「喧嘩,売ります!」 (Kenkauri Rimasu!)
“I pick a fight!”

I was pretty busy this past week, what with the job, the partying and all the beautiful women that were chasing after me (note: two of those things are a lie), so when it came time to watch this episode I had completely forgotten about the whole fiancé / Rias-senpai’s virginity teaser from last week. I was reminded really quickly though. But should a devil really be wearing white? I’m not sure about that, but it’s undeniable that Rias-senpai looks amazing in a wedding dress. Dream-Issei was smart to just go along with it. I would have too. Wooee!

So it’s back to srs bsns this week with the introduction of Raizer Phoenix (Takehito Koyasu), Rias-senpai’s fiancé and a first-class douchebag. Once again DxD is reminding us how terribly subtle it’s not. Raizer is just so easy to hate, with his cocky attitude, crude womanizing and fifteen-strong harem of full of beautiful girls. The bastard. Of course, this will make his downfall very satisfying to watch. Still, I feel another opportunity was lost, to introduce a more interesting antagonist. Ah well, I’ve come to expect this from DxD, so not much disappointment to be had. He’s a bastard and he deserves to get whooped, we’ve got it. Moving on.

What was done better were the hooks that were placed throughout the episode. They kept having interesting things start to happen, and then zoomed off somewhere else (another scene, a commercial break, the end of the episode, etc) and made us wait for it. That said, the problem was that they already ruined the reveal in last episode’s preview! Take the magic circle that appears while Rias-senpai was alone in the clubroom. Had they not already revealed the son-in-law thing, I wouldn’t have known what that was about, and would have been intrigued. As is, I just went “Oh, it’s something about Rias-senpai’s bastard fiancé,” and then went on to enjoy naked Asia (yummy). If, on the other hand, they hadn’t dropped that little tidbit in the previous preview, I (as a non-light novel reader) would have been wondering what was going on there. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m all for teasers that keep the watcher coming back for more, but using the whole “Rias-senpai wants Issei to deflower her” was more than enough to get butts in the seat this week, and we still would have been left wondering why she suddenly wanted to jump Issei’s bones. It’s like the whole problem of OP sequences giving away plot points (though this seems to be somewhat less prevalent now-a-days, thank the gods)…spoilers are no fun, but it’s especially bad if the studio themselves are the ones to do it! This episode’s pacing was good, but that one thing robbed it of its effectiveness. Minus 10 points for TNK. Now go sit in the corner and think about what you’ve done. Bad anime studio!

In other news, the parallels with Zero no Tsukaima grew again this week when it was revealed that Boosted Gear (Fumihiko Tachiki) can do more than just call attacks Nanoha-style. The second he called dream-Issei “aibou”, it was like meeting Derflinger all over again. Personally, I’m excited about this. I have a feeling Boosted Gear will be more important to the plot than the afore-mentioned magical sword, but even if it’s not I won’t mind. I’ve always thought the idea of characters that are small enough to carry around and are always with you was a really neat one, whether they’re a sentient weapon, an animal familiar, or just a disturbingly talkative voice in your head (okay, maybe not that last one). It’s like having a, well, a partner that is always there for you…kind of can’t not be there, in this case, which might very well be a form of hell for Boosted Gear (stuck with Issei forever? eeee…), but is real neat for our heroic pervert. Now he’ll never be lonely! Although certain, ahem, “alone time” activities could get real awkward if he’s a leftie. Poor Boosted Gear.

Overall, this episode did it’s job of setting up the coming Ratings Game showdown. With Rias-senpai’s crew at a 3-to-1 disadvantage versus douchebag’s fiery harem, things certainly aren’t looking good. Still, that will just make their eventual victory all the sweeter. If there’s one thing that is pretty cliché but I’m looking forward to anyway, it’s a good old fighting competition. I’m reminded of the tournament arcs of Dragonball Z, Negima and even Fairy Tail as of late. Unlike with do-or-die battles, when it’s a competition the protagonists can actually lose, since even if they do the entire story won’t grind to a halt on account of their untimely deaths. So, once the protagonists are free to lose, uncertainty is created, and Stilts is correspondingly interested. It means that for at least a few fights, us non-light novel readers will have no idea who will win, and that’s where some really awesome fights can happen. But before that, Issei needs to get some training in, training which apparently includes Issei in an apron and Akeno-senpai’s “dai damēji”. Personally, I’m translating that into “There’s no kill like overkill.” Ahhh Akeno-senpai, a woman after my own heart!

