Anime Gems Season 3: Maoyuu Maou Yuusha

“I’m not that smart, or good with money. I can’t work in the fields or take care of animals.
I can train someone in swordplay, but… I talked a lot about peace, but what is it, exactly?
And when peace is achieved, what will I do?
I never thought about it.”

As The Hero makes his way into the palace of the Demon King to challenge him in a final battle, he finds to his surprise that the incubent Demon King is in fact a young demon lady – with an agenda that’s very different from an alleged conquest of the human world. Instead, she proposes a pact between the Hero and the Demon King.

They secretly set up base in a small border country village and begin to gradually improve the life of the locals by introducing new farming methods and education. The teachings spread, the standard of living quickly improves for the impoverished rural population and the small country becomes more independent.

This sets in motion a series of political intrigues between the wealthy and powerful center nations, the warlords, the merchants and the church, all of which have greatly profited from the endless war between the border countries and the demons.

While it’s not exactly pacifistic, Maoyuu Maou Yuusha holds violence as a last resort, and the Demon King’s weapons of choice are diplomacy, pokerfacing and sheer wit. It’s a fascinating, smart and well constructed story that dodges anime clichés, with strong characters and great pacing.

The biggest problem of the series is that its twelve episodes aren’t even remotely enough. There are so many great ideas, subplots and little details that would deserve more screentime. It’s densely packed and captivating. Highly recommended!