The Misfit of Demon King Academy – 1st Episode Review
For More Summer Anime Reviews check out our Summer 2020 Coverage Guide!
Synopsis: Anos Voldigord was a tyrannical Demon King that eradicated humans, spirits, and even the gods, but became bored of eternal warfare and reincarnated with dreams of a peaceful world. However, what awaited him in reincarnation after 2000 years were descendants who became too weak after being accustomed to peace, and all sorts of magic that deteriorated to the extreme. Anos enters Demon King Academy that gathers and educates those who are viewed as the reincarnation of the Demon King, but the academy could not see through his true powers and ends up branding him as a misfit. (Official Crunchyroll Synopsis)
1st Episode Review (Warning: Minor Spoilers to Follow):
Tom: The Misfit of Demon King Academy is but the latest entry in a long line of Light Novel adaptations with overpowered main characters. Misfit offers up a fairly standard, if perhaps more self-assured than usual, hero who dwarfs the competition in magical ability. It’s not a very well kept secret that our hero is none other than the reincarnated Demon King from two-thousand years ago, here to reclaim his throne. Anos’ overbearing powers are taken to an extreme as not one of these first episode enemies has any hope of touching him. It’s to the point where you have to wonder why he needs bother enrolling in the academy if he’s so unstoppably powerful. Couldn’t he just take the world by force again? This really pins the series as your typical Gary-stu story, fashioned to allow the targeted male audience a good old power fantasy to become wrapped up in, an edgy one at that. Unfortunately, for as fun as power fantasies can be, anyone not so wrapped up in that offer is going to find this show growing old, fast, even within this first episode itself.
Linny: The perfect way to describe how edgy this series can be is that in the very first episode, our protagonist, Anos literally kills and resurrects his opponent over and over again during an academy entrance exam. The show really goes in hard on showcasing just how powerful Anos is and if that excites you, then congrats, read no further and dive right in. If it’s made you grimace or feel unsure, here’s how ‘hardcore’ the show keeps trying to be; the later part of the episode has Anos resurrecting someone as a vengeful zombie and said zombie screaming in pain as he then proceeds to seek revenge against the person who killed him. But then… the show also ends on a shonen-like note where lessons about familial bonds are spouted, everything is undone, deaths included and we wrap up the episode with Anos being a tone deaf weirdo at his new school. It’s such a clash between awkward comedy and edgy badassery. The abrupt way in which Misfit switches between the two does not help either, giving the series an almost manic, unhinged quality.
Tom: Perhaps the abrupt jump between comedy and edgy-action is due to the awkward pacing. I’m not familiar with the source material, so I have no idea if the adaptation is truly rushing through content or not, but what’s in this first episode feels crammed together, launching audiences from one plot centric beat to the next, never giving time for characterization to shine through for anyone but Anos. What do we learn about Anos is fairly basic as well. Besides being the reincarnation of the Demon King, and suffering from a sense of humor that is out of place with the modern world, he’s actually a typical nice guy beneath all the bravado. In fact, in relation to the shonen like ending Linny describes above, it feels like the title of Demon King is more of a label, a mismatched one at that. Anos is maybe cocky, arrogant, and full of himself, but he’s got a heart of gold. That combination only further plays into the series’ power fantasy nature, offering a vessel the core demographic can imagine themselves as; someone who exudes traits typically associated with extreme masculinity, but still remains a stand up guy through and through.
Linny: To its credit, Misfit does have a few comedic scenes sprinkled throughout that act as stand out moments. These help provide a break from the more intense segments, especially if the violence wasn’t really grabbing you. The jokes aren’t all that original, mostly revolving around overly excitable parents who love jumping to conclusions and seeming a bit air headed but the show manages to play them up well for now. Ultimately though, the obscene displays of power and violence seem like a big part of the power fantasy vibe Misfit is going for and you need to be into that to be able to truly enjoy The Misfit of Demon King Academy. As extreme power fantasies go, The Misfit of Demon King Academy will definitely check all the right points for aficionados. For anyone seeking anything more or unique, consider this another skip for the season.
Tom: If you’re in love with the idea of seeing an unbeatable hero wreck douche-bags then Misfit is a perfect fit. If you were hoping for a story about a hero who faces actual obstacles, making you question whether he can truly rise to the top, then this isn’t for you. Thankfully Misfit is pretty upfront about itself, and that’s commendable in its own way. We don’t pretend for a minute that this story is anything but power fantasy, and maybe that honesty is what keeps me from viewing it in a completely negative light. Thus this makes this review quite simple; do you liker power fantasy with a tinge of brutal violence? Misfit is a perfect match. If not? Then that makes Misfit an easy pass.
The Misfit of Demon King Academy is available for streaming via Crunchyroll.