Other thoughts:

Full-size images: 01, 06, 14, 15, 21.

 

Preview

71 Comments

    1. Quantity has a quality of its own. (bonus history nerd points for anyone who recognizes the man who said that!)
      I think Issei has found his life role model now. He will challenge him, defeat him and become master of his own harem. There can be only one harem king! (per show,anyway)

      ewok40k
    1. o_O Raizer even got the wincest end?! as if having two sets of twins isn’t enough D=

      DAAAAMN YOOOOOU RAIIIIZER!!

      Ah well, Issei still has better quality… or will have, I hope.

      Beedle
      1. Show Spoiler ▼

        mike
  1. As hard as it is to believe, they actually toned down Raiser being an asshole. Although with that toning down, they might have skipped an important plot point for next episode. This is what was supposed to happen which would be integral for Ise in the next episode and what Ise will say in the final episode. I just feel the need to write this since it’s a good build-up for the next episode and for the conclusion.

    Show Spoiler ▼

    Whookie
    1. They also toned down Issei’s cockiness about his Sacred Gear.
      He was all “I has God-killing gauntlet! You no match for me!”
      And then…splat!
      But I think everyone gets it that Raiser’s a bastard.
      A bastard with a fantastic harem though. Damn.

      Many thanks Stilts for the delicious images. Yum.

      belatkuro
    2. Isn’t the author technically making all these villages assholes because it activates Issei’s powers? Since Issei’s Gear depends on his emotions, then these villains have to be the most boorish, irrationally evil bastards this earth has ever seen.

      If Issei was fighting a well-mannered, rational person due to something like differing ideals, he would probably be defeated pretty easily.

      Moeronic
  2. If it wasn’t for the fact this was 12 episodes only (I think its only 12), I think we would be seeing more depth given to this show. As such, they are just trying to keep it as close to the source material as they can without screwing things up. The end of episode 12 will probably be the end of volume 2.

    Oh, and Boosted-kun is very more plot related than Derf. By a bunch.

    …I’m saddened that volume 3 won’t be animated, because that’s when things pick up.

    Kageho
  3. I’m with you Stilts… DAMN YOU ISSEI!!! >_<

    His status got ramped up to luckiest guy in the universe when Rias made a move on him like that. Hearing Hikasa Yoko speak such words… good lord…. its like igniting a furnace in the hearts (or is it pants :P) of guys everywhere….

    Euzio
  4. Oooooh, Raiser deserves a Touma-style punch to the face! Really wonder what special training can pump up Issei enough to be able to do that.

    Also, since Raiser has a full complement of 15 chess pieces with himself as King, then that means he has 8 lvl1 pawns that should be small fry. I wonder what piece the hakama girl was that knocked out Issei.

      1. I’m sure the promotion property will come into play when Issei fights later, but I’m not sure a school counts as enemy territory. I kind of think that Raiser and his harem are arrogant enough not to deem his fiance as an enemy.

        Also, promotion to Queen requires the potential capacity to do so which I hope the lvl1 pawns don’t have. Just rook power was probably enough to knock out Issei.

      2. Well, since this is a Rating game that is a popular thing in Hell,
        there will be a specially prepared field for them and the definition of
        enemy territory will be in play there.
        And it’s not like all of them will do a Promotion. Just saying that don’t take
        them lightly even if they’re Pawns. It’s 8 against one(Issei) in terms of a matchup against pieces(pawns).
        They left this out here or maybe this will be mentioned later but Raiser has never lost in
        a Rating game yet and this is Rias’ first battle. So yeah, the odds are even higher.
        But yeah, there’s no way they would lose as protagonists always win.
        Or do they?

        belatkuro
  5. @Stil:
    I disagree, only because of no distractions (knowing what the magic circle in Rias room is), can I fully enjoy the next scene (Asia).
    Is it just me or does Asia not look like an Asian?

