Nothing much happens during this episode that is relevant to the plot. We get perhaps a slight hint as to the back story of Enpi-chan. Yuki and Enpi were childhood friends, but we still don’t know her motivations and her relation to Enma-kun. By the way, all this happens at the very end. That’s right, an entire episode of crazy shenanigans just flew by of no particular relevance. I guess now’s the time to post screenshots and try to come up with
witty shitty one liners to accompany them.
The demon of the week is the fat kid from Stand By Me. In the name of Love and Peace, he turns people into fatties so instead of fighting each other, they simply bounce about. The crew comes up with the brilliant idea of using Yuki-hime (first time in bloomers) to lure out the demon. The plan backfires and suddenly Enma, Yuki, and Harumi find themselves bouncing about the world.
Personally, I enjoyed this entire sequence of insanity, if only for that “blast from the past” feel. Enma-kun is a very 70’s show, and when the trio is bouncing across the world, we see many scenes reminiscent of those times. To name a few, they come across the Tower of Sun from Expo ’70, the early Shinkansen, references to the Apollo 13 mission, they even come across a certain “conflict” from that time. Of course, the running gag throughout is that Harumi is seen eating various types of food from the places they visit.
I think I finally understand how this show operates. The over-arching plot, if there even is one, moves slower than a crippled snail. Each episode is themed around a different demon antagonist. That is, however, not the inherent struggle. Often times, Enma-kun and company will spend half an episode incompetently running around acomplishing nothing, only to pull a deus ex machina (a la G-Tool) at the end. The status quo is then reset for the next episode where the formula repeats; perhaps, if we’re lucky, we get a tiny revelation as to where the overarching plot is headed. This type of storytelling is very divisive, but nonetheless, it fits the premise of the show as it is basically a show about the characters. Assuming that this is a one-quarter series, the show is just about half over. As of this point, we still haven’t reached the black skull arc, nor do I think we will until the very end.
I would venture a guess that the lack of plot is a turn-off for most, but nevertheless, I still enjoy the show. Despite all its faults, Enma-kun at its heart is a bildungsroman. An epic, if you will, of which Meeramera is only the first part. Something you don’t see a lot in anime these days, save for a few titles. That said, Enma-kun, in my opinion, would have been better as a 4-part OVA like Demon Prince Enma. If Brain’s Base decides to animate Enma Kerberos, I really hope they return to said method.