Posted by psgels on 14 December 2010 with categories: Nurarihyon no Mago

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)

8 Responses

  1. Nayrael says:

    The flashback with Chibi Rikuo was the chapter 1 of the manga. It explained why Rikuo didn’t want to become the heir at first, why Kiyotsugu is so obsessed with Youkai, etc. I still don’t understand why the hell they cut it out.

    As for Tamazuki, he was stereotypical and boring villain even in manga (tough there was less morals throwing around) and he is later completely forgotten by most of readers (next villain is also pure evil, but is better executed and not that boring and lame). The whole Shikoku arc itself served only to win some youkai respect for Rikuo and build him up for whats to come later on as well as basically introduce Rikuo’s Hyakki Yakou who will later be shown in more detail.

    In other words, splitting the story into seasons is the worst mistake they did. Kiyo Cross Squad and Shikoku saga’s may not be bad, but they are just build ups. And building up to nothing is a waste.

  2. K.K. says:

    The series is really limited in that they don’t get as violent as in the manga (with regards to Inugami, especially). Also, the “young Rikuo” bit was supposed to be the first chapter (not that I mind the re-arrange, but it’s really not a very necessary chapter to have at all). It’s somewhat annoying to say “the manga is better” but it’s repetitive because it’s true.

    Tamazuki is also pretty much an angsty teenager who is rebelling against his parents. In the manga, the whole arc is more or less regarded as “a kid’s fight,” and really serves as more of an intro to Rikuo taking on the role of leader. Beyond this is the pre-requisite shounen training arc, followed by a storyline that is somewhat ‘darker’. It’s still a shounen series though, so you pretty much know what to expect (power-up –> fight –> repeat).

  3. Nura Rihan says:

    second season been announced, so you can stop your extremly repetitive doubt about the secon season, psgels

  4. psgels psgels says:

    Ah, that definitely makes things more interesting. Thankfully I was wrong on this one.

  5. Syaoran says:

    After this fight was when i droped the Manga.

  6. sv says:

    It’s a shounen series, what did you expect? I half expected it to go the way of DragonBall, Inuyasha, Bleach and others with repeated powerups…good thing it didn’t (yet, but it probably will at some point). At least for the others, their saving grace were the action scenes. This one doesn’t have anything to boast about.

    Also, am I the only one who gets annoyed at the voice acting? Normally I like Aya Hirano but her voice just annoys the hell out of me in this one. The same with Ai Maeda’s protrayal of Keikain… seems like overkill with the kansai accent. Arghh

  7. Lightning says:

    @Nura Rihan: Yeah, good news!

    @Syaoran: I have no idea about the manga but the few people I’ve seen post about it say that dropping it at this point was a mistake, as this (or maybe a few chapters after it) is supposedly where the big plotting supposedly picks up speed in the manga or something…

    But again I’ve got no idea, I’m enjoying watching the cold not knowing what’s coming up, so I could be wrong.

  8. flyingmintbunny says:

    The show has many faults. It ended the first season too quickly, not putting enough depth into it, the way they portrayed Tamazuki was like your average villain, most of the characters’ origins are unknown and barely anything is known about them.

    But lets look at it from a different angle.

    Maybe they ended early because they wanted it to be something like a cliff hanger. Tamazuki is not really your average villain, in fact, I can hardly say that Tamazuki is a villain, it seems like he is a lost teen struggling to find out who he is. And, let’s face it. Sometimes not knowing about certain characters creates a mysterious feel about them. But not to worry! Maybe we’ll see what the different characters are truly like in season 3 (though we all know already a few traits about them by observing).

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  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Wednesday, Nov 25. 2015 08:59 AM)
    I say this because people often like to hype up the genre or those elements. I bring this up/think about it now because I played a game called undertale lately on my brothers recommendation and he was all like it emotionally destroyed him but I never ended up crying, I mean don’t get me wrong its a good game, there were laughs to be had and there was sentiment but it wasn’t THAT sad/funny.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Wednesday, Nov 25. 2015 08:44 AM)
    Given how many people cry at some drama, clannad included.
    That reminds me…
    I can’t actually remember the last time in my life where I cried, I draw a blank.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Wednesday, Nov 25. 2015 07:58 AM)
    @Aidan: Something always feels off to me when you criticize clannad, I mean I’m critical enough of key these days too but it seems odd that you rank it as an 8 on MAL when you’ve always made it sound its more of a high 6 or a 7.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Wednesday, Nov 25. 2015 03:45 AM)
    But I’m no fan of gung-ho soldier games/most fps games so I am glad clannad, a visual novel outsold call of duty.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Wednesday, Nov 25. 2015 03:44 AM)
    I said it once I’ll say it again. I preferred the clannad movie over the tv series, had more style, a more mature feel to it and cut out all the superfluous arcs/comedy for the better. It also concludes better than the series. The emotional involvement in the kyoani version doesn’t work for me anymore, doesn’t hold up. However the film remains emotionally engaging after revisiting it.
  • AidanAK47
    (Wednesday, Nov 25. 2015 03:19 AM)
    Holy hell Clannad is selling like hotcakes on Steam. Even beat Call of Duty in sales at one point.
    Kinda happy to see a VN get recognised and it would help open up the market for more titles to come over. But..well..Clannad really isn’t all that great.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Wednesday, Nov 25. 2015 02:29 AM)
    I can remember when I first got into anime when I was a whole lot younger I always said I would watch lodoss war, El Hazard and slayers, yet I never ended up doing so…
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Tuesday, Nov 24. 2015 05:34 AM)
    Ha, the child in me would love to see a film like that I’d imagine, when I was young I was pretty crazy about Egyptian supernatural stuff.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Nov 24. 2015 05:23 AM)
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Nov 24. 2015 05:22 AM)
    @Kaiser: yeah, even tho it was his highest grossing movie it managed to brought his career to a stand-still. His next film Gods of Egypt looks like it could be fun, albeit it’s just as much as a CGIfest as I, Robot. Egyptian stuff is admittedly rather intriguing, I remember a 2004 French film Immortel ad vitam that blended that with modern themes that became popular for a while.

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