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Maoyu - First Thoughts PDF Print E-mail
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Meanderings
Friday, 04 January 2013 22:26
Fifteen years have passed since the start of the war between humans and demon. A small band of warriors have set out to defeat the Demon King, but when the Hero, all alone reaches his target, he gets more than he expected: for such a large castle, it's mysteriously empty, and when he reaches the centre of the complex - expecting to find the Demon King there - he stumbles instead upon a rather nice pair of breasts, belonging to an extremely attractive woman. Who claims to be the Demon King...


Well, this was a pleasant surprise. I was expecting standard fantasy fare with a large dose of fanservice, but instead I got an episode of the Demon King (Ami Hoshizumi) and the Hero (Jun Fukuyama) sitting around and discussing the economic impact of war - and how that had been used to create a situation where it was better for the Powers That Be on both sides to allow the war to continue, than to deal with the aftermath of it ending. Fascinating stuff. Those who know their VAs better than me will probably notice that the two leads have previously played Holo and Kraft in Spice and Wolf - which for me is downright aural paradise. On that front alone: more, please.

The subject matter isn't exactly lightweight, and depending on your politics and your views of the place of the military in the world you may well find yourself nodding in agreement at a lot of what the Demon King says & how she's decided to try and bring about a peace that neither side can corrupt. You could also say that she's notable for just how... human she is in many ways (and it cracks me up that her demonic horns are so clearly a cosplay hairband). There are some issues ("I'm lacking in the physical attributes that the majority of males like" - you really aren't, and this isn't really the subject matter to be drawing body image issues into anyway), but I found them easily overlooked after the sheer joy of listening to Ami & Jun / Holo & Kraft / Demon King & Hero discussing the state of a fantasy world.

THE GOOD: Very nice visuals, surprising depth in ambition, and Ami Hoshizumi's voice. ::melt::

THE BAD: Fanservice - and there isn't a lot of it - feels out-of-place, as do Demon King's comments on her physical attractiveness towards the end of the episode.

First full-length episode of the season, and it exceeded expectations by a long shot. If the rest of the series lives up to the opening episode, this should be a joy to watch.

Maoyu is streamed in North America and Ireland by Crunchyroll, and in the UK (when they get themselves sorted out - as of writing they haven't) by Anime on Demand.


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