DVD Review: The World God Only Knows Complete Series One Collection
12 episodes over 2 discs!
Anime series about computer games are quite popular among the Japanese audiences at the moment. Baka and Test is one that springs to mind, but there are many more. As most technology comes from Japan, and the gaming industry as a whole has taken off greatly, this anime is an example of what happens when school kids get embroiled in hand held gaming devices like the PSP.
The World God Only Knows is seen through the eyes of Katsuragi Keima, a middle school student who is fascinated by his new game. He enjoys it so much he practically lives and breathes it. Everywhere he goes he carries his PFP (as it is called in the anime) with him ignoring the real world around him. If it was up to him he would live in the game full time. The only break he gets from it are when his teachers get annoyed at him using it during lessons, or other girls try to get his attention. Keima finds the real world absurd and irrational, and regards the girls in it with the same distain. He seems to wish everyone would leave him alone and let him get on with his gaming. As expected, he isn’t likely to be left in peace for long.
Keima gets excellent grades in his tests at school, but doesn’t seem to put the same sort of effort in as the other students and gets reminded of it by his teachers. In gaming circles he is knows as the god of conquests as he can conquer any girl in 2D games to fall in love with him. Outside of this inner world, other students have a different view of him; as a boring geek with glasses which he won’t shake any time soon.
Viewers will get the distinct impression he has been gaming for a while, and when he is challenged by a mystery gamer, he rises to it as he would with anyone else. His challenger, however is Elsie, a demon from Hell, and is part of the Loose Soul Team and Keima just signed a contract with her to help find and bring back loose souls. Just in case he doesn’t go along with her plan, she’s attached a collar around his neck that will explode if he doesn’t cooperate.
Elsie doesn’t look like your typical soul reaper though; she is cute with a pink boa, a broom and a small skull on the right side of her head whose eyes glow red when a loose soul is around. Just as in the game he plays Elsie tells him he has to make girls fall in love with him, but he has one problem, he doesn’t have any experience with real girls – it’s exactly the opposite. Loose souls are evil spirits who have attached themselves to humans who have hate in their hearts, so if he can make them fall in love with him, then the loose soul would leave the person and be taken back to where it belongs by Elsie. Elsie is a naïve girl who acts nothing like a demon from Hell. She calls him “Divine One,” due to his high score in the game and she thinks Keima can leave his gaming world behind and go off with her to chase these lost souls, but it isn’t as easy as she thinks to take him away from something he’s hopelessly addicted to. The two of them don’t get on, and when Elsie tries to pass herself off as his kid sister in order to get close to him at school, that doesn’t go well either.
The episodes go into each lost souls attachment to individual humans, one story is about an athlete who goes to the same school as Keima, a spoilt little rich girl who thinks everyone should be in awe of her, and a lonely artist who wants to have a friend she can draw are only a few of the rich characters who act as obstacles for Keima to overcome.
The World God Only Knows has a hidden message of not living in a dream world when the world outside is so full of amazing people and opportunities. The anime is fun and isn’t short on laughs.
Label: Manga Entertainment
Release date: 8 Oct 2012
Running time: 325 mins
Director: Shigehito Takayanagi
Sandie has a keen interest in Anime, Manga and all things Japanese. Her interests other than reviewing are Japanese Language, dress and culture, liking Harajuku Girls, Gothic Lolita, folding some neat Origami, drawing her own Manga characters, writing her own Manga stories and everything in between.