Posted by psgels on 21 December 2010 with categories: Anime Reviews, Nurarihyon no Mago




You know these really long shounen fighting series, of which people say “yeah, it starts bland but after 30 or so episodes it gets really good”. That’s this show; at least according to the many people who have read the Nurarihyon no Mago manga. And yes, it has only 25 episodes.

Nurarihyon no Mago does have a fairly intriguing premise, chockful of the Japanese Shinto culture. It’s pretty solid in the way that it builds up its main characters, side characters, setting and premise. A lot of episodes of this series go into background, fleshing out the different characters, so much even that building up is pretty much the only thing it does. In order to see it pay off, we’re going to have to wait for the second season and because of that I can’t really recommend this season standalone because 25 episodes is a long time to sit through.

The different story arcs throughout this series aren’t bad; they’re just unremarkable. The main problem is that Rikuo (the main character)’s grown up form is just too powerful, taking away the tension of all of the fights he’s in. It establishes a lot of character background, but never really uses it, and that’s my main problem with this series: there is hardly anything that keeps your attention. The biggest culprit is the second half of this series: a lot of build-up there goes into Rikuo’s classmates, who in the end turn out to have no purpose whatsoever in the main story of that arc, leaving the really imporant characters of that arc way too underdeveloped.

Compare that to Letter Bee’s first season: that too went on for really long, yet at least that one delivered some great standalone stories, and kept viewers on a hook with a terrific cliff-hanger towards its second season. Nurarihyon no Mago has none of that. If I hadn’t heard the praises that the manga readers give to the chapters that follow the point where the series ends, I might even have dropped this show.

Storytelling: 6/10 – It’s an entire series of build-up. That’s not good storytelling!
Characters: 8/10 – A solid cast with likable characters. Nothing special, though.
Production-Values: 8/10 – Great character and youkai designs, animation that’s nothing special.
Setting: 8/10 – Again, an interesting background for the second series to work with. It will, right?

Suggestions:
Letter Bee
The Law of Ueki
Hikaru no Go

8 Responses

  1. n says:

    well…duh…over half of it it’s fillers. -_-

    it’s like the first couple of episodes of bleach plus crap tons of fillers. you don’t even come close to the meat of the series…just a bit at the beginning and crap tons of fillers.

  2. Kalandra says:

    If half of it is fillers, I might say its a pretty good rating.

  3. mds says:

    just forget this crap,
    the Ao no Exorcist anime that come next year will be much much MUCH better

    and it’s A-1 Pictures,by the way.

  4. psgels psgels says:

    Kalandra: it’s indeed not as simple as that. None of the fillers try to be pointless and either try to give some extra depth to one of the characters or try to flesh some of them out a bit more. The big problem with this however is that it makes it a ridiculously unbalanced series that just goes on for way too long.

    mds: A-1 Pictures isn’t a guarantee, though. They’re either really good or really bad as well. Just look at Togainu no Chi for a bad example.

  5. Houlgrave says:

    I dunno psgls, I could have told you 20-something episodes ago that this was a waste of time and energy. :/

  6. Puran says:

    This looked mediocre from the start, then it proceeded to get worse. It’s ok, I think psgels followed it because he has a soft spot for Deen (which after Shion no Ou I can kind of understand).

    Even with more episodes coming out, I don’t look forward to this.

  7. Westlo says:

    “#

    #

    Kalandra: it’s indeed not as simple as that. None of the fillers try to be pointless and either try to give some extra depth to one of the characters or try to flesh some of them out a bit more. The big problem with this however is that it makes it a ridiculously unbalanced series that just goes on for way too long. ”

    The other problem is the majority of those characters mean nothing in the big scheme of things. It would be like if Bleach gave Orihimes best friend Tatsuki (Bleach should’ve done more with her..) episodes and episodes of development in the first 26 episodes and than she does nothing period for the next 200.

  8. TempestGarden says:

    I am playing “catch up” with this series as I have been doing for a little while now. I am currently at episode 15 and I determined to finish it. I don’t hate this show, but I will agree with the general consensus that it could be a lot better. I would rather finish it and check out the next season then not finish it and find out later that the next season is way better.

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  • reaLjustified
    (Sunday, Jul 24. 2016 02:59 AM)
    @Mike It’s really interesting how much success he found as an illustrator after essentially quitting manga. I have a really old pencil case by him that I’ve had for years.
  • Mike
    (Saturday, Jul 23. 2016 11:14 PM)
    @Kaiser Takahashi was one of the first to take it out of “smut” made for men and gave the genre to girls.
  • K-Off
    (Saturday, Jul 23. 2016 09:34 PM)
    My palette is cleansed after Legacy. I think I can make a push and finish Mirage Sessions by Monday.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Jul 23. 2016 06:25 PM)
    Altogether there is no good explanation as to why Berserk has been on the fringes for the last 20 years. The silver lining is that it looks like things are picking up for the franchise- with a new series, two new games and frequent manga releases- so here’s hoping we get a much bigger budget for the next cour, and god willing maybe even a studio change. And I’m getting greedy, but gimme that From Software Berserk game! That would be an instant cash mine.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Jul 23. 2016 06:18 PM)
    @Vyse: I was actually thinking of that, and the dark mature content is definitely a factor. Yet looking at what’s trending at the moment, with AoT and Kabaneri, it seems that the more violent stuff are bankable now. And it’s not like anime is stranger to adapting material that hasn’t finished yet. So I’m guessing that Miura is hard to work with probably, and maybe he’s tight about giving studios the license.
  • Rusty
    (Saturday, Jul 23. 2016 05:16 PM)
    I like it better when animes are different then the manga because normally i know how everything will end after reading the manga.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Jul 23. 2016 05:07 PM)
    And I’m more than open for an anime to do things a bit differently from the source, I mean look at the new berserk they included an action scene that wasn’t in the manga, I liked that.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Jul 23. 2016 04:59 PM)
    @Mike: Makoto Takahashi! Makoto Takahashi! I know who he is, I spent a while looking at his art, best example of good oldschool shoujo style. He also is credited with kickstarting the shoujo-ai genre I think…
    @Bam: flowers of evil both improved on and took away from its source material.
  • reaLjustified
    (Saturday, Jul 23. 2016 04:16 PM)
    Furthermore, it’s not as if Berserk is so special by itself that a decent adaptation is automatically impossible. You’re watching one right now. If you think otherwise than it boils down to personal preference.
  • reaLjustified
    (Saturday, Jul 23. 2016 04:13 PM)
    @Vyse It’s obviously not trying to cater to children, the studio knows its audience. I wouldn’t automatically assume that just because it’s an anime adaptation that it’s an attempt to please everyone.

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