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Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Demon King Daimao: Complete Collection
Demon King Daimao: Complete Collection
Sentai Filmworks // Unrated // June 14, 2011
List Price: $59.98 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by Neil Lumbard | posted July 2, 2011 | E-mail the Author
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Demon King Daimao is a recent anime release by Sentai Filmworks. This comedic fantasy series begins by introducing a friendly new student named Akuto Sai, a young guy who is entering the Constant Magic Academy. It's a unique school created specifically for students studying and using magic. The first day of class doesn't go exactly as he imagined it though. There's a weird looking bird (which is basically enacting the same role as the sorting hat found in Harry Potter) who tells students what their future career will be. Unlike most of the other students (who are told they will become exactly what it is they want to be) he hears something very different. Akuto is told he will become the Demon King (a position that no one would want to proclaim as it strikes fear and distrust in the other students). Poor Akuto only wanted to come to the school so he could become some kind of priest. Obviously, that is a rather big difference!

Imagine a combination of any anime series featuring a male protagonist surrounded by a rather ridiculous high number of women clamoring over said guy as a romantic interest and a fantasy favorite such as Harry Potter (when the school means weird occurrences and freaky predictions over our charming lead character). It's definitely an odd mix that won't appeal to everyone but it's an intriguing enough setup for a short anime series such as this one. The 12 episode length ultimately seems to be both a benefit and a detriment to this entertaining if ultimately somewhat underwhelming series though.

The series introduces a large number of scantily clad young women and is quick to make them become fully nude. The amount of "fan service" (as anime fans like to call it) is huge, and the amount of sexual material featuring full on nudity is probably dramatically higher in this series. It's all meant to stimulate a young male audience and that is likely the audience which this series will appeal to the most. The unfortunate thing is that the romantic and the dramatic moments sprinkled throughout the series would be fitting for younger audiences and both men and women could probably enjoy the show equally if it focused more on the story elements which provoke the most interest. Instead this is a series that feels borderline pornographic at times.

Another issue with the show is that it essentially spends 2/3rds of the episodes building up comedic sexual relationships between the characters and on the zany situations involving the notion of Akuto becoming the Demon King and then in the final set of episodes things change wildly and the focus returns to the story and actual plot & character development. This might sound promising, but surprisingly the earlier episodes are the more entertaining ones as they feature laugh out loud moments and the wide cast of supporting characters is interesting and well-established whereas the conclusion seems rushed and even forced. The overall enjoyment level of the series can also wildly shift between episodes (some are more compelling and better made than others). It makes it hard to consider this a series worth a genuine recommendation but there are certainly a number of elements that make this worth checking out for some anime fans -- it's hilarious at times and has a great premise. It's just too bad that the end result is something undeniably mixed and only mildly satisfying.

The DVD:


Video:

Demon King Daimao is presented on DVD in the original broadcast aspect ratio of 1:85:1 widescreen with anamorphic enhancement for 16:9 television displays. The show displays a wide range of colors (both bright and dark) and the reproduction is strong for most of the series but never as vibrant as one might hope. It's a nice release but one that show's room for improvement (not only in color saturation but in clarity as well). The series is smooth looking on DVD, with clean animation, but it is usually a somewhat soft presentation as well.

Audio:

The series is presented with two Dolby Digital 2.0 tracks with both the original Japanese language dub and the English language dub. Viewers should be pleased with either audio track as both options are successful at reproducing the dynamics of the sound and both sound equally impressive as dubs as well. The audio is disappointing without a 5.1 surround sound option though the actual options included contain balanced dialogue reproduction, sound effects, and music.


Extras:

There are very few extras on this DVD release. The only inclusions are a set of uncensored production sketches, clean opening & closing animation, and trailers promoting other Sentai Filmworks releases.  It's a decidedly average selection without much of interest.

Final Thoughts:

Demon King Daimao is an entertaining series for much of its run but the nature of the series is inconsistent and the show doesn't seem to fully know if it wants to be a comedy or an action-packed fantasy. The surplus amount of female nudity also limits the audience. Lastly, Harry Potter fans will probably be disappointed with how much this series borrows elements from that series (even if both creations are vastly different in the long run). The PQ/AQ is pleasing enough but underwhelming and the supplemental features are lackluster. Rent It.

Neil Lumbard is a lifelong fan of cinema, and a student who aspires to make movies. He loves writing, and currently does in Texas.

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