Girls’ Last Tour Season 2 is almost a necessity if only to satisfy human curiosity. Like Made In Abyss in reverse, the goal of Chito and Yurri is to climb up all the way to the highest level of the city in hopes of finding food, security, and perhaps the last vestiges of humankind. Unfortunately, the ending of Episode 12 did not provide any resolution to that major plot point, so what can anime fans hope to learn from the Shoujo Shuumatsu Ryokou manga series?
During the last four years, mangaka Tsukumizu has been digitally publishing the manga series online via Kurage Bunch. As of September of 2017, publisher Shinchosha has released five volumes in tankobon format, which ends with Chapter 40. The Japanese release date for Girls’ Last Tour Volume 6 is scheduled for March 9, 2018.
Yen Press licensed the Girls’ Last Tour English translation, but so far they’re only up to Volume 3. The fourth volume is scheduled to come out on February 27, 2018, whereas the release dates for Volumes 5 and 6 have not yet been announced. However, based on history, the final two volumes should be out before the end of 2018.
The anime adaptation was made by White Fox, the studio behind Steins; Gate and Re: Zero. Those looking to immediately watch more Girls Last Tour anime episodes can jump straight to YouTube. Kadokawa’s official page released multiple episodes for a spinoff series called Shojo Shiuatsu Jugyo (Girls’ Last Class) and there are English subs available. The spin-off features Chito and Yurri attending a school in an alternative world.
Girls’ Last Tour: Ending Of Manga Creates A Problem For Shoujo Shuumatsu Ryokou Anime
All good things must come to an end and so it is with the Girls’ Last Tour manga. Creator Tsukumizu announced that Shoujo Shuumatsu Ryokou Volume 6 is going to be the ending of the entire story. The final chapter is Chapter 42 in the web version and Chapter 47 in the book volumes, which receive additional content.
Each of the anime episodes adapted two or three manga chapters without resorting to filler content, although the ordering of events was sometimes rearranged. Episode 12 of the anime adapted up to Chapter 29 of the web manga or Chapter 32 of Volume 4.
Anime fans who wish to continue the story by reading the manga should start with Chapter 33 of Volume 5. There are fan-based English translation projects but they’re based on the web manga. Unfortunately, that means English-only readers will have to wait for more volumes to be released.
If Girls’ Last Tour Season 2 is ever greenlit, the manga’s ending creates a problem for the anime adaptation since studio White Fox does not have much source material left to work with. Even if the second season adapted only two manga chapters per episode, that’s only seven episodes.
That’s not to say that hopelessness wins. Releasing the finale as a Girls’ Last Tour OVA episode is an option, but fans would probably prefer a full second season. If that happens, White Fox could release a shorter 10-episode season and have Tsukumizu write original stories to bridge the gap.
Shoujo Shuumatsu Ryokou Season 2 Release Date
As of this publishing, anime production company White Fox has not announced anything official about the Shoujo Shuumatsu Ryokou Season 2 release date, although this article will be updated as soon as the anime sequel’s premiere is confirmed. However, there can be reasonable speculation about when, or if, the Girls’ Last Tour Season 2 air date may occur.
With no manga left to promote, Japanese anime committees have to keep finances in mind. Fortunately, the Girls’ Last Tour Blu-Ray sales of Volume 1 did decently in the first week of sales. The anime ranked in the top 15 on the Oricon charts when it released in late January of 2018, but by February the series dropped off the top-selling charts. As of this article’s publishing, the series has sold 2,497 copies, which is close to making a second season financially desirable. However, the international launch of the anime was part of the now-defunct Amazon Anime Strike channel, which likely increased the anime’s profitability for the anime committee.
One good thing about the manga ending is that there’s no reason to wait. However, White Fox is already booked up for several projects. Steins; Gate 0 is coming out in April of 2018 and the studio’s only known 2019 project is Arifureta: From Commonplace to World’s Strongest. An anime adaptation of the light novel series Goblin Slayer was also announced, but the release date is unknown. Still no word on Re: Zero Season 2, unfortunately. White Fox’s busy schedule means that Girls’ Last Tour Season 2 would need to wait until 2020 unless another studio finishes the story.
Girls’ Last Tour Season 2 Spoilers
Both the anime and the manga foreshadow the final ending of the story, but fans would like a happy ending. If anything, the anime’s current ending at least ends on a happy note. While the manga’s ending is not happy, it does provide limited closure since the girls do eventually reach their destination.
