|A well done kind of powerful main character, solid action with tactics used, main girls are good people, acceptable pacing
|Couple moments where the show goes a bit far, not going to appeal if tired of isekai shows, mysteries of the world aren't fully unraveled
Sometimes you don’t have high hopes for a show, but they end up surprising you. The isekai genre has been all over the place and I didn’t think this one sounded all that interesting. What ended up surprising me though is that this does manage to craft an enjoyable story with a good group of main characters. There is silliness, a fair amount of ecchi content, but also a nice amount of action that can surprise you and make you care about these characters. It does have a “whoa there” moment in the first episode, but past that point it’s all pretty fun without for me ever feeling like the show has gone too far. I would say if a person doesn’t want shows with ecchi content this is one to skip. But if you don’t care then you have a fairly enjoyable series that fits nicely into this genre.
This show manages to capture the overpowered main character type that we’ve seen in other shows, but balance it with a main character that does have limits to his power. And perhaps the most important is that there is a sense of danger to those close to the main character. Even if your lead is extremely powerful that doesn’t matter if those around him are still vulnerable. With this show we get a pretty well told story that wraps up nicely. There is room for this light novel adaptation to continue in the future and even if it stops here it chose a point that isn’t such a bad one to leave off on.
The setting is a pretty straight forward one for an isekai. He is sucked into a world similar to the game that the main character was playing. The show doesn’t exactly jump into the connection between the game and this world, but it’s not something that is a major issue for the story in the early going. Rather simply the story is about the main character being summoned to his world in the body of his game character Diablo. And no that isn’t the Diablo from the Blizzard game series although that would make for quite the interesting story…The story goes to some places you would normally expect. You have the main character adapting to being in this world in the body of an extremely powerful individual. How he deals with his immediate surroundings and tackles the issues that cross his path are the main focuses of the overall plot.
The issues of the two girls that summoned him (Rem and Shera) are the biggest drivers of the plot. Both of these girls had reasons to try and summon someone incredibly powerful and Diablo can’t avoid getting involved in those issues himself. I will say they do a pretty good job establishing why these two are important characters. The show gets across how serious the issues these two have are to them. They are as weighty as the slave collars they have around their necks. And yes they do have these collars because Diablo’s character has a ring that reflects magic and that reflected their slave spell back onto themselves. Apparently slavery is acceptable in this world depending on circumstance. Luckily Diablo isn’t the kind of person who actually abuses the kind of power he has over these two and instead forms a strong connection as best he can.
The story is broken down into three arcs that last about 4 episodes each. That’s pretty solid for a light novel adaptation. It feels as if they get the majority of the material from those arcs into the anime, although you know there is always stuff left out that they simply can’t fit. Enough time is spent establishing differences between this world and the game Diablo has experienced. It makes sense why Diablo is so far ahead of the majority of people in that world in terms of pure power. As a whole I enjoyed seeing the story unfold and how Diablo and the cast dealt with the threats presented. It surprised me that there were a few incidents where I wasn’t sure if Diablo, Rem, and Shera would be alright. This isn’t the kind of show I expected to feel any legitimate threat to the main characters.
With a show like this it really is the characters that have to carry it and they do a good job here. Sakamoto Takuma/Diablo is a pretty solid main character. One of the biggest issues this kind of show can have with an extremely powerful main character is whether or not he’s remotely likable. Boring is the last thing you want short of despising the person. Diablo actually works because he’s a good person at heart and doesn’t immediately get swept up in his power. He’s not the type that simply stops caring about whether or not he kills someone just because he’s in this different world. And his strength is balanced out by his severe communication issues and social anxiety.
Say what you want, but some people do struggle interacting with others. That he can use this Demon Lord persona to handle social interactions may not be what I would have gone with, it basically works here. You get inside his head pretty constantly and can understand how difficult just talking with others really is for him. He is hardly perfect. The guy at his core is a shut-in that struggles in being honest with those around him. And he can certainly has trust issues. He’s more likely to believe someone really did betray him because he’s never had people truly believe in him before. And despite being an extremely powerful person, Diablo does have to use his head. While he may mostly be using strategies and tactics he developed while playing games, he doesn’t mindlessly fight in this show. It’s brains and brawn and not simply firing massive attacks.
