Sin: Nanatsu no Taizai Review
Warning: The following review may/will contain spoilers of the series Sin: Nanatsu no Taizai. If you wish to stay clear of what happens in the show's story, please exit the tab, and join me once you've watched said show. Or, you know, you can take that warning with a grain of salt, and still read on anyway. Whatever floats your boat.
Anyways, with that said, thank you, and onto the review:
Let's start off with the fact that I don't typically watch fanservice shows. Granted, I have watched a few (and reviewed them), but I've never really felt drawn to them as a main source of entertainment. I'm still unsure about my sexual orientation, but I can guarantee you that I'm not 100% bonafide straight. If so, I'd probably find shows like this *points above* much more arousing than they actually are.
And to be honest, these types of series have so much stigma against them. Over-sexualizing its female characters, having clothing that only serves to get torn within 5 minutes, stories that are so flimsy that they match up with said clothes, and giving an excuse to shove in some added "yuri" in order to make it appeal more to its target audience. Which, let's be real, is probably middle-aged men using this medium to escape reality and get off from it.
The good news is that I have found quality fanservice anime, where despite problems, they still have other factors that make them not be complete dog crap. The bad news is that the series that are typically perceived as really bad turned out to be exactly that: bad.
"So Dazz, if you're not watching this show for an escape, fap material, or to have the excuse to see scantily-clad girls, why exactly did you start it in the first place?"
Yup, I've got nothing. Outside of the typical things that attract me to an anime series, there really wasn't anything new that appealed to me. The story (when it was announced, and yes, it's an actual one) sounded interesting, the demons looked cool, the animation promised to be good, and the cast looked pretty well-rounded. Also, I like stuff related to the Seven Deadly Sins. It was pretty standard, not gonna lie.
So, how exactly did Sin: Nanatsu no Taizai end up being? Was it horrid, like many other predecessors before it? Or did it have something more to it that elevated it from Trash to Kind of Good Content?
Well, here's the thing. By no means is this show excellent. The story is incredibly flimsy and doesn't know where it wants to go, most of the characters don't really go beyond various tropes, and the animation wasn't as consistent as I would have liked. Add in the fact that I wasn't a fan of 2 characters in Japanese, and Sin: Nanatsu no Taizai wasn't a show that really fit the bill for me.
But then again, there were some good elements. Once the trash factor of this show dials back, there's actually quality content buried underneath. Sure, the tonal shifts in terms of content don't really work all around, but they still offer me more than just seeing nipple sucking and girls being sexually tortured. There was creativity in how Lucifer faced off against the other demons, and in the characters that did have development, they at least tried to give them some sort of meaning. There was also a fun score to go along with it, and then there's the pretty dope English dub.
I guess it's time to dig in to this show and really see what's up. Anyone with me?
All right! Let's begin.
Lucifer, one of Heaven's top angels and the former leader of the Seven Heavenly Virtues, is cast out of Heaven after refusing to work with the other heavenly deities to bring about a new world order. On her way down into Hell, she crashes into a school-owned church, where a girl named Maria is there...for some reason (because #anime). Before she leaves Earth, Lucifer makes a pact with the human girl and infuses her with some of her angel's blood. After that, the fallen angel continues her descent into Hell.
Once she has arrived in the 9th (and last) circle in Hell called Coctyus, a fellow demon named Leviathan (or simply known as Levi), an aspiring Demon Lord, approaches Lucifer while she is still bound to her cross. After freeing her (and teasing her at the same time), Levi leads Lucifer to Pandemonium, the council chamber where the Seven Mortal Sins rule Hell from. Once they arrive, the former angel is brought under question by Satan, the Demon Lord of Wrath, and Belial, the Demon Lord of Vanity and proclaimed leader, for trying to invade Heaven, seeing as Lucifer is still technically an angel.
