The highly-anticipated second season of the television anime adaptation of Rieko Hinata and Akihiro Yamada’s fantasy novel series, “The Fire Hunter” (Hikari no Ō), has unveiled its main visual and teaser video. The new season is set to premiere in January 2024. Alongside the returning cast members, the second season introduces new characters: Yururuho / Sennen Suisei, portrayed by Manaka Iwami, and Ruri Matsuri, voiced by M.A.O.
The first season originally aired on January 14, exclusively on the premium subscription television channel WOWOW. For international audiences, Crunchyroll provided streaming services.
Directed by Junji Nishimura, known for works like “Ranma ½” and “Vladlove,” the anime is produced by Signal.MD, a studio noted for “Recovery of an MMO Junkie” and “Napping Princess.” Mamoru Oshii, renowned for classics such as “Ghost in the Shell” and “Jin-Roh – The Wolf Brigade,” is overseeing and penning the scripts.
The narrative of the novel series is situated in a world scarred by humanity’s apocalyptic Last War. Vast forests, teeming with menacing creatures and otherworldly beings, now dominate the land. Sheltered pockets of humanity struggle to survive in small fortified settlements. A perilous consequence of the war is that humans burst into flames when near even a small fire source, due to a unique weapon employed in the conflict. The only safe energy source for humans lies within the bodies of flamelings. Thus, the duty of hunting them falls to firecatchers, brave souls who venture into the heart of the great forest with their sickles. Among the firecatchers, legends speak of the “Firecatcher Lord,” prophesied to harvest the fire of the thousand-year comet, the “Wandering Spark,” which has streaked across the sky since before the Last War and now returns to Earth.
The tale commences with Tōko, a young girl from a paper-making town who stumbles into the forbidden forest, besieged by flamelings. A swift and protective flamecatcher comes to her aid. Meanwhile, in another place, Kōshi, a boy from the capital, shelters his younger sister after losing their mother to factory poison.
Hinata introduced the inaugural book of the series in December 2018, featuring illustrations by Akihiro Yamada, known for “The Twelve Kingdoms” and “RahXephon.” Since then, Hinata has continued to expand the series, releasing the fourth book in September 2020, followed by a side-story volume in December 2021.