Rikuo Nura doesn't want anything to do with evil youkai, and just wants a normal life. Too bad he's a quarter youkai, and Nurarihyon, his grandfather, is insistent that he takes over as head of the Nura Clan. He's able to keep his supernatural secret life hidden from his classmates, as he can only transform into a youkai at night, for six hours at a time.
Unfortunately for him, various youkai factions are out to target both his youkai and human friends, and like it or not, he needs to embrace his youkai side. Life is not easy when you're Nurarihyon's grandson.
Advanced screenings of the first two episodes of Nurarihyon no Mago were held in select TOHO Cinemas on June 13 and 20 of 2010. The full anime aired on Yomiuri TV, Tokyo MX, Chuukyou TV, BS11, Animax, among other stations in Japan.
Edited this review by the way :)
Grammar Nazis? GTFO lol. This review is not for you. Why not create your own then? :P
Glad that my friend let me watch this great stuff.
Okay now let’s start.
What will you do if you will become a powerful commander?
The story revolves around Nura Clan. A Clan of “youkai” that controls 10,000 demons. Amongst them is what they called “supreme commander” a very powerful “youkai”.
Now for the protagonist story so far. Nurarhiyon no Mago didn’t lack story backgrounds at all. They explained what happened in the past with the right execution. Except for the flashbacks that his
season lacked. The jabs also were at the right timing and in the right scene.
The first antagonist didn’t lack also the background which is a factor plus because you know why he did that and those. Over all pacing are great. There is no filler. None at all. Some scenes from manga are cut here and placed at the second season instead.
IMO the sword/katana fighting are the main stream of this, the animation was great. Also the opening credits were great it’s well drawn. The ending credits weren’t that good compare to the opening. The chibi or the miniture forms of the characters didn’t fit. The genre of this was supposed to be "Monster" not a "Cute" or "Moe" one.
The youkai are well drawn, Animations are really great.
Opening song was great. Fast Forward by Money Majik. Every time I’m listening to the full version I also sang.The BGM when Nurarhiyon attacks a youkai has a good execution. The back ground tracks fit every scene Nurarhiyon no Mago has to offer. What destroyed the good sounds is the ending song. It didn’t fit what genre nurarhiyon has. The 2nd one didn't make it for me either.
The characters fit what personalities they have. Adding characters while the story progress with their background is also a plus factor, at the same time Rukio is “growing” every episode. They also didn’t lack time executing who is going to “grow” with the explanation.
The character development is great. Overall the adaption from the manga onto an anime didn't lacked anything except less than 10 chapters form the start but not that huge character back story. Try to read the manga first rather knowing it here (at the review)
I really did enjoy this. Various scenes will be enjoyable while watching this. You will be caught in suspense, laugh at the jabs and get excited on the katana fights. And this anime already leave a huge impression to me and still continued for the 2nd season!
Final Score: 9/10
It’s up to you to decide whether you gonna watch this or ditch it, but imo this anime is great. The jokes are in the right time. Great Music and the BGM is really mixed on the scenes. Great Art and Character development.
If there's one word I could describe Nurarihyon no Mago, it would have to be BORING.
Having read the adaptation I really had high hopes for this series as the formula to which Mago is about, is seldom used in shonén anime and if done right, would have definitely been one of the better series for 2010.
...but like I said, BORING. Here's why:
Story - 8
Nurarihyon no Mago is a tale of the supernatural. It's a tale of demons and spirits and the co-existence between their kind and ours. It's also a tale of Rikuo Nura and how he takes over his grandfathers clan known as
the Hyakki Yakō, a clan made up of yōkai(demons) and other familiar spirits of Japanese folklore. Nurarihyon no Mago is about the trials and tribulations Rikuo goes through to achieve being the head of that clan(to which at first he has no interest in) while knowing that he is only a quarter yōkai himself.
What makes the story even more interesting is how the Nura yōkai clan portray chivalry, similar to those you'd find in yakuza(Japanese gangster) movies, and how this series uses fear to gauge their strength.
Nurarihyon no Mago is Rikuo's story, as he struggles to find his place between both worlds, and it's a tale of superiority between other yōkai clans as you'll find in the second half of the series.
So far so good right? So what went wrong?