Both of the demons challenge her to a fight, and while the other Sins present (one is missing) aren't really in the mood for a battle royale, they follow along anyways because nobody should dare question their leader. Despite beating Belial at first and destroying her family sword, Lucifer is quickly overpowered by the other demons (aside from Levi) and is stripped of her wings and her power after the Demon Lord of Vanity recovers enough to seal it under several Garbs of Punishment.
But doing this accidentally turns Lucifer into a Demon Lord herself, and after declaring herself the Demon Lord of Pride (and the rightful leader of the Seven Mortal Sins), she vows revenge on the group of demons for humiliating her and sealing away her powers. She promises to take them on one by one in order to remove the Garbs so she can make a grand return to Hell. With Levi in tow, this newly-made demon is ready for the next stage of her plan.
When Lucifer returns to the church she crash landed in, she finds Maria praying, and stabs her in the heart...for no real reason, aside from the latter being immortal and getting eternal youth (because #anime). She later reveals that since she made the deal with Maria, her angel's blood gives the human unique quirks that could prove to be quite useful to her mission. This includes not being able to die when Lucifer takes her heart and seal it so that she's bound to her, and her nipples being able to locate where the other demon lords are residing if Lucifer licks them (yeah, I don't get that one either).
After retrieving Maria, Lucifer decides that a fancy hotel suite will be her base of operations, but it turns out her first opponent might just be under her nose. Levi, green with envy (ha ha) about Lucifer's attention towards Maria, tries to drive the latter away by sexually tormenting her in an elevator (LOVE IN AN ELEVATOR! LIVING IT UP 'TIL I HIT THE GROUND). After her swift defeat, Lucifer awakens the human's newly acquired abilities to see that one of the demons is located in Miami (I'm in Miami, bitch). From there, it's up to Lucifer and her crew to defeat the demons one by one, before finally going up to the one who christened herself the leader through a dirty hand, pun not intended. But what if things become unbalanced in the new demon's favor?
I'll be straightforward and say this story is an absolute mess. It does have its good aspects (such as the middle 4 episodes and the finale), but the tone is never constant and confused me a lot through its run. We start off with a standard typical FS anime: excuses to get the main girls naked, unneeded sexual scenes where the heroes are taken advantage of, a character being jealous of someone's affection to another, and a very campy feeling to the writing. Getting through the 3 episodes after the premiere was an absolute struggle, especially for Episode 2, which really nothing can save. It's just a bad episode all around in terms of its plot, and the dub couldn't do anything to redeem it outside of making its writing more tolerable.
But then, the tone completely switches during Episode 5, where the show decides to play up its ridiculousness and embrace it, especially when Lucifer and Maria become trapped in Belphegor's RPG, an eating contest ends with a trip to the hospital with Beelzebub, and following that, Satan almost destroys the world when she obtains a fleet to go against Lucifer before they end up fighting in space. What I got out of this was great, however, because it's where the characters weren't sexually tortured or had to get naked "for the plot." They faced real battles that actually felt significant and were pretty fun to watch, with a couple of bits that had me chuckling.
After the rest of the Demon Lords are defeated, though, the writing shifts back to the trashy side during Episode 9 for most of its run, before going darker for Episode 10 (along with having more pointless fanservice, though it did give me Belial saying the now forever iconic, "The wager will be your uterus" in the Japanese). We then went into a more exposition-filled episode in Episode 11, which was boring and had Lucifer and Maria naked in it for no reason whatsoever outside of showing their goods. After that, the finale had some typical finale writing (I think you can envision it), although there were some WTF moments (Lucifer watching over Maria since she was young, and the latter coming back to life following sacrificing herself so that Lucifer could regain consciousness to face Michael, her former companion, because a Deus ex Maria is our friend), but it did prove to be entertaining and at least engaging. Plus, it wasn't trashy.
Yeah, I know it's a bad sign when even I have a series that revolves around various male winged creatures being lewd with each other and that story has more coherence than this does.