    Dam you maid who interrupted RiasXIse

    deafvader
  6. indeed a lot damn you but make more HMM like ONORE ISSEI for wedding fantasy & almost got risa’s virgin also ONORE for giving those two guys the “magical muscle” & ONORE RAISER D-BAG for having 15 women some them are HO-SKI!!!

    this is indeed ONORE DECADE!!!

    back to seriesv sum it all up

    now we got a rating game?

    issei dream of going married rias then some person & his arm.
    those 2 guys asking issei for girl & yea issei sorta got “one” for those two.
    “locker looking” but end in koneko punch.
    issei scream like a girl seeing asia in nothing some talk then oops your mom.
    going buddha but FAIL then rias want to give her virgin to issei?!
    look like could happen but here come rias’ brother maid.
    next day two guys are tick off cause “one” mention is muscle magical yea more brain bleach.
    meeting time & say hello raiser phoenix give really total jerk.
    even got 15 females yet doing yea issei do us a favor grit his teeth.
    but denied for now.

    next ep issei on training.

    CAPTAIN MAR-KLAC-VELOUS
  7. So much… awesomeness. Who cares about plot as long I can see Rias-sempai and Asia-chan in (or without) their unmentionables is more than enough. Aside from that, Issei gets my respect for being the reckless yet kind-hearted person.
    A kind, harem king.

  8. All I can say is, I really wish the deflowering continued – since DxD is practically shameless in its uncensored fanservice anyway, why not go all the way? 🙁 Still, awesome episode!

    MarkBadong
    1. “Serious business”. That’s usually used when someone is taking things too seriously, which isn’t really the case here, but what can I say…I’m a fan of exaggeration : )

      Stilts
  9. set up episode, but still awesome to see… funny how Issei want to be become harem king but can’t even do anything (anything real) to the girls who would willingly let him do it… (that is what I liked about this guy anyway)
    boosted gear indeed has a more significant role in the story, though I doubt they will get that far in this adaption 🙁 we need a sequel for that, hopefully…
    can’t wait for the training and especially when Issei learned “that” Show Spoiler ▼

    jrj
    1. I was die laughing when he explain how he learn that ability, then every give me that look of ~_~………………….

      Same reaction when he learn his second ability, oppai speaking.

      Issei and his strange but scary ability, only for women thou.

      anri
  10. Issei… for not eating the meal you were delivered, I deduct 50 Harem points, but I also add 100. Holding back shows he cares and treasures more than just their bodies, and that caring really backs him into a corner, especially with Asia. Still, being in a corner is a good thing when the girls surround you all on their own! XD For a “pervert” he’s actually rather kind in all the right ways.

    I look forward to seeing Issei grill up some Pheonix…

    Personally I think white suits Rias rather nicely… not as much as purple would, but I’m not complaining! :X

    Aex
    1. He’s got nekomimi twins (I’m guessing they’re twins, anyways) and pettanko twins, on top of wincest. He didn’t even have to use a toothbrush to get wincest, too D:<

      Raizer is a formidable foe indeed ò_-

      btw, is it just me or is it hard to take the plot seriously when the characters are referred to as chess pieces? Apart from that, I'm enjoying the story as much as the fanservice 😀

      Beedle
  11. ONORE raiser really 15 women harems from some twins, cat female, blonde, doobi, etc really some of them might be HOE-SKI!!!

    ONORE indeed on this besides i bet when the day issei get his harem is more YES than that.

    CAPTAIN MAR-KLAC-VELOUS
  12. 15 pieces pfft…

    Isn’t the rule that a piece is more powerful if it represents more pieces. Like Issei’s 8-pwns > 1-pwn demon?

    *Looks at the first round of posts*

    Har har! Everyone feels NTR’ed.

    The Moondoggie
      1. But still out-matched. In Pokemon or D.O.T.A. trying to fight someone with a higher level than you is a no go. Specially when the one they are fighting against is a horny demon who is looking to be the Harem King.

        The Moondoggie
    1. I wouldn’t exactly say NTR’ed. More like “You bastard! How did you get such an achievement before ME!?”

      Anyways, just read volume 2 of the light novel and… damn, I’m so glad I picked this up again! I do hope the anime will remain faithful to the novel with the Rating Game and beyond, because boy will we be in for an amazing treat!

      And, I guess I can now understand why Kaji Yuki was cast as Issei, if they do show his inner monologue. Props to Issei, he deserves a harem! Orimura Ichikia, he is not!

      Beedle
  13. Think the anime is dissapointing so far compared to the Light Novels.
    I would give this a 6/10 will I would give the Light Novels a 8/10.
    Wish they stick to the Light Novels plot more.

    Revassin

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