Ayumu MuraseChinatsu AkasakiShinnosuke TachibanaHow Not to Summon a Demon Lord
How Not to Summon a Demon Lord Omega
Episode 1 also reviewed here: Anime 1st episodes 2021: H
Also known as: Isekai Maou to Shoukan Shoujo no Dorei Majutsu Omega
Medium: TV, series
Year: 2021
Director: Satoshi Kuwabara
Writer: Kazuyuki Fudeyasu
Original creator: Yukiya Murasaki
Actor: Akane Fujita, Aoi Koga, Ayumu Murase, Azumi Waki, Chinatsu Akasaki, Fumiko Uchimura, Kazuhiro Yamaji, Kazuyuki Okitsu, Kousuke Toriumi, Masaaki Mizunaka, Miku Ito, Shinnosuke Tachibana, Yu Serizawa
Keywords: How Not to Summon a Demon Lord, fantasy, anime, MMORPG, boobs
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Format: Season Two: 13-22
Url: http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/anime.php?id=23505
Website category: Anime 2021
Review date: 1 November 2022
Isekai Maou to Shoukan Shoujo no Dorei Majutsu
It's shameless and has a ton of bullshit that needs squinting past, but I enjoyed it.
The premise combines two wet dream nerd fantasies: (a) a protagonist who's absurdly powerful from the start and can single-handedly crush entire armies, (b) the harem genre, with a chaste male hero and lots of hot, buxom women who are infatuated with him and keep getting naked-ish in his presence.
Also, it's an isekai, i.e. the century's most overused anime genre. Season 1 also made a thing of the girls literally being the hero's slaves, although nobody mentions that this year.
Fortunately, though, the show has saving graces. The first is the protagonist, Diablo. Everyone else thinks he's a swaggering ultra-macho demon lord who talks to everyone as if they're worms. We know that he's a pathetic virgin nerd who got transported to this fantasy world, is scared of talking to people and can only achieve it by roleplaying. This is quite funny.
The other is that I quite like the season's story arc. Diablo and the girls run into Lumachina Weselia, a high priestess who's being pursued by assassins sent by her own church superiors. This is a pseudo-medieval fantasy world, so that's a big deal. The church is powerful. Mere countries can't punish its cardinals. Our heroes help her... and, perhaps surprisingly, what unfolds is an actual story, with a plot and meaningful opposition. Diablo can't just steamroller everything by virtue of turning up (although he does inflict one ludicrously one-sided stomping in ep.6). He makes powerful enemies, with one who nearly beats him in ep.3 and another who's only beaten in the season finale with help from everyone, including the assembled faithful.
I also like the way the story takes its religion seriously. You can't convince believers just by winning a fight. There's light theological debate and a laugh-out-loud backfiring bluff in ep.9. Also, Lumachina is a genuinely good person. I liked her perspectives and the fact that ep.10 takes the trouble to save a briefly-glimpsed character we'd forgotten from ep.1.
This also clashes with Diablo's identity. He's a Demon Lord, claiming to be an evil destroyer and conqueror. (He's not really, underneath, but he has a friend who is and is capable of wanting to destroy a city because she hasn't had her biscuits.) In practice, the show's not really interested in evil heroes, but one of this year's new girls (Rose) could have walked in from Overlord.
The supporting cast is fine. I'm not convinced that Rem and Shera are the show's most interesting girls, but they've been there from the beginning and they're clearly the core cast. (Krebskulm and Celestine are quite funny, but they get ditched in ep.1 for the sake of adding yet more new girls to the harem.) Lumachina is noble. Horn gets a surprising amount of plot time. There's my new favourite, Rose, a devoted but aggressively evil robot girl who weighs about half a ton and has battery charging issues. And then, of course, there are lots of other returning and new characters who show up to remind us of their mighty bust size. Ep.7 has quite a headcount of old friends.
There are lots and lots of scenes where Diablo freaks while girls undress sexily for some contrived reason or another. (But the camera never shows nipples.) If you don't think you'd be able to stomach all that, avoid this show.
I think it's fun. Shamelessly exploitative nerd wank escapism, but fun. Diablo's overpowered, sure, but at least he's facing real opposition, unlike some overpowered-hero isekai (e.g. That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime). It's a perfectly good light adventure. Likeable heroes, meaningful baddies, some comedy, fun adventure... yeah, I'm up for that. The silly sleaze is eye-rolling, but I can live with it.