The World God Only Knows Episode #01 Anime Review

Based on the manga series Kami nomi zo Shiru Sekai by Tamiki Wakaki, The World God Only Knows has had ten volumes come out since it started in 2008 which is a pretty good count compared to some other series. Being a weekly serial in Weekly Shonen Sunday, it's managed to build up a decent fanbase over that time as it follows the life of Keima Katsuraga, a seventeen year old high school student who is mainly interested in just girls, though they tend to be just of the digital game variety as opposed to the real world. In fact, it's amusing that he has little real interest in the real thing, though not a surprise considering other shows that have run down this road before.Keima's reputation is pretty solid in the gaming community world as he's known as the God of Conquest from his own site due to the way he so masterfully wins so many games. Everything changes for him though with the sudden arrival of Elucia, aka Elci, who has literally dropped out of the sky as Keima apparently signed a contract to help her find "Loose Souls." Though she seemed to have come from above, she's actually from Hell and Keima signed a contract via email without realizing it and is now caught up in this deal where he has to help Elci collect these souls that are in people's hearts. Because of his association and contract with Elci now, through the bureau chief Dokuro, he's able to get a view of the wispy loose souls when he looks at people. And as much as he'd like to just get past the whole thing, he's got a new collar around his neck that may cut off his head if he doesn't do the job right.The method of helping these loose souls isn't entirely clear, though Elci tells him that all he has to do with the first one she's found, a track runner named Ayumi, is to kiss her. For a guy whose completely conquered women in the virtual world, he's done less than nothing in the real world. With the threat of his own head being cut off, Elci also informs him that if he fails, she could end up the same way with her head being cut off. The fun of the show comes from two essentially clueless people trying to save the others through means that simply go against their natures. For Keima, it's even worse as he looks at real girls and sees that they aren't living up to what he believes they should be like from the idealized game versions. Thankfully, Elci is able to make adjustments to reality (for better or worse) to try and nudge Keima into doing his job.The visual design for this series is decent as it plays with a fairly typical high school setting that's real world taken up a notch or two with the character designs. They're the softer and rounder types as opposed to a full reality based show and that colorful and vibrant nature that's mixed with it allows it to look good while touching upon the nature of its going beyond reality. The characters in general look good with above the basic uniform designs and the like and the backgrounds are definitely well done, causing this to look like one that's straddling the line of what kind of world it wants to present. It's going for that real world approach while bringing in the fantastical elements that aren't taken to the extreme. It's a pretty good approach overall.

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