In the second volume of Shonen Onmyoiji things start to become
more interesting and the stakes are raised. Masahiro is still determined
to become a great onmyouji, one more powerful than his famous grandfather,
but it's a long and difficult path. There's still the foreign demon
out there somewhere, and though the demon has suffered a setback at the
hands of Masahiro and Mukkon, he hasn't given up yet. He takes a
different tact this time. Instead of attacking Masahiro directly,
he goes after his friends. With another five episodes on this disc
the plot moves along nicely with this volume. This is turning out
to be a pretty good series.
Abe no Seimei is a famous onmyouji, a sort of mystic guardian/priest/demon
hunter. He consults with royalty and important officials, and everyone
in Japan knows how powerful he is. (His character is based on a real
person from Japanese history.) Being the grandson of such a powerful
and important person is no easy task, just ask Abe no Masahiro. He's
lived in his grandfather's shadow for all his life, and everyone expects
the 14 year old to become a powerful onmyouji like his father and grandfather
before him. Unfortunately he just doesn't seem to have the talent
One day Masahiro encounters a shikigami, a supernatural being that is
sort of like a magician's familiar, a creature that only onmyouji can see.
They are supposed to be helpful, but this one is particularly annoying.
No matter how many times he tries to get it to leave, the fox/rabbit-like
creature always ends up coming back. Giving it the name Mukkon, Masahiro
lets it tag along and tries to ignore its taunts as best as he can.
When on an errand for his grandfather, Masahiro is attacked by a demon.
During the battle, some of Masahiro's latent abilities awaken, which makes
him overjoyed, but he's still not powerful enough to defeat the creature
attacking him. When all seems lost, Mukkon reveals that his true
name is Guren. When Masahiro says his name, the animal transforms
into a human-looking being, one who has some seriously impressive powers.
Now that Masahiro can see demons, he starts on the path to becoming
a true onmyouji. There's something going on however. It seems
that a major demon is working in the area, and one that has targeted Masahiro.
With the demon Kyuuki bested things seem a little quieter. Masahiro
hasn't given up looking for the creature though, and continues his nightly
patrols. He can't sense Kyuuki's presence at all, which is strange,
but it's clear that he's still around. The lesser nice demons are
still being attacked and killed for no apparent reason.
Masahiro isn't the only one with problems however. Abe no
Seimei has been having trouble with the twelve shikigami who protect and
help him. Seimei has decreed that Masahiro will be his heir, but
his shikigami don't like the idea, especially one named Seiiryu.
Masahiro seems like a weak child, not one to take over his grandfather's
great responsibilities. In addition, Masahiro has aligned himself
with Guren, who the other shikigami haven't trusted for a while, ever since
he tried to kill Seimei.
With this turmoil brewing, a demon attacks. This time it uses an indirect
approach. One evening Masahiro's good friend Akiko is visited by
her cousin Keiko. Keiko calls to her cousin and tries to get her
to leave her compound which has spells protecting it against evil. Suspecting
something, Akiko has the presence of mind to stay inside and tells Mashahiro
about it the next day.
After investigating, the young onmyouji discovers that Keiko is possessed.
He sets out that evening to rid her of the demon, but Keiko turns up, wanting
to help. Of course she's no help at all, in fact she just causes
more problems by getting kidnapped and whisked off into the mountains.
Mashahiro and Mukkon follow after her, but they only succeed in finding
two powerful hawk-demons. Even when Seimei's shikigami join the fight,
the outcome is anything but certain.
This series continues on strong. There's a fair amount of continuity,
so the show doesn't come across as a monster-of-the-week show, and the
plot has enough twists and turns to keep it interesting. I especially
liked when the other shikigami refused to accept Masahiro. It makes
sense. He doesn't seem that strong. As Seiiryu put it, why
should the shikigami follow him when he relies on Mukkon to fight all of
The story takes some unexpected turns, which is a nice change of pace.
The event that occurred when Mashahiro rescues Keiko took me by surprise,
and the roadblocks that are set up to stop the pair's budding romance are
something that I didn't see coming, but at the same time it makes a lot
of sense. The characters continue to develop and the fact that
Mukkon's is an outcast among his kind explains a lot, even thought the
whole story hasn't been told yet.
This volume contains the next five episodes on a single DVD.
It comes in a clear keepcase with a reversible cover. There is an
insert with release months for the rest of the series.
Like most anime releases here in region 1, this disc has the original
Japanese audio track as well as an English dub, both in stereo. I
alternated between the two tracks while screening this disc, and both tracks
were very good. I ended up preferring the Japanese track a bit, but
there wasn't anything wrong with the dub track. The English actors
did a good job of bringing their character to life, and obviously fake
accents weren't present.
The 1.78:1 widescreen anamorphic image was very good. The colors
were bright and the lines were tight. The dark scenes had a nice
amount of detail too. Cross coloration wasn't a problem and aliasing
was extremely minor, main in the background when the camera pans across
fine lines. This is a very nice looking show, definitely better than
The only extra was a clean closing.
This show is one of the better series that has popped up recently.
It has a good story, some interesting characters, a solid mystery and enough
action and comedy to make sure that it doesn't grow dull. An all
around fun show, Shonen Onmyouji gets a strong recommendation.