The mysterious fungus creatures told Chito and Yurri to head northwest to find an elevator that would take them to the highest point in the city. They do not find this tower until Chapter 38, but they have happy adventures along the way.
When Chito is injured, Yurri drives the Kettenkrad for the first time. They see new robots and explore an art museum filled with famous paintings and statues. They rescue a large painting which seems to depict war and alien beings. Yurri draws her own painting and leaves it hanging as the last picture drawn by humanity.
While washing their clothing, they create temporary clothes to wear and reminiscence about the clothing of the distant past and why clothing was invented. They even find an automated tobacco plantation and try smoking. Apparently, they start hallucinating and see ghosts of the past.
Upon reaching the tower, they try to enter by breaching the wall with explosives, but when that failed a seamless door opened and a strange figure appeared. One of six holographic AI units, this poetry-loving caretaker of the lighthouse (the apparatus responsible for providing a day/night cycle) leads them to the elevator. Before sending them on their way, the AI tricks them into helping it commit suicide by activating a self-destruct code because it “wants to end already” because it does not want to face an endless, boring existence.
At the end of Volume 5, the manga also briefly shows the younger Chito and Yurri when they were living in their hometown before it was destroyed. Their grandpa helps them escape on the Kettenkrad into a pipe. Parts of this particular chapter were already adapted in the anime, but the memory connects to the present since it was grandpa who originally gave them their primary motivation by telling them to travel upward.
The caretaker AI gave them a map for finding the top level. Along the way, they run into a space exploration facility and there are hints that people from the past may have traveled beyond the solar system. A humongous library connected by elevators contains all the knowledge gathered by humankind, which causes Chito to think about their purpose.
Warning: The following contains major spoilers and should not be read unless you want to know the ending of the manga’s story.
From there, the story takes a dark turn in Volume 6 as life whittles away at hope as they suffer loss after loss. First, their vehicle, the Kettenkrad, finally breaks down beyond any repair. They memorialize their fallen comrade by turning the vehicle into a water bath in which they drink beer and sing.
Second, they throw away the gun after it becomes too heavy to carry in their packs. Chito’s precious books are next to go into the fire; literally. They even burn Chito’s personal journal except for the map. Yurri also suffers a loss since they eat their canned fish first because it’s so heavy.
Finally, their lantern goes out as they’re ascending a spiral staircase and they’re plunged into darkness. They felt as if they had returned to the darkness from which they came from. But they held hands, reminding themselves that they were still alive and together, feeling as if they were connected to the whole world.
Finally, light from above pierces their dark death march and the staircase opens up to the highest level. There, they find… absolutely nothing. Only snow on an empty plain, some large stones, and the night skies.
As they consider what to do, they look over the landscape below and ponder what it means to be happy. They even have a snowball fight! In the end, they decide to eat their last food and go to sleep, determining to figure out their plans in the morning.
And that’s how the story ends. While there’s no definitive closure, some manga readers assume that Chito and Yurri die. Others hold out hope that a deus ex machina-style event could resolve the tragedy and give a happy ending. While White Fox could choose to go with an anime original ending, the author’s goal was not to provide closure.
Besides being a slice of life story about the end of the world, the overall theme of the manga is the inevitably of death. The story is literally about the girls’ last tour of the Earth and how people respond to their fate. While dwelling on mortality might pitter away into nihilistic despair, the manga always managed to pull away from the brink.
“Let’s get along with the feeling of hopelessness,” Yurri said at one point, only to ponder again later. “Even if there isn’t a meaning or whatever, there are good things once a while.”
Other GLT characters pointed out that life is more about finding and enjoying a journey rather than reaching a destination (ignore those convenient signs!). The cartographer Kanazawa found meaning in creating maps of the city and Ishii decided to create an airplane to escape the city.
“True hopelessness is not having anywhere to go, right?” asked Ishii. “You’ll just end up dying along with this city.”
The point of the story is not to offer a happy ending for the girls, nor is the focus on fighting the apocalypse. Instead, the point is to showcase how to face the end when it comes. The girls could have wallowed in bitterness because of their situation. Instead, they treated their mundane moments together as being precious, finding hope amidst the despair.
Similarly, anime fans could choose to hope that Girls’ Last Tour Season 2 is eventually animated. Stay tuned!