe they grabbed the guns while escaping Kisaragi Station, but it’s puzzling why the anime didn’t quickly show this happening to prevent the continuity error (even the manga artist noticed this issue), never mind how the supposedly disintegrated white hat reappeared for Episode 11.
Thematically, the episodes serve the point of communicating Sorawo and Toriko’s strengthening bonds allowed them to put aside the fear that the Otherside feeds upon. But the episodes came off as cute slice-of-life antics rather than building tension until it exploded like in the books.
Of course, the tonal differences are a little bit starker when comparing the entirety of the anime against the Otherside Picnic manga and light novels. The original story has a supernatural thriller vibe that the manga duplicates, whereas the feel of the anime is more of a light-hearted comedic action romp that occasionally has some tense horror moments.
The ending of Episode 4 even turned a serious emotionally scarring moment into a gag about Kozakura being forgotten by the other girls. In the book, Kozakura is turned into a tree and can’t move despite being conscious, leaving her with a deep fear of dark places. Later on, the humor was piled on with the Tunaki/raccoon scene at the further expense of the traumatized Kozakura.
The anime also never explains that the purpose of Kozakura’s research for the medical company DS Labs is to cure people mutated by exposure to the otherside. The girls are lucky to have only an eye and hand transformed, whereas other expedition members have suffered horrible full-body mutations.
(Episode 4 also inexplicably put Toriko in a dress instead of her normal adventuring outfit.)
This main issue is caused by the quick pacing since many scenes were not given room to breathe. This problem became worse as the anime progressed since some of the File stories are longer chapters than others yet most of the Files have been given the same amount of runtime in addition to the anime padding the story with two new original stories.
Condensing the story materials essentially amounted to removing the tension from some of the episodes and diluting the sense of psychological horror. Thus the anime only partially built the appropriate sense of dread necessary to keep audiences on the edge of their seats.
On the other hand, the anime’s pacing was fairly balanced in comparison to many adaptations of light novel series. Often times a single-cour anime season of 12 episodes will breeze through five books, which is exactly what happened with LIDEN FILMS’ Last Dungeon Boonies anime in Winter 2021.
Arguably, Otherside Picnic was the better of the two productions since the pacing didn’t skip anything major. The anime added new original stories by the book author yet still offered satisfying plot resolution by ending with the soldier rescue operation. It’s also obvious that negative nitpicking reviews were mostly from critical light novel readers whereas anime-only viewers wrote of loving the suspenseful feelings generated by the TV show.
All in all, the finale, Otherside Picnic Episode 12, corresponded to light novel Volume 2: File 5.
It’s a decent stopping point since it resolves the lingering story arc regarding the U.S. soldier, thus giving a sense of closure to the story for anime audiences.
On the other hand, a better stopping point from a thematic perspective would have been File 8: Little Bird in a Box since the Operation to Rescue the U.S. Forces was written as the beginning of a book, not an ending. Worse, the anime seemed to be building up to the events of Volume 3 and then left the entire Satsuki Uruma sub-plot completely hanging.
But it could have been even worse. Adapting File 11: The Whispered Voice Requires Self-Responsibility with only one episode would have been crazy since the Whispered Voice is literally half the page count of Volume 3, never mind how the earlier Files 8 and 9 build up to the payoff. So, it’s better that this story arc is concluded with a second season (or an Otherside Picnic movie).
The good news is that the light novel series already has four volumes available for adapting into an Otherside Picnic Season 2 anime. Better yet, English-speaking book readers can jump straight into Volume 2: File 8 and then Volume 3.
Unfortunately, as of manga Volume 6: Chapter 36 the Overside Picnic manga series had finished adapting File 6: Resort Night at the World’s Edge. With the manga only halfway through adapting light novel Volume 2, it will be at least half a year before manga readers can read ahead of the anime.
Otherside Picnic Season 2 anime TV spoilers (plot summary/synopsis)
The next time we watch Sorawo and Toriko, they will be dealing with a Kotoribako, a cursed box. When they read a page from Satsuki Uruma’s notes, a phantom of the long-haired woman showed up holding the Kotoribako in her hand.
A red bird came out of the wooden box and started attacking them while aiming for Toriko. DS Lab director Youichirou Migiwa explains that the box is supposed to be under lock and key in a secluded warehouse own by them.
The cursed item causes internal damage to the organs of nearby women and children. Even with the girls in intense pain, they must solve the puzzle of the box in order to escape its danger.
Having narrowly avoided the curse of the Kotoribako, Sorawo and Toriko are back to exploring the otherside. With boxed lunches in tow, the two take their agricultural vehicle for a leisurely drive across grassy terrain, deal with the problems caused by Sorawo’s kouhai at university, and hang out at cognitive scientist Kozakura’s house.
Meanwhile, Satsuki Uruma’s shadow is watching their every move. They must deal with the Urumiluna, the greatest threat they’ve ever encountered.
But even then the threats posed by Satsuki are not over. Having been attacked by a group that worshiped Satsuki, Sorawo and Toriko head to the cult’s former base—the Farm in the Mountains.
Ninja cat-fighting karate girl Akira Seto will also be making a comeback.
The Otherside Picnic Season 2 anime will have the girls confronting new horrors in the otherside, but it will also have Sorawo and Toriko finally confronting their feelings for each other. And Kozakura trying to play as cupid only adds to the moment!
Meanwhile, a terrifying threat is closing on them. This time the threat is even scarier since it represents something personal to Sorawo this time around. And, yes, that means while the psychological horror elements are still present we’re diving down into more of Sorawo’s backstory.
Sorawo and Toriko set their sights on surviving the night in the otherside so they can plumb the depths of the other world with longer excursions. But back in the real world we’ll learn more about Toriko’s everyday life at the university.
Their adventures will include a crazy love hotel girls party, a mysterious old woman who lives in an otherside mansion, and the revival of Lady Hasshaku.
Unfortunately, anime fans will have to wait until the Otherside Picnic Season 2 release date to watch what happens next. Stay tuned!