Episode 12 – The Demon Girl Next Door Season 2

Leave it to The Demon Girl Next Door to somehow manage to resolve the long-running conflict of Mikan’s curse, introduce an entirely new character with a fairly complex backstory, and manage a climax that gives basically every character in the show something to do—all in the span of just 20 minutes! If there is any single lesson that we need to take away from this wonderful second season of TDGNDit’s that only fools and charlatans would ever doubt Shamiko and her crew when it comes to getting the job done.

The main order of business that this finale has to deal with is introducing Ugallu, the adorable but catastrophically misguided familiar that has been latched onto Mikan’s soul and causing her so much trouble in the form of that pesky curse. In true Demon Girl form, we learn that Ugallu was never malevolent in her intentions; she was simply set up to fail when Mikan’s dad completely botched the summoning spell. Hilariously, in addition to screwing up the basics of the incantation, he apparently used a food offering of fried chicken doused in lemon juice (because of course he would), and all of these shenanigans resulted in Ugallu being both misinformed and denied any real information about the world outside of Mikan’s heart. Since she only had a vague understanding of her mission to “protect” Mikan, combined with the fact that she has no feedback to work with other than Mikan’s emotional response, poor Ugallu did the only thing she could: Lash out at literally everything around Mikan got upset.

It’s both funny and deeply sad to realize that Ugallu has been under the impression that she is just great at her job all of these years, and the poor creature’s utter heartbreak at learning otherwise is only magnified by her adorably broken speech patterns. Thankfully, despite Momo’s instinct to solve her problems with magical violence, Shamiko demands that her vassal find a solution that won’t result in Ugallu’s destruction, and Mikan is just as determined to preserve her familiar wayward’s life force. This is what leads to the re-summoning effort that gives every single character a role to play, which is the perfect way to give this episode the scope of a season finale, despite the show’s usually low-key vibes.

It’s also the funniest part of the episode. I was laughing hard at bits like Lico’s absurdly bright fried chicken concoction, poor Shirosawa getting his butt fluff plucked, and Ryo being yanked out of bed to help with the spell despite no clue what’s going on. We even get some extra support when Anri and the sports committee pitch in with drawing the summoning circle, which is an excellent bit of payoff given the work they did on the banner last week. The highlight of the whole episode, though, has to be when Mikan makes it clear that she considers the Ugallu family, and that the goofy little familiar will have a home no matter how bad she feels about screwing up her last job so much. It’s enough to bring a tear to this jaded old critic’s eye, it is.

And there you have it, an astoundingly charming and heartwarming finale to a season that was consistently delightful to watch, week after week. We had some big hits this season in shows like SPY x FAMILY and Kaguya-samaand this was already a bit of a cult favorite to begin with, but I hope that these reviews have helped broadened the audience of The Demon Girl Next Door, even if only a little bit. It’s a stellar slice-of-life comedy with some seriously impressive world-building and long-term storytelling, and I don’t think it has delivered a single poor episode in its entire run. The wait for Season 3 is going to be a long one, but don’t give up, Shami-fans! With any luck, we’ll see these girls again before too long/

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The Demon Girl Next Door Season 2 is currently streaming on HIDIVE.

James is a writer with many thoughts and feelings about anime and other pop-culture, which can also be found on Twitterhis blog, and his podcast.

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