The Demon Girl Next Door – Mid Season Anime Review

Synopsis: Yuko Yoshida is just an ordinary schoolgirl — until Lilith unleashes her dormant, devilish powers. Now, Yuko must defeat Momo Chiyoda, the shrine maiden of the Light Clan who just so happens to go to her school! (Official HIDIVE Synopsis)

Gotta grab every win you can get, no matter how small.

Mid Season (6 Episodes) Review (Warning: Minor Spoilers to Follow):

Reaching the mid season, The Demon Girl Next Door flounders, its comedy becoming stale as we draw from the same well again and again, propping the show up more so on its adorably pathetic protagonist, Yuko Yoshia, and the moe appeal that comes with her feeble attempts to best Momo, that more often develops into silly, heart warming friendship building antics than the battle between ‘good and evil.’

Somebody tell those girl a tennis racquet doesn’t work as a shield.

The big problem with Demon Girl’s comedy is simply how similar it is episode to episode. Episodes exclusively revolve around Yuko’s latest attempt to best Momo, it failing miserably, and instead turning into a way for the two to bond. Additional characters, like Yuko’s lil sister, or Yuko’s mother, or Yuko’s classmates are used sparingly, making the banter between Yuko and Momo the primary appeal. But after awhile that back and forth banter doesn’t feel clever enough to keep episodes from feeling repetitive.

The series tries to shake things up by utilizing Lilith more frequently, Yuko’s demonic ancestor who contacts her through her dreams. The trouble with Lilith though is that her gag is much similar to Yuko’s, she’s painfully inept, even after taking over Yuko’s body. Her personality is much more proud and defiant, but it doesn’t stop the gags from feeling just as tired and the outcome of her efforts just as expected.

What world has this poor idiot been living in?

That’s not to say that The Demon Girl Next Door is a bad series. Yuko is still a joy to watch as she fumbles in her efforts for victory over Momo, and is really too sweet a girl to be any kind of demon. But the deeper you get into The Demon Girl Next Door the more you need to find Yuko adorable, and that’s where the show starts hinge on its slice of life/moe charms, requiring you find these girls precious enough to care about in their own right, even if the comedy and antics don’t feel fresh with each episode.

That said, The Demon Girl Next Door has one other saving grace: World Building. Reaching Episode 6 the series expands on its magical girl and demon clan concepts, sprinkling in new details/fun takes on typical magical girl tropes that help to revive the comedy. This includes touching on concept likes how magical girl’s often seem to have talking cats, or other animal types at their side. The comedy Demon Girl derives from this world building helps to keep the series afloat and if it can do more of that in the back half of the season then The Demon Girl Next Door can remain a fun, if light, comedy for the Summer.

When the teasing gets too mean, you must always smooth things over.

The Demon Girl Next Door is nothing amazing. There’s better comedy this Summer alone, without a doubt. Wasteful Days is the far superior chuckle fest. But The Demon Girl Next Door retains enough humor to make it one of 2019’s better moe/comedy anime, offering enough fun and silly humor to appeal to viewers who need more than just cute girls doing cute things.

Recommended: The Demon Girl Next Door falters as its comedy grows dull, but recovers by episode six, thanks to fun world building and riffs on typical magical girl elements, making it a modest success as Summer’s moe-comedy.

 

 

 

The Demon Girl Next Door is available for streaming via HIDIVE.

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