Just recently I found out one series I rather liked during original airing, Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu (The Secret of Nogizaka Haruka), will be expiring at the end of the month on Crunchyroll. It's no surprise, I guess, as shows have expired on Crunchyroll even quicker that that before, and even in one particularly annoying case for me without warning. The licenses are not infinite and they will all eventually expire. It's still frustrating for me, though, as there is the announced third series coming for this. I have to wonder if Crunchyroll is even going to get the third series, even though they've had an extremely high success rate of acquiring TV anime sequels. If they do, I guess they expect people watching it on legal streaming for the first time to just jump into the new series without being able to try the original two series? It's happened before, definitely with Sora no Otoshimono, and for a certain period of time (can't remember how long) with even the second series of Nogizaka Haruka itself. The third series as of yet has an unconfirmed airing time (not even any estimate announced so far I think), but I was wanting to get in a rewatch of the first two series when that time was confirmed and closer at hand. Now with the first two series expiring, though, I'm getting around to it immediately with the last chance to see the legal stream approaching. I never saw the first series on Crunchyroll, and just got to finishing that today (I will be discussing the show itself a little below too). Blazing through Purezza again will come next.

I suppose there is also the possibility this is happening because one of the American anime companies has acquired the rights to the series and they may be dealing with it from now on. Can't get my hopes up too high, as that thought crossed my mind with the weird Sketchbook expiration a while back, and of course nothing ever came of that. Lots of niche titles I love on Crunchyroll may meet the same fate. A company willing to release it on home video would be a blessing to me. As much as I railed against barebones sub-only DVD in one of my previous blogs, this expiration business does remind me of one reason I would be happy to even have that for a favorite series over just streaming on Crunchyroll. Sure streaming is cheap and convenient, and easy enough to come back to for a rewatch, but what if I want to watch the series 5 or 10 years later? How about Hanasaku Iroha, from the same broadcaster/publisher as Nogizaka Haruka, which I love even more and undoubtedly want to rewatch over? Can't count on it still being there. Nice to be able to have my DVD shelf as backup in those cases. With the Geneon Universal lockup seemingly unraveling lately maybe there is some cause to believe a home video license will happen, even though it's somewhat niche. I've got other reasons besides the continued availability for hoping for it too. The subtitles of the first series are pretty subpar as I remember with Purezza, with distractingly noticeable errors and oddities throughout. If it did get licensed, maybe there's a possibility for fixed official subtitles. Having the DVD versions would be nice too, particularly with the sometimes distractingly TV-censored Purezza. The first series stream didn't seem to have that distracting censorship from what I just watched, so maybe Crunchy got the DVD versions, but I don't know.

Anyway, on to talking about the series itself. It was a great ride rewatching the original series. If one thing doesn't hold up quite as well the second time, and it already felt this way watching the second series for the first time, it's some of the romance between the two leads. Haruka is very beautiful and sweet, but her personality becomes a little uninteresting after knowing it for a while (even if still agreeable). I've always rather liked her sister Mika, who has a great fun personality, and the often-amusing maid duo, and found that still the case the second time. Haruka herself, though: I wish she had some more particularly awesome moments like that surprise one at the end of episode three. Yuuto can be frustrating at times, too. That said, I can see why I felt so highly on it after ending the first time. The first series really ends on such a perfect high-note stopping point. Sure it's not really conclusive, but I still really like it a lot. The second series's non-conclusive stopping point didn't really seem as memorable or satisfying from what I recall, but I guess I'll evaluate how I feel when I get to watching. I was pretty excited about Purezza when the simulcast was announced, and even started my paying Crunchyroll membership because of it (which I have renewed continuously ever since). It kind of disappointed me in some regards, though. Now that I'm more attuned to some of the frustrating elements of the first series while still loving it, maybe I'll look a bit more favorably on the second series? Maybe not, but it will be interesting to see. The prospect of a third series is very intriguing. If it is intended to be final, it might be a good thing for the franchise as a whole if it wraps up things very nicely. Or there may be more sequel decay... Still anticipating it regardless, and wanting to see more of the characters I like regardless of the flaws here and there.