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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  • AidanAK47
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:16 AM)
    @Emma, that don’t matter. The plt was fine. It’s characters. Gen needs to learn to write characters. Otherwise all his future works are in jeopardy. Though I thought I would be bugged by the CG more so I guess I will give it that.
  • Emma
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:15 AM)
    Ha, I think like psycho pass it’d have made a better visual novel.
  • Emma
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:13 AM)
    Keep in mind also its also the first movie he’s worked on.
  • AidanAK47
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:11 AM)
    Why did she stay on earth? She has shown nothing but hatred for it. When did she warm up to the hat guy? Why is hat guy so attached to her, all she did was complain to him! Really all you neeed to do was fix these characters a bit. Make it that Angela did more, gave them both a little more personality and bonding moments. Then this would have been a great movie.
  • Emma
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:10 AM)
    Now remember the L/R thing with Japanese more likely it was Meant to be Barzac, true Balzac sounds absurd.
  • AidanAK47
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:09 AM)
    I remember her saying that hat guy “contributed” greatly to the mission. Bitch he did all the work! Hat guy was basically Kougami from psycho pass all over again. It’s funny that the robot was the best character. Highly likeable. Character motivations are a mystery. Why did Angela defend the robot. She didn’t even speak with him long enough to become friendly.
  • AidanAK47
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:07 AM)
    I thought that the plot structure and pacing did have potential. When you get down to it, the story isn’t really the problem. It had a good climax, a nice setup and really could have shined. But again Gen’s major weakness hinders it. Characters. Balzac(How the hell can you give her a name like that and not hear what it sounds like) was a terrible character. Ridiculously incompetent and useless.
  • Emma
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:07 AM)
    And such a shame when the one positive thing I can say about a movie is that I found the leads design attractive.
  • Emma
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:05 AM)
    But yeah you did a more concise job reviewing it than I.
    Theres a better review of it over on Standing on my necks blog.
  • AidanAK47
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:02 AM)
    They aren’t the best either seeing as in the first 30 minutes it was shown to have pinpoint perfect accuracy, yet at the finale can’t seem to hit one robot. Rie Kugimiya is just horribly miscast. Her voice does not match her character design at all and it’s glaringly obvious every time she opens her mouth. Apparently she’s supposed to look like a lolita, yet that body with that rack is anything but.

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