Animenewsnetwork - The first series of Mushi-Shi aired in fall of 2005 to resounding critical praise, and a small but verdant fanbase in the west. It sold much better in Japan, however, bringing us a second season eight years after the first that makes those original cries of "masterpiece" pretty funny to me. It's not that the first run of the show didn't deserve that acclaim, not at all! It's just that I don't know what word to use for the second season now, which keeps completely blowing its preceding season out of the water in quality as each new episode tops the last one. Stylistically, it's the same old Mushi-Shi, (that's a high compliment,) but the stories are just so much better than they ever were before, and this is especially true of this week's standout return to the series: "Cushion of Grass."