“Mairimashita! Iruma-kun,” or “Welcome to Demon School, Iruma-kun!” for English speakers is a show that’s a clear diamond in the rough this anime season. Competing against big name series like “Chainsaw Man” and the new season of “Bleach,” I’d like to talk a little bit about this surprisingly relaxing story that you can start your Saturday mornings with if you’re a fan of anime.
“Mairimashita! Iruma-kun” follows the story of a young teen, Iruma Suzuki, who doesn’t have the best luck, as his biological parents decided that it would be a good idea to offer their only child up to a demon in the hopes of buying a nice bottle of wine. As you watch the show, it would seem that this isn’t the worst thing that his parents have done to him.
Thankfully, Iruma’s luck turns for the better as the demon in question — an old man named Sullivan — is looking to have a grandson since he feels he is too old to have any actual children. Iruma, now granted with the opportunity to have a relatively normal home life and access to education through the school Sullivan runs, starts off our story wanting nothing more than to lay low and not be found out as a human out of fear of what would happen to him.
Something of note about the story is that it tends to rely on character personality and dynamics to help sell the comedy of it. With almost all named characters being eccentric in their own way, it can be a lot to handle, but it keeps even the most minor characters memorable and enjoyable to watch.
The mangaka, Osamu Nishi, also seems to be excited about how her characters have grown over the course of writing and specifically stated on her twitter “I can scream in front of the TV again!! I want to see Iruma and others rampaging in the new field as soon as possible!!” It is easy to understand her excitement as she has a clear knack for emphasizing joy and relief through her art.
It also helps that Bandai Namco Pictures has remained pretty true to her vision, opting to lean into the silliness of the story’s premise in the hopes that all of the characters have a chance to show off their own appeal.
Season one aired in 2019, and this underdog of a story has since been renewed for a second, and now third season, which premiered earlier this month. It can be watched on Crunchyroll.
The third season consists of two main tournament arcs. Fans of anime may understand where I’m going with this, but to those who aren’t aware, this means that throughout the course of this season, our titular character and his classmates will be competing against each other in the hopes of potential glory and fame. In this case, the first half of the season will be a hunting exam in which the students will be asked to track down the wild beasts of the demon realm.
A colorful cast of characters and an even more vibrant array of monsters will take center stage as the students of the school race to be the “King of the Hunt,” a title that comes with a rank increase and notoriety within the school. All of the students in Iruma’s class have been assigned a tutor to help with their training, and Iruma gets the mysterious Barbatos Bachiko — a short, pink haired demon who is as in love with sweets as she is with bullying those she deems weaker than her.
Stakes for the hunting exam are raised when the class is told that everyone must perform well in this exam, or else they will collectively be sent to a classroom with bad facilities and even worse ventilation due to it being located near the school’s dumpster. Bachiko then refuses to train Iruma, which is a challenge for him, as he isn’t exactly used to hunting things with the ability to fight back.
Casual and heavily-invested fans of anime will each have something to gain from watching “Mairimashita! Iruma-kun,” as its campy, Halloween aesthetic helps to set the mood for the spookiest month of the year. a good watch if you want something wholesome and really easy to get into.
Photo courtesy of Akita Shoten, Wikipedia.