Regardless, the writers were still creative with how Lucifer faced off against each Demon Lord, and that's a good thing. At least each battle wasn't the same over-sexualized one I've seen way too much of in the past few years. We got some, such as struggling against a tentacle-like creature (because of course we have to have that), pole-dancing, being whisked away to a mansion in the woods, and trying to withstand sanity while being restrained on a wooden horse with a blunted metal edge pressing on your hoo-hah. But then there's the RPG, the eating contest which leads to hospital bonding, and a good old smack down.
My favorite one was the battle against Astaroth, the Demon Lord of Melancholy. Rather than go balls to the wall, the writers of that episode played it tame with Lucifer and Astaroth having a song competition: who could sing a better version of Goddamn Critical and who could do the flashiest music video to an original song. It all ended in a live showdown, where the two demons sung a combined version of their music and had to see who got the most star power. It was surprisingly fun, and it was nice to see the two rivals be good-natured to each other.
You know, idol shows should keep this in mind. It'd be fun if cute little battles like this showed up a little more often, rather than competing for a girl via a lawyer TV drama, having mommy issues in place of something that could be deeper, or big grand competitions where *gasps* the winner's nearly impossible to choose. Some writers for these adaptations need to let loose and not be Why So Serious. It would make me less annoyed with them. That's my two cents, though.
So in the end, the actual plot for this anime wasn't the best, but it wasn't the worst either. While I did get a good batch of episodes in the middle, and the writers did have different battles for each of the Demon Lords, Sin: Nanatsu no Taizai did not start off on the best footing. That fact that I didn't drop this show in the beginning was an understatement, since that second episode turned me so off that I couldn't ask someone to "turn me on." But it did get turned around, despite the tone or content not being consistent as a whole (again, not completely a bad thing). At least I got a good ending and a happily ever after for our heroes.
Definitely a more complex feeling towards the story this time around, but at least it's more clean cut on the characters. Speaking of which:
In shows like these, I would prioritize trying to go over each character and talk about them. However, since the development's pretty skewy
(and because I'm WAY too lazy), I'm only going to go over the 3 leads, and then proceed to talk about some select Demon Lords that I found more appealing than the others. Simple as that.
I do want to say that I wanted more of a this:
No, seriously, where was a this:
Really, can I find somewhere else aside from the actual Nanatsu no Taizai that has a this:
Oops, my Parched Hoe self is showing. Give me a sec.
There we go! All better! Let's move on before I go completely into the gutter.
I'm going to start things off with Lucifer:
Lucifer is the self-proclaimed Demon Lord of Pride, and was formerly the leader of the Archangels of Heaven and the Seven Lively Virtues before being evicted out of Heaven. Despite being a lady of beauty, she is incredibly arrogant, only looking out for herself and what will be the best for her in the end. However, this pride may be her greatest weapon against the other Demon Lords she is trying to take down, along with her hold on Maria's heart. Now, if only these Garbs wouldn't be such a pain in the ass.
As a lead character, I did end up liking Lucifer a fair bit. In terms of her development, her arrogance doesn't go away, but she does eventually show she cares for Maria and Levi and sees them as allies and companions rather than extra meat. She doesn't give up when it could be her defeat on her line, which includes withstanding sexual torture, and at least she isn't hot-headed enough to lose focus on what's important to her: ascend to her throne as as rightful Demon Lord, and lead over the Seven Mortal Sins once she defeats them one by one. Plus, I don't think her main shtick is to have that va va voom voom, which is greatly appreciated.
While her character may not be the best, seeing as this is a fanservice anime, she still had her moments of being a badass and a smartass at the same time. Her battles are short, but she either knows the right things to say or the right attacks to use, and she knows more about idols than any anime angel probably ever could. Now let's hope we share the same favorite group!
Too soon? Yeah, probably.
