Note: This article is very long, with many screenshots covered, and there will be spoilers for the 1st season.
Hello guys to the second and final part of the special series Theme Song Analysis, and this time I’ll be doing the ending theme song sung by the voice actors of the two main characters – Sakaki Yuya and Akaba Reiji. Lyrics and video are available in this article: https://stardustjunction.wordpress.com/2014/11/09/arc-v-ed-2-lyrics-video-future-fighter/
Personally I like this song a little less than the opening and the first ending song. While the idea of having the characters do a duet is definitely great, the tune isn’t too memorable and the lyrics are a bit too repetitive. However, the singing voices are certainly pleasant, and the visuals once again stood out.
The beginning to the song is a long-drawn scene depicting Yuya riding on his Odd-Eyes Pendulum Monster, on the way to Maiami City. I must say though, the background artists do an awesome job in drawing the city landscape. The landscape in this scene reminds me a lot of Neo Domino City from the Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s anime, and is probably because the directors for both series are the same person.
Then the camera zooms to Yuya, and his friends and family appear behind him, as if giving him support to move on. All while Yuya sings his first two lines. Not really a lot that could be told from here though.
Funny thing to note though, that Sora appears here as a “friend” of Yuya, but not in the opening where he is shown together with the LDS members.
Following that, we cut to the LDS side of matters. Accompanied by Reiji’s voice singing about “perfection” and “pride”, this shot depicts the three LDS members, Sawatari, Reiji and finally Shun who appears facing another direction. I’m guessing this refers to the fact that while Shun works with Reiji in this tournament, he is still quite doubtful about the prideful CEO, hence the two people’s directions.
Then we come to my favorite scene of this theme song – Yuzu gazing at her bracelet while Yuya and Yuuto walk by her. Then the two male heroes walk together, slowly fusing together then all of a sudden! They disappear and Yuzu turns around, already in tears.
I love this scene not only because it definitely hints at a darker plot in the future, but also because of how important the creative team of the anime regard Yuzu as. Female protagonists usually don’t really have much of a role in previous series (except for first season 5D’s), but in ARC-V it’s refreshing to see such a character with such an important relation to the overall plot. The shot where Yuzu cries hints at her having an emotionally fragile side despite her usual behavior on the surface, and it’s certainly a plus point for the character.
Assuming that this scene is foreshadowing at a future event in the plot of the series, my speculation is that Yuya and Yuuto would fuse together without Yuzu’s bracelet. In other words, Yuzu’s plot device prevents the two heroes from merging into a single person, hence why the bracelet would transport Yuuto away when Yuya is nearby in previous episodes. At some point in the show, I’m guessing that Yuuto and Yuya would meet and fuse. Yuzu would be unable to find both of them, and eventually suffer from an emotional breakdown.
But what is perhaps even more interesting is this split-second frame:
Correct, the background for the first image is Heartland Tower from Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal. Previously in Episode 18, there are subtle hints that Yuuto and Shun come from Heartland, but there are also speculations dismissing that as merely a Zexal Easter Egg. With this and the title of Episode 33 (Future Metropolis Heartland), I think it’s pretty clear that the writers are intending to introduce Heartland City in this series as well.
Cue cut to a scene depicting Shun vs Sora, with two new potential ace monsters for Shun covered in black:
…and also Sora seemingly cringing:
I must say though, Sora looks evil in this shot. Could be hinting at something, or he is simply struggling during the duel.
This is then followed by a shot of Yuya facing Sawatari with his Daibakaze.
Following that, we go back to Yuya riding on his Odd-Eyes at the very beginning. The sky has already turned bright, and Yuya finds that all his friends and family are cheering for him at the front.
Then, as the duet sings each line of “Never give up!” we get one new frame of Yuya with his monsters.
Cue to the final scene, where Yuya and his pals watch at the sky as a Pendulum draws an arc across it.
And that’s the whole ending theme! Thank you guys for reading through this long post and be sure to tune in to this special series once more when the next season comes with a new set of theme songs!