Original Story: Yu Shimizu
Art: Asuka Keigen
Character Design: Asagi Tohsaka
Translation: Roman Lampert
Lettering: Arbash Mughal
What They Say:
After a lively party welcoming Leonis into the eighteenth platoon, he and Riselia visit a nearby orphanage. The kids there are overjoyed to play with their big sister and new big brother … but the fun doesn’t last long, A sudden Stampede of Voids stops them in their tracks, and what’s more, Riselia is abducted! Now it’s up to the reincarnated Demon Lord to take back his minion – and perhaps face off against some familiar faces from his past …
Content (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
With all assembled in the shared common area of their dormitory, the girls of the Eighteenth Squadron happily gathered as they celebrated twin events for their group, the joining of Leonis to their crew and Riselia finally unlocking her holy sword, but as the awkward duo shyly thanked these friends, the former Demon Lord was surprised by the amount of food prepared by an enthusiastic maid, with Regina confessing she did it all on Lady Selia’s order, since she was certain he would join their squad. As praise is heaped upon the detached boy for his skill during the trial, Leo brushes off all such compliments by stating his aid was nothing special since he has a support-type weapon, with the credit rightfully belonging to his partner, with the young girl embarrassed by this bold acknowledgment even as her teammates question how she earned her weapon after such a long time. However, as this reserved child quietly pondered if the sword’s release might have anything to do with her awakening as a vampire, this presumptuous judgment is quickly thought of as a matter of coincidence, the festivities quickly winding down as their friends attempt to come up with outrageous names for her new sword, closing under the bold agreement Leonis would stay in Riselia’s room since she has appointed herself as his guardian and thus her responsibility.
Yet as morning comes and Leo wakes to find himself in unfamiliar surroundings, it is only then does he realize sometime during the night someone moved him from his place on the sofa into the bed, with a shocking stirring beside him communicating who the culprit might be, Riselia’s half-naked body exposing herself with each movement, only then allowing the former Demon Lord to piece together what had happened, with his promising vampire queen confessing she sucked his blood due to unquenchable nocturnal habits. After pronouncing they will no longer sleep in the same place, Magnus decides he will spend the day researching this world’s history, only to be interrupted by Crystalia as she suggests they instead go the training grounds to begin their curriculum, since every holy sword differs in powers, there is no strict guideline as to how gain experience in using individual weapons with each student freely allowed to instruct themselves, his roommate reminding her master he did promise to train her. After reluctantly agreeing, both head to the arena where the past Undead King summons increasingly difficult waves of skeleton minions, and while he watches with admiration as his noteworthy partner easily dispatches everyone without utilizing her vast reserves of mana, what is more impressive is the talented display of sword skills she uses to defeat each foe, leaving the girl uninjured but exhausted. While Selia thanks Leonis for a frantic practice session, it is then when the boy feels his duties are over, thus allowing for a retreat into learning from piles of dusty books, but as his annoying stomach grumbles with discontentment, this energetic girl proposes they go run an errand in the commercial district, with the further enticement there would be a meal if he came along, leaving Leo little choice in the forced matter. After a brief trip on the shared motorcycle, they soon arrive at a large restaurant which also serves as an orphanage for refugee children, but as a determined girl hefts the heavy crate of supplies to the front door, Magnus was surprised as a group of happy kids begin to surround Riselia and grab onto her clothes, as they all warmly greeted her with the appropriate name of Big Sis Selia.
As readers of the light novel continue to enjoy this enthusiastic adaptation, one still cannot overlook mangaka Keigen-sensei’s overt tendency to lean a once charming story into one of an ecchi nature, even if writer Shimizu-sensei’s original story does not shy away from lewd jokes, they made more perverted due to the exaggerated curves of these fifteen-year-old girls within tight fitting costumes, not hesitating to shock the audience or Leonis with their risqué attempts of embarrassment, with what were once racy descriptions now becoming visually arousing due to these pronounced depictions. Each chapter does not shy away from exposing us to new sexually charged distractions, from pushing plump chests forward and sandwiching the poor boy between them, a half-naked Riselia coming out of the shower or a supposedly innocent child trying to flip up an already short skirt in order to see what lies beneath, causing the reader to become almost numb to these teasing temptations, until we remember all these girls are still teenagers against a ten-year-old child.
When we finally are exposed to dynamic fights whether they be a training montage or against the Voids, Keigen-sensei’s artwork does reveal itself to be an exciting collection of black and white displays, yet still littered with teasing views of panties or long extended legs clothed in stockings and exposed garter belts, and while the excitement of these action scenes is entertaining, the main focus is still to show off as much tempting skin whenever possible, breaking away from the growing relationship between Leo and his new vampire queen, or the amazing synchronicity between members of the Eighteenth Squadron, elegantly cooperating to defeat ominous foes. However, it is within these frenetic battles where a lack of a smooth transition between panels works against what is portrayed, with the intense images seeming to skip around without any explanation as to what is happening, only making sense once the audience takes a second look at the full event, finally able to fill in the blanks within what may be a haphazard construction of
Demon Sword Master of Excalibur Academy may attempt to continue the intriguing notion of a lost Leonis learning more about his current situation, yet a lack of focus due to the constant need to expose this ten-year-old to overt displays of buxom teammates causes the audience to constantly lose interest as interesting moments are finally revealed, even if they are meant to be a comedic interjection for what could be an overly serious story. However, as the histories of the Eighteenth Squadron come to light and we watch as master and vampire queen become closer due to their growing respect for the other, there is still a chance the underlying story can be rescued from this clichéd narrative, with each girl trying to find a way to get closer to their sole male member, and become an ally within this growing harem of underage girls. But as this former Undead King learns that corrupted relics of a thousand years ago are now exposing themselves to a world that has lost its knowledge of the past, the underlying story is becoming interesting once again, even if any significant advances may soon be lost within the relentless temptation of jiggling teenage flesh.
Content Grade: A
Art Grade: A
Packaging Grade: A
Text/Translation Grade: A-
Age Rating: Older Teen
Released By: Yen Press
Release Date: April 18, 2023