Next up is Levi:
Levi (or Leviathan, depending on what you prefer) is the aspiring Demon Lord of Envy who isn't a part of the Seven Mortal Sins, but yet wants to be. After freeing Lucifer from the cross she was shipped with, Levi is a prime figure at the fallen angel's side, calling her Onee-sama (which means Big Sister) and going along with whatever she has planned. Whenever Lucifer's attentions shift elsewhere, she becomes incredibly jealous, and upon first meeting Maria, it gets so bad that she has to rely on sexual torture to get Maria to nearly break.
Levi has the power to control water and summon water-based familiars to her side for aid in a fight, but she isn't as strong enough compared to the other Demon Lords. She also has a stuffed bat familiar named Behemoth who constantly stays by her side, and lends his hand a few times to get our heroes out of a pinch.
Unfortunately, I wasn't able to like Levi. The writers didn't really know what to do with her, and as such, she barely gets any character development or any real depth outside of her desire to get with Lucifer. There's also the fact that half her lines are basically calling out to Lucifer, which gets exceedingly annoying in the Japanese since it's all "Onee-sama!'s" and nothing else. Another broken record, I'm afraid.
The good news is that she is more tolerable dub-wise, as the adaptive script writer (Clint Bickham) removes all references to Big Sis Lucifer, and rather just keeps it straightly the aforementioned demon's name, or has Levi give her a nickname. It works better and isn't as grating, though the fact that it takes her 10 episodes to admit that she'll miss Maria if she's gone rubbed me the wrong way, considering we didn't get any build-up on it beforehand aside from that episode.
To all of these love-struck characters who don't really do anything aside from admit their feelings or jump at their beloved time and time again, go home. Seriously, your game is tired and you all should retire.
I don't even like that song, but hey! The reference worked!
Let's move on to Maria:
I wish I could find something other than her character design, but there's barely any screenshots of this show. It's honestly rather strange, but moving on.
Maria used to have a pretty normal life, going to a religion-based school for most of her life and praying to God every day. However, after she is swept up into the revenge seeking Lucifer's plots, her life will never be the same again. Naive and shy, Maria is at first flabbergasted that Lucifer needs a human girl to be by her side, but she does eventually grow to care for the newly made devil. Which I guess works, even though Lucifer literally took her against her will.
In the end, I was on the fence with Maria. Initially, she reminded me of Ritsuka Tachibana from Dance with Devils, a series that start off fine enough before sinking its own ship once the second half started. Both of them are girls who may not be the brightest in the bunch of female protagonists, but at least they know when things are fishy and try to speak up about it. But whereas Ritsuka became progressively dumber as her series went on, Maria starts to get smarter. Granted, she does get captured by Belial in Episode 7 and isn't really of much use otherwise (aside from being used as a location magnet or bait), but I do think her faith in Lucifer is justified. After seeing her dedication in defeating the other Demon Lords and following through on that, Maria doesn't really have anywhere else to look but in awe at Lucifer because let's be real, she can't go back to the way things were before.
She even has to stand against Lucifer in the RPG because of how Belphegor pits them against each other, with Maria as the hero and Lucifer as the villain. Even so, she tries to get Lucifer to surrender easily without destroying the bond that has built up between them, which is the best thing to do. I just wish the development regarding on why Lucifer picked Maria to was much more satisfying, because Maria praying to Lucifer since she was young, with Lucifer picking up on that sole devotion and it being the reason why she rebelled again God in the first place?
Yeah, I don't buy it. It's basically a cop-out. But at least Maria doesn't do stupid s**t by the end and follows her heart, her intuition.
Now for Belial:
Belial is the Demon Lord of Vanity, as well as the leader of the Seven Mortal Sins. She leads the charge against Lucifer because she was an angel once as well. Known as Satanael, she gained followers by appearing to humans, thereby proving God's existence. However, this backfired, as these humans eventually fell to the seven sins. Because her approach ended up failing so massively, she was sentenced by Lucifer to fall into Hell. While in the fiery depths, Belial gathered up enough strength by posing as someone from the legendary Byrndale family, and getting the other Sins to work with her so that she could one day get revenge.
