This is me on my weekends.
High School DxD just keeps on delivering the goods. That scene with Akeno, for instance, was everything I wanted to see and more. Issei and Gasper’s training sesh was absolutely side-splitting. Whatever you might have against the premise and story itself, the delivery of all the jokes is just so impeccable I can’t find anything that could get in the way of my enjoyment.
Quick side note before I get to the meat of the review, though. As you might be aware, I watch this anime raw so I can get the posts out as promptly as possible. I have never realised how unintentionally funny the dialogue is with subtitles. Now there were some pretty funny lines in this episode, like this exchange (translation mine):
Issei: Let’s work towards our dream, Gasper!
*cue dramatic, emotional music*
Issei: Hurry up and learn how to stop time so I can grope some female bodies!
Issei: You get it, right?! Since you are my cute kouhai, let your heart become a demon!
Gasper: Yes! I was wrong! Issei-senpai!
Asia: How touching…!
Issei: Right! Come at me, bro! *throws up ball*
Gasper: Yes, Issei-senpai! *puts on his game face*
Gasper proceeds to stuff up completely.
Gasper is one hell of a manly man.
The thing is that this scene would be funny even if you had no idea what the characters were saying, but it wasn’t until I forced myself to type up a rough translation that I realised the sheer brilliance of this show’s dialogue. I don’t think I could capture it with my feeble skills. This shit is genius. Kaji Yuki might overact in every role he’s ever gotten, but it really works here. Also, I can’t help but feel sorry for him and wonder if he gets embarrassed saying so many perverted lines. He seems to get a lot of perverted roles in general.
There was a plot this episode too
Plot-wise, we can summarise the most important events of this episode quickly enough. The newcomer angel guy – Michael, who is dressed in curiously oversized armour – gives Issei a shining sword because, being the weakest Boosted Gear user, he thinks he needs it. But the most important event was the conference between Michael, the school council members and Azazel.
I think I’m starting to see where this all is headed, at least in the short term. Azazel is a Fallen Angel, which Issei despises, but as we saw last episode, he’s capable of helping out the protagonists whenever he feels like it. And in this episode, Issei was thinking about Azazel as a potential teacher, however briefly. My guess is that Azazel will eventually prove to be a good guy, or at least a very useful asset. Otherwise, Issei can’t overcome his natural weaknesses, which is, as we’ve seen time and time again, such a key element of High School DxD’s plot.
What gives me the indication that the story will move this way is Akeno’s past. She tells Issei that she was half a Fallen Angel in her past and asks straight out if he still accepts her. Now that puts Issei into a moral dilemma, seeing as his ex-gf was a Fallen Angel and a monumental bitch. That being said, I don’t think the dilemma was all that difficult for him, not with Akeno looking so unexpectedly vulnerable and cute. So him telling Akeno that she was still his friend and that he really, really likes her was of absolutely no surprise. I’m surprised she thought of it as a surprise.
This is really just a matter of personal opinion, but I think Akeno is better-looking than Rias. Also, Rias is too jealous and clingy at times and therefore a little boring to watch. The one interesting aspect about her relationship with Issei is that he does, to some extent, close her off emotionally despite his admiration of her and that’s what causes her to feel increasingly insecure about herself. In a way I bet it probably strikes herself as out-of-character, not that Issei ever notices this because he is a Dense Male Lead.
But Akeno’s scene was more interesting because we can actually see her feelings evolve in front of our eyes. There’s this greater sense of her being conquered, if that makes sense. The part where she disrobed and showed Issei her wings also struck me as surprisingly tasteful and sensual, rather than fanservice for the heck of it.
I was not an Akeno fan before, but this episode sure did a lot to change that.
My Coverage of High School DxD New: