Takuya SatoTetsuya KakiharaMitsuki SaigaWelcome to Demon School Iruma-kun
Welcome to Demon School! Iruma-kun (season 2)
Episode 1 also reviewed here: Anime 1st episodes 2021: W
Also known as: Mairimashita! Iruma-kun (season 2)
Medium: TV, series
Year: 2021
Director: Makoto Moriwaki
Writer: Kazuyuki Fudeyasu
Original creator: Osamu Nishi
Actor: Ayaka Asai, Ayumu Murase, Daisuke Ono, Gakuto Kajiwara, Genki Okawa, Haruna Asami, Kaede Hondo, Katsuyuki Konishi, Mitsuki Saiga, Nao Toyama, Ryohei Kimura, Ryota Ohsaka, Saori Hayami, Shinichiro Miki, Shun'ichi Toki, Takaya Kuroda, Taku Yashiro, Takuto Yoshinaga, Takuya Eguchi, Takuya Sato, Tatsuhisa Suzuki, Tetsuya Kakihara, Yoshitaka Yamaya
Keywords: Welcome to Demon School Iruma-kun, anime, fantasy
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Format: Episodes 24-44
Url: https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/anime.php?id=24018
Website category: Anime 2021
Review date: 27 February 2024
Mairimashita Iruma-kun
The show's still fun. Iruma's still going to school in Hell with all his demon friends and getting in all the same kinds of trouble. I enjoyed it. This year's theme songs are an improvement. I preferred Season 1, though.
The big problem (for me) was Wicked Phase Iruma (whom the manga's fans call Iru-mean). Apparently, he's super-popular with those fans, which is why Season 1 ended with a Iru-mean teaser to encourage everyone to watch. Personally, it made me stop watching. I'm not exaggerating. This season's early episodes stayed at the bottom of my to-watch pile and I was semi-avoiding them, even when Iruma was still his usual nice self. He turns not-actually-evil at the end of ep.5 and returns to normal at the end of ep.8, after which I happily jumped back on the show and watched the rest at normal speed.
The idea is that demons have an Evil Phase, during which they become even more dark and sexy. Someone casts a spell that does this to Iruma... but, actually, he's not evil at all. He still helps people if asked. He rejects his friends' offers of self-sacrificial behaviour. He's still benevolent, altruistic, etc. Underneath, he's still regular lovable Iruma. The only change is that Iru-mean has an attitude. He talks like a surly teenager, he's ambitious and he's going to make a few changes.
I can see why Iru-mean's popular. He's dynamic, he makes things happen and he drives stories. He's also regarded as sexier. Personally, though, I don't like him and I'll be skipping eps.6-8 if I ever rewatch this series. I prefer the nice, polite Iruma, e.g. when comforting a monster that had tried to eat him in ep.20. (I loved that moment.)
The show's other problem is that it's found a bit of a formula. It's lost its early sense of danger. There's not much about school life. There isn't a standout story arc and there isn't much for my favourite characters to do. Kuromu does nothing, unless you count her dispensable idol performance in ep.16. I love the core trio of Iruma, Alice and Clara and especially any Clara-centric episodes (e.g. episodes 11, 12 a bit and 19), but they're often stuck in the background. Ameri gets a story arc in eps.2-4 as she's temporarily a shrinking violet, but thereafter that she's merely in love with Iruma and trying to arrange dates with him. (She's adorable, but it flattens the character a bit.)
Thinking about it, two consecutive story arcs in the first eight episodes give regular cast members a temporary new personality. I'm not wild about this. I'd sooner see stories with the real versions.
Oh, and the Walter Park story arc made me snooze. It's giving everyone a chance to fight monsters and/or be heroic, but... zzzz.
All that said, though, the show's still charming. Iruma's lovely. Clara's mad family improve everything. Snape, er, Kaluego-sensei, is paradoxically endearing with his bloody-minded hatred of the world and his delight in worsening his students' lives, while secretly being conscientious. Ameri is still wonderful, being a scary sergeant-major-a-like who looks eight foot tall (Iruma's chin barely reaches her belly-button) but is nonplussed by also being a lovestruck girl. (She also has a memorable character design, with rocket-blast hair and her spiky-but-hot uniform. She's sexier than Elizabetta Ix, a succubus with the same height and proportions.)
I'll watch Season 3, but I'm expecting it to resemble Season 2 more than Season 1. I'm not expecting the show to choose between Clara and Ameri for Iruma (who doesn't seem mature enough for a girlfriend anyway), so they'll just tread adorable water. Our heroes are 14 years old, after all. There will be school stuff, but it'll have a safe starting point and probably won't change the status quo much.
It's still a good show, though. Lively, entertaining, funny. My opinion of Iru-mean is apparently an outlier, so you'll probably like him more than I did. The show deserves its success.