However, it may be easier for her in her position to get help in bringing a new world order and regaining her angel wings from someone else. And that someone could very well be from the other side. Let's just say that this devil's days in Heaven could be returning again very soon.
Overall, I liked Belial enough. Despite her being pretty dimwitted on some occasions, she was easily able to play the Seven Mortal Sins into obeying her due to her newly acquired family name and powers. She has them on a pretty tight leash, and because they can't disobey her unless she specifically states she is no longer the leader, that makes abandoning her side much more difficult. She even eventually gets the upper hand on Lucifer, and she becomes pretty crafty in doing it.
Once Maria piques her interest, not only does she eventually find her heart (nothing like good old fashioned boob rubbing), but she also kidnaps the girl as leverage. She even tries to make Lucifer become drained of her power so that she won't hold a candle to her as she descends into the circles of Hell. At the end of the day, it isn't really enough, but at least there's dedication in doing it.
Asmodeus's turn to strut her stuff:
Meet the Demon Lord of Lust, everyone! Asmodeus is clearly the most lewd out of the bunch, and aside from her main getup and designated sin, it even transfers into how she fights against Lucifer after the latter uses Maria as bait to distract the demon lord. Aside from being entirely confident in her sexual prowess, Asmodeus also loves to tease and knows several hot spots to push a girl's (and possibly a man's) buttons. Her main base of operations is in Miami (welcome to Miami. Bienvenidos a Miami), where she lounges around at the beach by day, and can be found in the club, bottle full of bub (not literally), doing her best Britney Spears Blackout era pole dancing by night in order to gather more followers.
Asmodeus's defeat comes when she realizes that lust isn't something that has to be acquired; it is in fact completely natural, according to Lucifer tied up in a plant tentacle thing. She then realizes that Lucifer is actually quite pretty, and doesn't just need a taste of the fallen angel in order to get a kick out of her. She is the first one fought and the first Garb from Lucifer's body removed. Her powers are wind-based.
Honestly, I freaking loved Asmodeus based on personality alone. You can tell the Japanese and English writers just had a ton of fun with her, because all of her lines are either basic yaoi seme ones (and yes, I kept track of them) or are so over-the-top ridiculous that they're funny either way. I mean, her main attack's called Pheromone Wind of all things! It's absolutely genius! She just takes what she was blessed with and rolls with it. Even when I wasn't enjoying this series, just seeing her alone brightened an episode. She also reminded me of another character (who yes, is from a better show, and yes, actually has more development built on) that isn't afraid of their sensuality and just rolls with it. Of course, much to the delight of me.
And that, my friends, is freaking Christophe Giacometti from Yuri on Ice.
I would put a picture of him here, but I'm going to be putting GIF's and screenshots in the next few paragraphs anyways. Plus, I think mostly everyone is aware of every single character in Yuri on Ice (along with the entire show. After all, it was born to make history), so let's not waste time and just start the reasoning.
1. Both Chris and Asmodeus flirt with the main characters of their respective anime. How do they do this? By coming on in the most suggestive way possible. Granted, we see Asmodeus before hand asking if Lucifer can give her a taste when she first steps into Pandemonium, but she puts it out there much more bluntly when Lucifer is immobile after the first round of attacks from the Seven Mortal Sins. How? By poking her right boob.
Chris just does this...well, because he's Chris. It's basically his actual unexpected entrance into the anime and he gives no f**ks. He also strokes Yuri's ass, because the lewd is strong with these two.
2. They have the tendency to feel up very private places. With Asmodeus, she'll occasionally grope her right boob (what is it with her and right boobs?). With Chris, his first performance piece has a move where he swipes both of his hands across his butt. Why? Again, the two of them are lewd creatures.
3. It seems like the two of them always walk around in Arousal City. For Asmodeus, hearing someone moan from her actions on them turns her on, as well as thinking about angels, and literally anything else beyond that (she claims that Satan attacking Michael in the final episode of this show made her wet). Chris just flaunts around his sexuality and orgasms during both of his ice skating pieces the first time through.