Art & Animation - 6
This is where it was a miss for me. While I was happy the art stayed true to Hiroshi Shiibashi's manga, giving you a richly detailed account to Japan's yōkai like you'd find in an old Japanese tapestry, I was really disappointed in its animation. For a shonén title, the series really lacked 'fluidity' for a better word making each scene seem like your watching still-frame art from the 90's. The execution and pacing was lacking and for a series made late 2010, the choreography was non-existent.
While there are times when you think animation might improve(like watching the intricacies of a Sakura tree blossom at night), you are let down the next moment when characters clash....very...slowly. Even anime such as Hikaru no Go, which is a series about an Asian 'bored' game provided better excitement. I usually have a benchmark when it comes to shonén anime(specially ones released in the last few years) and Mago simply did not cut it for me.
If I had to make a comparison to Mago's animation, it would probably come close to Samurai Deeper Kyo(which aired back in 2002), another anime that had all the right premises but didn't deliver.
Yes, Nurarihyon no Mago may have picked up after 20 episodes into the series, but that's 20+ episodes too late! For some people, an anime is good if it entices you through the first few episodes. NOT at the very end where people have already dropped it or have put it on hold waiting for someone to tell them to pick it up again. It's not fine wine which you to mature(unless you're one who don't drop anime regardless)
Sound - 5
While I have no complaints about the voice actors chosen for Mago(besides the obvious of some being miscasted), where I really felt the series was also lacking was a 'strong' musical score. Shonén anime can be gripping when a running score is played in the background. The series I mentioned earlier, Hikaru no Go is a very good example to this in that it has such a moving soundtrack, that regardless how boring the game is played in Hikaru it still keeps you riveted, and at times even on edge. Whilst Nurarihyon no Mago does have BGM running(softly), none felt suited to the tempo of each scene making it seem like I was watching an 80's series due to just hearing dialogue.
I will commend that the OP's for both arcs in the series were consistent( with both titles performed by Monkey Majik) giving you that feeling for what the show is going to be, but I'll be honest and admit that the ED's(performed by Katate☆Size) just did not feel appropriate for each ending episode. Instead of thinking I was watching a series about demons and the supernatural, the upbeat tempo at the end of each episode made it sound like it was done by a backyard DJ adding music to his favorite home video.
Characters - 6
The series as a whole only really shines through its characters. For one, you have Rikuo who is a quarter yōkai which means like any shonén anime, there is a part of the main character that would make any fan who's into transformations go: "Wow! Sick! I want to see more of this!" And I admit, when I had first read the adaptation, I was pretty much all over it the moment Rikuo turned into the 'Master of the Night'.
Just seeing his transformation made me feel like a little boy again watching Goku turn into Super-Saiyijinn 3.
Nurarihyon no Mago also features a huge cast of characters which at most 'can' be likable, but I wouldn't start saying that they'd be memorable like other well known shonén supporting characters and the only one I'd take real note of is Kiyotsugu(of the Kiyo Paranormal Squad) who happens to probably be the most annoying side character in all of anime history.
Enjoyment and Overall - 5
In all honesty, I have mixed feelings for this series as a part of me wants to grow to like it thanks to having known how the manga continues, while the other half is screaming "Bloody Murder!" at the anime director.
Overall I am clearly disappointed with Mago as an anime due to the segments I had mentioned earlier and I'm surprised that it's even getting a second season when there are clearly far better anime out there who hasn't seen the light of day since they first aired(Berserk & Kenichi to name a few). I can only hope that they find a better director(or another studio take it up) for season 2 as there is no way I'd be buying the first once its licensed.
Nurarihyon no Mago is more 'superficial' then it is supernatural and at best may pass time for people with nothing to do, but it definitely isn't praiseworthy let alone top-shelf when it comes to action anime.
Ah...Nurarihyon no Mago. An interesting anime indeed.
Before I start reviewing, I have to admit, I'm a big sucker for Jun Fukuyama voicing characters with alter egos (e.g. Lelouch/Zero in Code Geass, Ryner/Ryner with Alpha Stigma activated in Densetsu no Yuusha no Densetsu and of course, Rikuo Day/Rikuo Night in Nurarihyon no Mago), so excuse me if I sound a bit biased here.
