How Not To Summon a Demon Lord: Season 1 – Recap/ Review (with Spoilers)

Alternative title card for How Not To Summon a Demon Lord.

How Not To Summon a Demon Lord is such a frustrating show. For it seems to know what it would need to be better than what’s delivered, but is too lazy to be consistent. Network Crunchyroll Creator Yukiya Murasaki Noted Cast Sakamoto/Diablo Masaaki Mizunaka Shera Yū Serizawa Rem Azumi Waki Sylvie Ookubo Rumi Edelgard Katou…

How Not To Summon a Demon Lord is such a frustrating show. For it seems to know what it would need to be better than what’s delivered, but is too lazy to be consistent.

Creator Yukiya Murasaki
Noted Cast
Sakamoto/Diablo Masaaki Mizunaka
Shera Yū Serizawa
Rem Azumi Waki
Sylvie Ookubo Rumi
Edelgard Katou Emiri
Lord Galford Ootsuka Akio
Alicia Hara Yumi
Keera Ishida Akira
Krebskulm (aka Klem) Tanezaki Atsumi

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Similar to Re:Zero, for an unexplained reason, which is never followed up on, a young man finds himself sucked into another world of which he doesn’t seek a way out. However, unlike Re:Zero, Sakamoto isn’t powerless in this world of Cross Reverie. He, in fact, is one of the most powerful beings at level 150. Something very few humans, and demi-humans, reach because usually they’d die by the time they get anywhere near that.

Also, unlike Subaru, Sakamoto, henceforth referred to as Diablo, finds himself with two young women by his side. You see, Diablo, not Sakamoto, was summoned by Rem and Shera to be their slave. Problem is, Diablo has a ring which reverses all spells so they become his slaves which crafts the storyline for the first half of the show. For with Shera being an elf princess, her being enslaved is a huge problem for human and elf relations. However, the lord of Faltra, Lord Galford, sees to that situation.

As for Rem? Well, her issue leads the second half of the season for inside her being, perhaps her womb, is a demon lord. But, unlike Diablo, a self-proclaimed demon lord, Krebskulm is a well-known conqueror. One that Diablo vows to destroy to free Rem of its curse, for otherwise, she would have to live in fear of both humanity and the Fallen who seek to kill or revive Krebskulm.


The Action Scenes

A stand off between Lord Galford and Diablo.

Though there are quite a few squash matches, lopsided in Diablo’s favor, some matchups are eye-opening. Take like his fight with Lord Galford or with Keera’s Hydra. In those, alongside the battle with Edelgard, it leads you to believe we could have a serious action anime here. One in which Diablo and his crew travel the world learning about the Fallen, humanity being oppressors, while they figure out how to break the spell of the slave collars. On top of figure out how to save Rem from the birth of Krebskulm/

Low Points

The Massive Amounts of Ecchi/Soft Core Hentai

However, the show makes it clear it isn’t just about fighting – when it comes to action. Throughout the show, we get a lot of ecchi, borderline soft-core hentai. Anything from boob grabbing to a drunken Diablo assaulting Sylvie or fingering Rem.

We Never Leave Faltra

To follow that up, all of this pretty much happens in Faltra. Despite how dangerous Diablo is, the beef he has with Lord Galford after their fight, even with what goes on with Frebskulm, aka Klem, they never leave Faltra.

The Culture of The World Isn’t Dug Too Deep Into

Edelgard approaching the Bridge of Ulug

Which becomes highly frustrating for we get sprinkles of information. For example, with meeting Edelgard and her fallen army, who look similar to the demi-humans in Faltra, so comes the question of what leads one to be a fallen? Add in the hierarchy of the world, plus what we learn from Alicia, then you wish to see the capital and see what the humans in charge are like.

This only gets worse as we learn the truth about Lord Galford, witness what Keera is willing to do to get Shera back home, and no matter what happens, everyone returns to the same inn within Faltra. Thus making this show feel so contained it is stifling.

The Whole Slave Collar or Sakamoto Being Trapped In A Video Game Thing? Backburner/ Forgotten

You’d think with being summoned into a video game, often encountering highly uncomfortable situations, and knowing you could die permanently, no revives, Sakamoto wouldn’t want to stay in Cross Reverie. He’d look into reversing the summoning spell as well as undoing the slave collar thing which is attached to that spell. Yet, this is pretty much put on the back burner. In fact, by the end, Rem and Shera are cool with the collars and it seems Sakamoto, who still is aware Cross Reverie isn’t his home or the real world, has settled in like he’s been there for generations.

Krebskulm Disappoints Honestly

Krebskulm being revealed and not matching how often spoken about.
“That’s Krebskulm?!”

The idea of this strangely big breasted monstrosity lingered for most of the season. Then, when born, it is this petite thing with a cookie fixation. Oh, and not too long after it is born, it joins in the ecchi which becomes so creepy for even with not knowing its age, it rubbing up against Diablo naked is so uncomfortable.

But then Klem gets triggered and becomes the destroyer of mortals! Which would have been cool if it didn’t happen at the end of the show and she didn’t destroy much besides a church. Just another example in a long line of disappointments.

On The Fence

It Attempts To Have Heart

With Rem and Shera being young girls, having someone like Diablo defend and accept them means the world to them. Hence leading to many ecchi moments since, perhaps in their world, that is what’s expected. You meet a nice man like Diablo and you give him all your love.

But, the moments which make it seem, again, that this show could have done more is when we see Rem cry from Diablo accepting her, despite the curse of Klem. Shera learning that Diablo would never let anything happen to her. Alongside seeing Sakamoto deal with his abandonment issues and take his past to try to keep Alicia alive to see a better future. Again, like with the action, you see this show could have been more than innuendo, grinding, ecchi, and softcore hentai but, for some reason, it refused to.

Overall: Mixed (Stick Around)

Eulerex turning his head in confusion.

How Not To Summon a Demon Lord is the kind of show which strings you along. Just when you think you’ve had enough, it took something too far, or has lost its luster, it has a heartfelt moment or fight which brings you right back. Hence the mixed label. There was potential for this show from the start but it never decided to consistently show how good it could be. Yet, despite the frustration, when it was good it was good and it leads your own imagination to how it could have been better.

So if deciding to watch this, realize it leans heavy toward ecchi, can be a bit ridiculous, but gives you just enough breadcrumbs to calm your grumbling. If just for a little bit.

Has Another Season Been Confirmed?: Nope

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  1. I ended up really enjoying How Not To Summon a Demon Lord. It definitely has some rough edges and the fan service at times did get uncomfortable, but it did manage to give me a reason every episode to want to come back and watch more. And I mostly had fun watching it. While not something I will jump up and down and sing the praises of, on balance there was more that was done right with this than missed the mark, and it remained entertaining. Though, definitely needs a fan service warning because it is pretty full on.

    1. Yeah, this show definitely needs an NSFW label. Though I don’t think Crunchyroll provides that. Which is kind of strange when I think about it.

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