Why? Yet again, these two are lewd and precious and HOW COME I LIKE THEM SO MUCH? SERIOUSLY? THEY'RE DIRTY BUT AWESOME AT THE SAME TIME!
Nothing else to say here. Goodbye while I find myself some fanfic (and an actual fan) to satisfy this nice pink burn on my face from too many feelings.
Last but not least for my highlights is Astaroth:
Astaroth is the Demon Lord of Melancholy who is rarely seen in Hell due to her work as an idol to maintain followers. She is very self-depreciating and shy, even though her presence makes her out to be larger than life. Since she can't properly communicate with people, she uses her music to display her emotions to the world. She's at her best state with her guitar in hand, rocking out and producing some pretty sick tunes. Oh, and she can rap as well. That's also covered.
She also has an undying devotion to Belial. Aside from that fact that they're the two "outcasted" sins, maybe Belial's one of the only demon lords she feels the most comfortable around (aside from Belphegor). Though she does question her methods from time to time. She is defeated despite giving it her all in a combo of both her and Lucifer's songs. Also, she's got more confidence. After all, what's wrong with being confident, right?
Not that Astaroth's shyness is bad. In fact, it definitely made me warm to her. I can relate to the fact that she's extremely nervous around new people and she doesn't communicate in the best ways. As I've grown older, I feel like that part of me has stripped away bit by bit, but some of it is still there inside me. It's clear that's the same in Astaroth. She's adorable, quirky, and I did like how she stayed loyal to Belial despite her misdeeds until the very end, while all the others dropped out. It was a interesting thing that I wish we got more insight into, aside from the fact that in reality, Melancholy and Vanity were replaced by Envy and Pride.
Also, her seiyuu can sing and ASUDEKO will forever remain a staple in terms of anime character songs. After all, it got a dope music video directed by Yasuomi Umetsu, and it's such a thrilling rock song. But more on that later.
The other Demon Lords are Satan, the Demon Lord of Wrath, who's angry and loud and likes cute things, Belphegor, the Demon Lord of Sloth, who's lazy and doesn't like to do jack (she has my favorite design out of the girls), Mammon, the Demon Lord of Greed, who's the Designated Mom who made a lot of cat demon babies, and Beelzebub, the Demon Lord of Gluttony, who's the cute loli of the group.
We then have Michael, our other angel who isn't very nice, but has respected Lucifer for a long time, and wants to follow God's wishes. Following that are two other characters that fit the Pervy Best Friend and Pervy Older Man (who's also a demon) molds, and who are basically just throwaways. So let's just say "bye, Felicia," because I think I've got this all covered.
Oh, but I still wanted a Ban. Where is he in another world?
ANNNNNNNNNNNNND let's turn off my wish fulfillment. Water! I need water!
The animation for this series was produced by two studios, the first being Artland (known for Mushishi, Reborn, and Senran Kagura), and the second being TNK (known for Bladedance of the Elementalers, Highschool DXD, and School Days).
Overall, the animation for this series actually wasn't that bad. It mostly remained consistent, and was very colorful throughout. The staff really captured the essence of Hell and the human world in this series' terms pretty well, and even with its inconsistency in some episodes (mostly due to Artland's money issues. The fact that this series was delayed quite a few times in its broadcast run can be put on them, since they did file for bankruptcy around the time of the 2nd recap episode that only aired on AT-X (even though one of their employees said that Artland isn't going to die any time soon)), I still found it to be a nice effort.
Now time to talk about the main money maker of this series! Which, honestly, was fine. Again, I'm not easily going to be "turned on" by a show that really isn't in my wheelhouse. Also, I watched the censored stream of this, which deserves to be talked about in itself. Because do we have another iconic one on our hands!
