As the penultimate episode, this episode convinced me: next week is going to be a really bad point for this series to end. Out of all of the reviews that I’m going to write this month, Nurarihyon no Mago’s will likely be the most difficult one, because while it isn’t exactly a bad series, I also see no way to recommend it in this state. I didn’t really get anything out of these past 24 episodes.
The anime creators really made some crucial mistakes here. The extra time for Rikuo’s classmates was actually very good at first sight. They took what could have been the single most annoying characters of the series, fleshed them out and made them enjoyable. The main problem however is that this series completely failed in terms of building up.
This series spends a lot of time focusing on all kinds of different backstories, creating characters, most notably Gyuki and Rikuo and his classmates. The rest of the cast however is completely ignored, not fleshed out at all and therefore feels as flat as a pancake, not to mention that this finale has ignored just about all of the fleshed out ones. Tamazuki is a horrible villain: we know his backstory, but what do we know about him as a person? He’s evil and wants power; that’s all. We know a lot about small Rikuo now, but how much exactly have we gotten to know big Rikuo? This guy still is this guy who just comes and kills evil youkai. The rest of the cast is the same: beyond their basic personalities, they’re all just the same static people over and over again.
Now, as for this episode: it was a bit of a weird point to suddenly reveal that Rikuo’s classmates have once before been saved the child version of large Rikuo (who sounded really strange with the same voice actor, by the way), but my main issue here lied with the way it tried to wrap up everything, because it exactly illustrates how it completely failed at building up something. In the end, Tamazuki does what most generic villains do and kills off all of his subordinates in order to gain power. The only thing that Rikuo and the other youkai manage to retort this with is that you can’t control people with fear, but with respect. In the end, it’s all come down to these cheesy and shallow morals, after 24 episodes of airtime. I really expected better from this. Both from the anime creators and from the original story. I mean, someone tell me that the manga was more than just “let’s all beat the stereotypically evil Tamazuki here”.
Rating: – (Disappointing)