The other two main characters are Rem Galeu and Shera L. Greenwood. These two girls for their own reasons ended up summoning Diablo and having that slave spell backfire on them. But both are pretty entertaining individuals with their own motivations for trying to summon someone powerful in the first place. Rem’s story is one of the better emotional ones in the show. You can empathize with what she’s been living with and how she’s developed her own major trust issues. She’s the more experienced adventurer, but is used to keeping everyone at arm’s length. While some crazy things happen around/with Diablo, having someone she can truly rely on means a lot. Her growing attachment to Diablo makes sense considering her past. And I appreciate that while her relationship with Shera can be silly at times, there is a legitimate friendship there. It isn’t a stupid harem rivalry.
Shera is a pretty nice girl. Though she is very much the airhead of the group. She has her own goals and a desire for freedom. Despite ending up with this slave collar on, she is still able to pursue her goals since Diablo isn’t some evil dirtbag. She isn’t necessarily my favorite of the cast, but this elf is a pretty nice person. In a sense she’s a needed positive presence with Diablo having his social issues and Rem carrying her own trust issues. She reaches out to both these people with a bright attitude despite having her own personal problems. And yeah she’s probably the most openly flirty of the two with Diablo. But she’s also the most openly friendly with Rem. The kind of person that lets people know she cares.
The cast has a variety of antagonists and side characters. They don’t get a ton of focus, but are rather important in how they push or interact the main cast. Be it the local lord Galford who is a rather powerful individual or Edelgard who is a Fallen (antagonistic demonic species) you have people who have their own goals and those goals may seriously conflict with what Diablo/Rem/Shera want to do. But you also have more friendly side characters such as the adventurer (and good guy) Emile or the guild master Sylvie. They don’t get a ton of focus and we don’t dive into their own personal backstories in this season. But whether it is supporting in a fight or creating some issues for Diablo to deal with, they do come into play at various points in the story.
The show looks pretty solid. The action actually holds up pretty well and they do show off various kinds of spell effects. Diablo isn’t just spamming the same spells over and over in order to save animation costs. He does use what spells are needed for a specific situation. The characters look pretty good though I wouldn’t say it’s the most beautiful show of the year. It’s just enjoyable from a visual perspective. The show does have a censored vs uncensored version situation, so you can pick what you want in terms of whether you do want more or less fanservice.
While I wouldn’t say the show is showering blood everywhere, it does make clear when characters get hurt. Some are left in a pretty bloody mess or significantly scratched up. Visually I’d say the show turned out rather well. It may not reach a high level of greatness, but it definitely works out to be rather good.
The audio works pretty well also. They have a nice amount of sound effects for spells or weapon clashes. The voice acting has no major weak points from my point of view and the main cast was rather well cast. There is a small but effective distinction between how Diablo sounds when speaking and when thinking as his more honest self. I honestly think the music for the OP/ED were some of the better ones for the season behind a few other shows.
As a whole I would say this was a pretty good show. I do think in the first episode they went a bit far and might lose people, but the show as a whole was pretty good. The action holds up fairly well, the main characters are likable people, and they don’t rush the story too much. Three fairly good arcs within a single cour is pretty solid in my books. It’s a show with some comedy, action, magic, and certainly pushes the boundary a bit with some of the ecchi content.
The good thing even in that is a general sense of good feelings among the main trio. Everyone there basically likes or cares about everyone else. Rem considers Shera a friend and yet both are pretty honest with themselves about caring about Diablo. It’s the sort of harem situation (sort of) where no one feels like the obvious ‘last girl’ and you aren’t just waiting to see someone be left out by the end. And while there are a good amount of female characters around Diablo, it really is just this trio.
I would say this show is worth checking out for the first few episodes. See if it clicks or not. For me it was actually a rather enjoyable show to just sit back and watch. The main cast got good moments sprinkled throughout and they covered some major plot points for them by the end. If this is all of the series that we ever see adapted that won’t be the end of the world. A very solid A- for me.
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