I don't think the censoring here was as bad as other shows I've seen, but we still have those light beams that will never look flattering. Most of the boob, butt, and crotch shots are censored by a black and red or purple and red summoning circle that spins around the screen (and depending on how "bad" the shot is, will cover either 1/4th or 1/2th of the screen). It's a creative method, but I just mainly got annoyed at the censoring of the iconic erect nipples that every single girl in every single fanservice show has. Most of the time, depending on the angle of certain frames, they were never symmetrical over the nips. C'mon, I don't think it's that hard to do, right?
There's also the fact that again, there's some inconsistent censoring. Some risque shots are censored, but others go by the production staff's eyes. A few deep imprinted vaheens, a few butts, and of course, Beelzebub's punishment scene. Belial punishes Beelzebub for disobeying her by forcing the loli demon to eat sausage. Now, on its own, this scene just sounds lewd and seems to be a bit much for a mainstream fanservice show. But there's a couple of close-up and far away shots where her getting the sausage shoved into her mouth looks incredibly phallic and disturbed me. Can I not imagine that she's giving head to a group of servant demons? My mind's already rolled around in the gutter too many times to count.
Also, I think that there was too much of a "follow the book" approach as this show was starting out. Too much nipple sucking (which I've never seen before outside of fanfic), sexual torture, and nudity than was needed. Granted, I get what this show's demographic is, and what it's trying to do, but I don't really think it needed to prove itself over and over again.
With that said, it's not a bad production overall. With some more consistency, it'd probably have the best art style out of the fanservice shows I've seen.
Much like with the animation, the score was composed by two people, the first being Hiroaki Tsutsumi (known for Akashic Records of Bastard Magic Instructor, Orange, and Valkyrie Drive: Mermaid), and the second being Masaru Yokoyama (known for Freezing, Queen's Blade, and Unbreakable Machine Doll).
I was, to be blunt, wig snatched from this OST. Again, I'm not exactly sure how I can find these OSTs that just click so well with me. Much like with Qualidea Code, both Tsutsumi and Yokoyama construct pieces that fit incredibly well with the series, either through some of the Demon Lord's personalities, creating an atmosphere for the depths of Hell, or when the outcome in terms of a battle doesn't look as good as it should. Though there isn't as much experimentation (both men stick to what they're best with), this is still a fun OST with some great upbeat pieces and builds this Hell on rock and roll.
What are also fun are the insert/character songs. Aside from the Astaroth ones (which take focus in Episode 5), each Demon Lord gets her own song, and most of them are pretty good. Compared to the reverse harem/reserve harem idol shows, none of them are as distinctly unmemorable or blah. Each one gives the seiyuu room to have some fun and dabble into their character in question. They may be short (aside from Astaroth's main one), but they're still nice to listen to whether on their own or in the series (either in a montage or as background music).
Also, THEY'RE NOT CHEAPLY PRODUCED OR WRITTEN AND MOST OF THEM WERE WRITTEN BY THE LYRICIST WHO DID THE RIDDLE STORY OF DEVIL ENDINGS! More excitement for me!
My personal favorite would have to be baby now, which is Asmodeus's song, and fittingly plays during her pole dance routine. Not only is it a fun club bop that makes me want to dance, but the sexuality is clearly on display in the production, and Chiaki Takahashi is a pretty good vocalist (even though her voice for the Demon Lord of Lust doesn't work as well for me). Not only that, but with the way the song is structured, I think it may blow away any fictional idol performance for the rest of the year. Because when that bass drops, the party doesn't stop!
Other favorites include the aforementioned ASUDEKO (which is a headbanger), Binetsu na Dancin' (which despite Eri Kitamura's auto-toned AF vocals, actually makes a more "trashy" idol song fun to listen to), and Goddamn Critical (because in whatever version it's in, it's always a blast to play). The songs just work better, because not only are these, again, not produced on a low budget (despite their short lengths), but they're fun to come back to and don't want me either go to sleep or blow chunks everywhere.
Though I must say QUARTET NIGHT lit up their fire again with their recent stuff. But different series, and a different group. Let's just say that the Sin: Nanatsu no Taizai songs worked better than the last series a group of songs was in that had devils in it.
