Friday, August 13, 2010

Nurarihyon no Mago

Even in human form, Rikuo can be a badass when he needs to...

I don't normally watch shonen action anime - I don't watch Bleach, Naruto, or DBZ, although I did watch Inuyasha for a while until the "monster of the week" thing finally made my head want to explode. But I tried out the first episode of Nurarihyon no Mago, and found myself getting hooked - it's an interesting premise, a normal-looking junior high student named Rikuo who's actually one-quarter youkai (more or less translates to demon/monster) and is heir to be the leader of a powerful youkai clan. Rikuo doesn't want any part of it, preferring just to live like a normal human - but DNAngel-style he does have a youkai personality that comes out when needed, usually when someone important to him is in trouble, and his youkai side *does* want to take over the clan someday.

Through the first six episodes, there's a lot going for this - there's a good cast, with Kana, his friend who he has kind of a crush on (voiced by the now-infamous Aya Hirano of Haruhi fame), Yuki-Onna, a youkai who's his bodyguard/servant of sorts (and voiced by Hocchan), and Yura, an onmyouji in training who ends up at his school. The guy who's the head of the 'Youkai Research Club' that recruits Rikuo is...well, a little annoying...in episode 6 in particular I was rooting for some youkai to come and bite his head off, but no such luck so far. But aside from that, it's a solid cast, and I'm a sucker for characters like Yuki-Onna who have a strong sense of duty to protect their charge. Rikuo's not a bad lead either - his youkai side is a badass, and his human side has guts too.

It'll be interesting to see where they take the story - there's a possible love triangle in the works between Rikuo, Kana, and Yuki-Onna, and since many youkai don't like the idea of Rikuo taking over someday I'm sure the current arc won't be the last attempt to take him down either. Will his youkai side end up taking over his human side? Will Kana end up falling for his youkai side (which would really give me DNAngel flashbacks...)? Or will he disappear forever at some point, leaving Rikuo to yell "DDAAARRKKKUUUU!"? I don't know, but I think it'll be a fun ride to find out...

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