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Nurarihyon no Mago

Jan 3, 2011

Summary - This is a mafia version about yokai (demons). Nura, who is a young teenager, has been obligated to become the successor for his family's clan of 100 demons.  He tries to avoid it, but cannot deny that powers and responsibilities that he will soon have. As the heir (he is 1/4 demon, 3/4 human), he can awaken his demon counterpart for 1/4 of a day. Though he can only do this at night, he has guardians with him at all times regardless. Nura and his clan fight against other groups of demons for territory. Nura's demon counterpart is considered to be one of the strongest demons, and is highly charismatic.

Story - 7.5 - it is pretty straightfoward and easy compared to the names that some of the characters have. Nura is to become successor for the clan of 100 demons that his grandfather has. Already at this point, the 100 demons refer Naru as their "master", so he has authority but does not really use it in the beginning. As story progresses and conflicts emerge, Naru plays more of a leadership role as the potential heir for the clan. Since Naru is part human as well, he is able to bond with few of his classmates. Not only becoming friends, but they form a demon club, dedicated to investigating demons (a little too easy-going if you ask me). But this club (even if it IS conveniently placed), provides some intel for Naru.

As I said, this is the mafia with demons. Territory and relationships consists of the important parts of the plot. Yes, this is about demons fighting each other for control, instead of demons vs. humans. Some humans are affected, but not much. There are a bunch of groups that follow the 100 demon clan, in which case I see a few types of demons (deities, animal types, certain abilities). In turn, the 100 demon clan protects the other groups. The main conflict of the series is a group of demons, called the 7 travelers, who fights for control of the city and 100 demon clan.

Looking at the show's tone, it is not very dark. it is viewed that the demon world has an organized society like that of the human world. Most of the demons are civilized. The show had brought up some points about demons, such as they like to play tricks on humans or eat them. There's only one or two points where such a situation occurs. There was a scene where even a good-hearted demon wanted to play tricks on humans. Since this character had mentioned it, I wanted to know what kind of tricks these demons supposedly play on humans, but they never show it. But the nature of this series show the good side of the demon world: A controlled and good-natured group of demons, who  either follows or are part the 100 demon clan.

Animation - 8.5 - At first i was impressed because it had that smooth but odd transitions when the perspective changes. It was a nice touch but it does not occur that often (nor is it always necessary), but other than that the visuals are as expected to the year. The most noticable graphics change is the viewing of the cherry blossom tree that is located at Nura's home. More effort went into this tree because it is more animated in comparison to most other animes. The branches and leaves are more flowing, which makes it more realistic.

Characters- 7- Talking about the human cast first, they dont really serve much purpose besides providing some humor or being valuable to Naru (the "They are my important friends, i Shall protect them"). This makes up some of the dialogue, so i guess it is somewhat important. There are very small backstory behind the human characters. One or two flashbacks of how demons affected two of the human characters in the past. This makes up 2 episodes, which i consider to be the filler episodes. It feels like the "random monster of the week," as hardly any information is given about the characters. The humor of the show comes from one source, and that is the leader of the demon club. The consistency of his bad luck when playing demon poker with his friends is unbelievable. As the demon club founder, he always wants to see demons with his own two eyes. Despite his unbelievably accurate intel, he always looks away at the wrong time or arrives too late to see the demon. So the irony is that humans who are scared of demons always see them, but those who WANT to see them, won't. I thought this kind of humor was too consistent and only brought a chuckle once. Other than that, the other normal friends of Nura are just there for show.

Then there is yuri, a formidable demon hunter who travels to that area as a test to see if she can handle tough demons. She joins Nura's circle of friends later on. Once again, it is unbelievable that her feeble little mind cannot piece together that Nura is involved with demons, despite always saying that there are demon auras around Nura's house.

A quick note about Nura. I felt like punching his face since the first episode because of his innocent/'make everyone happy' personality. All the time do i see this type of personality, but I leave it as it is. I suppose its the easiest way to show maturity in a character when there is such a wide difference between beginning and end.

i thought many of the demons were too civilized. Since they are seen in their human form most of the time, I sometimes forgot they are supposed to be demons. The focused cast of demons that serve Nura are likable, but they did not make an impression besides just being Nura's guardians. The only one that stands out is the snow woman, who is one of Nura's personal guard. Her personality is distinguishing because of her cutey attitude. So the only downside for most of the demons shown is that they are not very memorable. Maybe some backstory on few of the characters could have fixed this.

Overall- 8- This show is enjoyable because i like the supernatural genre. Some aspects of the story was a little too consistent but the rest of it flows properly. Despite most of the characters are not exactly memorable, their special abilities helped diversify their character. My final thoughts, "Shouldn't have more humans died?" If a normal human is walking through a dark trail on a isolated mountain infested with demons, you'd think she's just die off. But hey, that would be depressing! None of that seriousness here.




7.5/10 story
8.5/10 animation
9/10 sound
7/10 characters
8/10 overall
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