Though I will say that I'm interested in hearing some of the dubbed songs, especially since Ricco Fajardo is supposed to rap as Mage. Fajardo will easily drop the hottest mixtape of this year; mark my words.
Speaking of Fajardo, that's a prime transition into the voice acting section of this review. The Japanese is okay, though I think you'll be better off with the English dub. Performance-wise, I'm not annoyed by Maria and Levi in the dub (since Megumi Toda and Akane Fujita pitch it way too high and it's the kind of cute I don't like. And combined with the Onee-sama's from Levi, it's not a pretty combination), and the moans aren't as over-the-top and dramatic (Eri Kitamura and Yoko Hikasa at one point have moans loud enough to demolish an abandoned house). Well, not Asmodeus, but she's allowed to have bombast.
As a viewer, you may miss out on hearing more recognizable seiyuus, but I think some of the dub voice actors get more out of their characters. Sure, most of them are new to the field (which people like to bitch about, much like the people who bitch about FUNimation typecasting. I've mentioned it before, but I don't think I'm as bad as others who LURVE to always bring this up), but they add some flair to the Demon Lords. For example, some of them now have dialects, such as Mammon's European accent (I'm not exactly sure which one it is), and Belphegor's valley girl speech (like, c'mon you guys). Even Nicole Endicott, the one who starts off as probably the weakest, manages to grow more comfortable in the booth as Lucifer's journey goes on. It's a great pay-off, and one I think viewers will notice.
Also, there are no pen names, which is a definite surprise.
Finally, there's the script. Not only is it pretty funny (thank you again, Bickham), but it makes the more scandalous scenes in the series actually bearable to watch. Whether it'd be self-awareness or just really funny one-liners, it doesn't take this show seriously whatsoever, and it works incredibly well. I'm also happy that I was able to get this confirmed after a while via Twitter, because I was probably dying to know out of curiosity like so many people were.
So yeah, go watch the dub. It's censored as of right now (since it's a Broadcast Dub), but you'll still find a lot of enjoyment in it. Just be careful of uncensored streams, as they are out there because people can't wait, and it's best to watch this from the legal source if you are old enough.
Highlights in the original Japanese are Eri Kitamura, Shizuka Ito, Arisa Sakuraba, Ai Kakuma, Yui Ogura, Azusa Tadokoro, and Yumi Uchiyama.
Highlights in the English dub are Nicole Endicott, Madeleine Morris, Brittany Lauda, Elizabeth Mazwell, Dawn M. Bennett, Ella Davis, Annabel Throne, Arielle O'Neal, Morgan Garrett, Jad Saxton, Kristin Sutton, and Caitlin Glass.
So, this is definitely a mixed bag. On one hand, I got a Sin: Nanatsu no Taizai which had really good moments, some standout characters, a nice art style, a great OST, and some great talent in terms of the English dubbing pool. On the other, the story and writing were more often a miss, most of the characters don't have anything to them, the animation had dips from time to time, and the Fanservice Checklist doth appear yet again.
But in the end, I did kind of enjoy this show. Yeah, it's not great, or even remotely amazing, but I don't think it's the worst of the bunch. I have to go a bit easier on this because of its intended audience. And even though I'm nowhere in that range, I will still able to find quality in this series that other viewers missed.
I still can't recommend this series outside of its intended audience, though. Of course, you know who I mean already. But if you'd like a somewhat trashy show to watch on a rainy weekday night, this suits the bill just fine. After all, you should be welcome into this diabolic paradise, no matter how good or bad it may be to you.
Writers thought of creative ways for the battles.
Some character development, along with a few standout characters.
Great art style.
Nice English dub.
Isn't a complete steaming pile of garbage.
Story is messy in terms of its writing and tone.
Most of the characters don't have a lot to them.
Broadcast animation often dips.
Has a Fanservice Checklist.
Won't appeal to a broad audience.