Now, on to the actual review:
Story (7/10): You have your classic reluctant hero, Nura Rikuo, heir to the Nura Clan. 3/4 human and 1/4 youkai, he lives a normal school life by day and controls an army of youkai by night. The story details
the challenges Rikuo face as a part human in a youkai household and as a part youkai in human society. Sounds cliched, right? I agree. Even so, the story isn't all that bad. Although the development of the plot is painfully slow, it also allows the viewer to gain a greater insight into the characters.
Art (8/10): Studio Deen has never really done a bad job with their animations, so there's nothing much I can critique here. I really liked the colour contrast between the human and youkai societies. You can see that anything relating to humans generally has warmer colours, whereas anything relating to youkai generally has cooler colours.
Sound (7/10): The OSTs in this anime are brilliant. Then again, I shouldn't say OSTs, because it's more like just one OST with many variations, but it still sounds good nonetheless. Seiyuus were well casted for the most part, though I really don't think Akira Ishida sounds good in any part except Arthrun Zala from Gundam Seed, no offense. Again, I'm a sucker for Jun Fukuyama voicing characters with "double" lives, so I have no complaints there. Openings were...decent. Endings were...not so decent. Not the best OPs or ENDs I've seen recently.
Character (9/10): Like I mentioned earlier, I think the characters were well developed because of the slow movement of the plot. There were some crucial flashblacks that I really enjoyed because they cleared up character motivations brilliantly (e.g. Gyuki's flashback regarding his relationship with the Nurarihyon and Kana's flashback regarding her relationship with Night Rikuo). However, because of the large cast of youkai, not many of them are examined in detail, so many of the characters are just kind of there...you don't really know much about them other than little insignificant hints dropped here and there.
Enjoyment (7/10): I must say, I enjoyed this anime, mostly because of its subtle comedy. The names of the youkai are hilarious first of all. Kubinashi (literally meaning "no neck") has no neck. I found that funny. Kana's misunderstanding about Rikuo. I totally saw it coming, but I laughed anyways. Everytime Rikuo transformed, I also laughed, mostly because it reminded me of the cliched: weak character becomes strong through wicked transformation. The worst thing about the anime by far is the slow plot development. And when I say slow, I mean slow. The Shikoku arc was like 12 episodes, when it really should've been something like 6 because half of it was about Rikuo hesitating.
Overall (7/10): It was good, but hey, if you have as much time on your hands as I do, go do something productive instead. Cheers!
I was looking forwad to this show, as i had heard a lot of good things about its source. After the first episode i felt euphoric; a shounen that would provide bad ass fights, but has a dark background, and looks like it will avoid the pitfalls of the others. A plot based on the complexity of a nation of youkai but the simplicity of a shounen. A mix of the happy day rikou and the dark mysterious commander at night.
However while everything could have been promising every episode i cried about
the pace. There was not really anything horribly wrong with the story, and it was really good to tell the truth. Yet, the story crawls at a snails pace that it just ruins the whole experience. Through the start i was just thinking of how the build up was great, but then it hit me. The climax could never reach those expecations it builds up for a whole season. I had my hopes up since it was only 26 episodes, but it felt like i was watching reborn, naruto, bleach. It felt like i was watching filler!
The fights were not impressive. They were good in that Nura kicks ass with nothing more than his brain and a sword, but the animation is poor and honesty the expectation issue comes back again. They did not make up for the wait either. Another complaint is how there was also no real challenge for Nura throughout the season either.
The youkai characters did not get a lot of air time or development at all but they seemed interesting. The majority of the characters are intelligent, respectable, and most of all extremely useful by nature. They follow Nura because his is an indeed admirable character; he is not our typical useless lead, but smart and knows how to put on a good show for us. I was cheering at him at multiple points in the show for his impressive displays. That said his school friends play little part. In fact they are total weights on the story; they don't do anything yet get just as much air time as the youkai. Another issue is how they can all stay in the headquarters for youkai over a weekend and not even meet one. Essentially if i said that the girls go help his mom cook dinner you can infer the level of depth and intelligence given to them.
As soon as i wrote down these initial thoughts i went and started the manga. Decide ending on such a depressing note i read the large quantity of chapters to the most recent one in a few days. I will leave it on a note, seeing the anime first, that the manga is many times superior. If you don't want to read it, then you will be watching a pretty bad adaption.
Have you ever wondered about those characters in anime that cast spells using hand seals and pieces of paper? Well, in this analysis we’ll take a look at onmyodo in anime, as well as some prominent onmyoji and the tools they use.