The Devil Is a Part-Timer!, Vol. 8

By Satoshi Wagahara and 029. Released in Japan by ASCII Mediaworks. Released in North America by Yen Press. Translated by Kevin Gifford.

Well, I’d talked about how much I love the daily life scenes in this series, and that’s still true. The author even throws in a classic one right at the beginning just to soften us up. But yeah, those days are, if not gone for good, at least gone for now. Because one of Maou’s larger flaws is tending to act impulsively and worry about consequences after the fact, and so the events of the 6th book are coming back at him with a vengeance. I won’t say that he ends the book completely defeated, but what with most of the cast being captured or incapacitated in some way, things aren’t looking good. I also said in the review of Vol. 6 that I suspected we’d be headed back to Enta Isla, and while we aren’t there yet, it’s very clear that we’re setting up a book or two over there next time. Fortunately, despite all these events, the writing remains first rate.

Yes, that’s a new girl on the cover, and if you think she looks like Alas Ramus, you’re on the right track. Her personality seems to be ‘hyperactive child’, despite appearing to be about 13 or so, and Maou has a lot more trouble dealing with her, which doesn’t bode well for his fatherhood skills when Alas Ramus grows up. (Can Alas Ramus grow up?) Of course, Maou is a little bit stressed out, mostly as Emi and Alas Ramus returned to Enta Isla for a visit and have not come back, despite it being well past the time she said she would. Leaving aside the wisdom of Emi returning to Enta Isla after the events of the previous books (Emi is fairly straightforward, so I can see her doing this), the absence makes Maou realize just how much Emi is a part of his life now. Of course, he doesn’t realize this right away, but takes most of the book, and a few talking tos by Chiho and Suzuno, in order to grasp it. Oh yes, and the worst part – he’s trying to get a motor scooter license (for the job, of course), and was so stressed he failed the exam! Which means more expenses.

Emi’s absence is not just noted by the fantasy characters, of course. First of all, if this takes much longer she’s going to need to look for a new job, as she’s currently AWOL at the call center. Secondly, Rika is very upset about the whole thing, and she runs to Ashiya is case he knows anything and ends up caught up in the attack on Japan that the forces of evil have launched to destroy Maou’s “demon generals”. The book balances on an edge as to whether Ashiya is going to tell her all about them or not, but of course he’s spared the choice by the bad guys showing up. The last half of the book has a lot of cool fight scenes, which if they ever do Season 2 of this series will look quite good animated, and Chiho gets to act cool. Still, there’s no getting around that Maou is in trouble, Emi is in trouble, Ashiya is in trouble, and those who can help are either too human or too injured. Excellent stuff, but now we have to wait to see what happens next.

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