A Supernatural comedy that focuses on the daily life of a young man who works at a fast food restaurant, oh and he also happens to be the devil.
Devil is a Part Timer (also known as Hataraku Maou-sama!) is a thirteen episode action comedy series about the demon lord Maou and his right hand man Ashiya. The two escape their land as they are attacked by a great hero, and after going through a magical portal find themselves stuck in modern day Japan with no way of getting home.
With no understanding of their newfound world or how humanity operates, the two must hide in plain sight until they can gather enough magic to enslave Japan and return home. In order to do this, Maou decides to get a job working at a fast food chain called MgRonalds and try to earn enough money to take over the world.
The plot for Part Timer is as ludicrous as it sounds, but it’s so self aware and proud of itself that you can’t help but fall in love with it.
While it starts off as a comedy series about whacky situations, it quickly evolves into something much deeper once more heroes and villains are introduced. As more and more characters are thrown into the fray (such as Maou’s co-workers and heroes from his own land) the entire show grows in scale.
Different people have different goals in this new world, and will do their best to achieve those goals, often with comical outcomes. But the best thing is that these outcomes aren’t failures that result in comedy, but unluckily victories that are comedic because they are slightly believable.
Having KFC hire secret agents to spy on people seems like a farfetched idea, but somehow is scarily possible.
The greatest strength in the show is the characters. As not only does the show has fantastically written characters, but also attempts to break many pre-conceptions of stereotypical archetypes. Things aren’t so black and white, just because people keep saying something is good doesn’t make it good, and vice versa.
When the legendary hero travels to Japan in hopes of defeating Maou, she begins to doubt her moral compass when she sees that he’s no longer an evil being, and is in fact doing his best to help others. Maou never states that what he did in the past was ever evil or unjust, allowing others to perceive his actions and judge them for themselves.
Because at the end of the day he’s never really doing anything for himself, he’s always attempting to do what he thinks is best for others.
These kind of complex and misunderstand characters are all over Devil is a Part Timer, and make the show even more enjoyable. And the show is already a joy to watch.
The only real issue with Devil is a Part Timer is the lack of a real conclusion. While the show has many epic battles and showdowns with enemies, the arcs wrap up nicely without nudging the overall story forward at all. The actual story ends on episode 12, and the last episode is just a filler episode for all the characters to meet up again after the climax of the last battle.
While it’s nice to see the characters all back together, it doesn’t answer any of the linger questions many would of had since episode one. And annoyingly it has one of those “Read the manga” endings that many of us hate oh so much.
Another plus to add to the long list is the dub. The English dub is not only great, but changes and adds to some of the humour to make it more relevant to western audiences. While it was nothing mind blowing (like the Psycho-Pass dub), it shows that with time and effort a dub can be fantastic at translating comedy between cultures.
To describe The Devil is a Part Timer in two words, it’s fun. The adventure kicks off with a bang and never slows down from there. It’s an action packed and well written fantasy tale of those who just want to achieve their dreams and make others happy, while also laughing along the way. I would recommend The Devil is a Part Timer to every anime fan who’s ever found enjoyment in the medium. It’s not one to be missed.
Should you watch The Devil is a Part Timer?
OH MY YES
Thanks to Manga UK for supplying a review copy