Archenemy and Hero (Maoyuu Maou Yuusha) Review

Archenemy and Hero (Maoyuu Maou Yuusha) Wallpaper G4meover

If you could save the world, would you team up with a Demon King? 



“Keeping all the wealth for yourself may make you rich, but it won’t make you prosperous. You give people money, and they spend it. True prosperity comes from a free flow of wealth and goods.”

Demon King

15 years ago, a catastrophe led the world of Demons to spill over into the Human realm, sparking a war between the two races causing millions of deaths across both sides. Inspired by his destiny to defeat the Demon King and reclaim the world for all of humanity, our hero (only ever referred to as Hero) makes his way alone through scores of horrific creatures and finally reaches the throne room of the Demon King’s castle.

Hero enters the room, steeled in his quest to defeat the Demon King, and raises his sword high with a killer intent, only to be stopped in his tracks by a beautiful, horned woman dressed in red. The woman introduces herself as the Demon King and proposes an opportunity to the stunned Hero; forget his deadly quest, join in her own goal to end the war without either side being wiped out, and resign himself to be completely hers in a ritual reminiscent of marriage.

To break the silence and add volume to her proposal, the Demon King goes on to explain exactly how the war between the two races has been an economic and sociological wonder for the human race; not only has the production of food and weaponry increased but the majority of humanity have banded together for the first time over a common goal (even if that goal is the extermination of the demon race).

Hero eventually agrees after being swayed by the Demon King’s words and enters into a binding contract ready for his new life commanding demons, working with his religion’s church and promoting the Demon King’s message of prosperity, equality and peace…

MMY

Now, most of what I write about on this site are things I’ve previously watched/read and enjoyed, but there are very few series that grip me in such a way that after watching the first episode, I immediately resign myself to watching the entire thing in one sitting (some notable examples being Death Parade, Time of Eve and Log Horizon) and Archenemy and Hero has happily been added to that list.

The very original story puts a twist on the classic Holy Warrior vs Demon plot but also manages to avoid the “I’m a Demon but I won’t do evil things because I’m in love with a goody” trap. Here we have an intelligent character who recruits a Hero and aims to fix the world through political and economic knowhow without being boring, condescending or monotonous (which I appreciate because I usually fall asleep during anime that involves politics).

Pros/Cons! Pros: original story; nice artwork; solid character/world development. Cons: slight plotholes; very fast paced; no resolution to some relationships. 

Apart from the lovely character designs and animation, the main plus point for this series is that not only do the characters each have a tangible purpose in the story but that you actually see genuine development from start to finish which is often rare in a 12-episode anime.

Looking on the negatives of this series, I can say that the ‘non-relationship’ relationship that the Hero and Demon King share started to irritate me by the end of the series; here we have two characters who clearly have feelings for each other and express their desires to be with one another but hardly get anywhere in their actual relationship, keeping their distance for some reason which is never fully explained. Another point to consider is the bittersweet ending; while the conclusion of the series leaves the world/plot open, I would really like to have seen some of the events that take place after the characters’ final plans come to fruition.

Archenemy and Hero Logo


Episodes: 12

Genre: Fantasy / Romance / Adventure

Age Rating: Teen (13+ )

Animation Studio: Arms

Licensed by: Anime on Demand (UK), Sentai Filmworks (US) and Madman Entertainment (AUS)

So what do you think? Have a think and let us know in the comments section below.


– Isaac

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