Just how far will Iseei go to protect Asia? And is Asia picking up too many of Rias’ habits?
What They Say:
Issei gets another warning about the white dragon, and church followers bearing Holy Swords pay a visit to the devils.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
The opening episode of the new season didn’t exactly draw me in as much as I would have thought, but I did go in with some lowered expectations with it since second seasons like this don’t always get underway in a strong way. With the time between seasons and some of the enthusiasm reduced, and the less than strong ending sequence, the show just felt like it was trying a bit too hard in some ways. But at the same time, we did get to reconnect with the cast and it was just plain fun to be back with Issei and Asia in particular since there’s just such a fun bond between the two of them that leaves me wanting more. The show did start to lay the foundations of the season though, but that felt just a bit muted in some way.
Of course, as difficult as Issei’s life is at times because of Rias, you can’t get too sympathetic for him when you have him waking up with Rias and Asia each on an arm and all snuggled in good. It’s amusing to see how Asia has changed the more time she spends with Rias, but it’s a pretty natural direction for the character to go, though she certainly retains a lot of her innocence. Issei also has to deal with Ddraig, the dragon that has taken up residence inside of him and the kind of ages old battle that he’s engaged in as well. Though Ddraig can be a bit of a problem at times – such as when he calls Issei out on his continued perverted thoughts – he also brings a lot of power to the table and that helps the situation in whole, which is especially useful considering the way the Holy Sword situation appears to be turning.
This episode is relatively quiet overall, mostly working to reinforce some of the ideas behind what was going on with Excalibur and how all of that has progressed, but it also starts to move things forward in another interesting area. A few followers of God have come to Rias and her group with a couple of Holy Swords themselves. Their plan, amusing as it is, is to try and get Rias and her group to stay out of the fight that’s to come rather than for her devil side to fall in with the fallen angel that is at the heart of everything. That just shows how little these two new girls know about Rias, but it’s the kind of back and forth that works well to suss each other out in an open way and to have certain understandings out on the table with who is siding with who in such big events coming up. This also throws some questions, forceful ones, towards Asia considering her own origins, but it’s just welcome to see how Issei defends her since that is one of his best traits.
Highschool DxD New moves along decently here as it draws in a few new characters from God’s side and they cause a bit of trouble towards the end, including starting up a fight with the intention to not kill each other but just to fight for fun. That makes for a good teasing end point here for the next week and caps off an episode that is largely character focused. We get some minor background points in here about the Holy Swords and get to see a couple of them warming up for action, but we also get some good stuff with the core trio of Issei, Rias and Asia. It’s not terribly deep as they wear their emotions and loyalties on their sleeves, but it handles it all well and builds towards a decent end that does leave me wanting to see a good fight in the next episode.
Streamed By: FUNimation
Sony KDL70R550A 70″ LED 1080P HDTV, Apple TV via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.