Disgaea Vol. 2: A Netherworld Story – Anime DVD Review

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Did the second volume of the Disgaea anime restore my faith, or destroy it completely? That is the question…

DVD Blurb:
During his quest for Netherworld domination, Laharl is attacked by an assortment of assassins including an unlikely bounty hunter that has been following him since the beginning of his journey. Later, Laharl deals with a very energetic girl who claims to be his sister while the Prinnies lead a massive revolt and lay claim to their own country! Will Laharl have time to reclaim his throne with haphazard hooligans on his hands, or will he be swimming in a sinkhole of stupefying proportions?

Analysis:
The anime version of Disgaea once again defies common sense by creating plotlines that totally didn’t exist in the game. Sure, they have the part where Etna betrays Laharl by bringing him to Madreas, but then they end up throwing Laharl and Flonne into a board game? While I found the “kamoshirenai” episode sorta funny, the rest were painful to watch.

The prinny uprising episode didn’t even conclude with the prinnies being reborn! They just sorta lost to Laharl and ended up being his slaves again. I’m not sure why they went that route, since the whole red moon prinny thing was actually somewhat powerful in the game. Oh, and there’s also a random episode where Laharl gets a little sister. Can you say “jumped the shark?”

If this were any other anime, I’d probably stop the DVD. But this is Disgaea, so I bear it. It’s not all bad, just mostly bad. There were parts here and there where, if multiplied by 100 times, the anime could’ve turned out to be great. But instead, the plot turns stupid, the characters are under-utilized, and we end up with a mediocre game franchise anime (I mean, the anime is mediocre, not the game. The game rules!). Too bad.

The Actual DVD:
At the very least, the DVD extras are pretty good. We get the typical creditless ED (wait, it didn’t come with the first disc?), as well as a continuation of the Disgaea talk between Laharl’s Japanese VC and the game designer for Disgaea. There’s also the Disgaea trailer that was released on DVD in Japan, dubbed in English. It’s kind of sad seeing the trailer, since the animation quality in it is like 100 times better than the actual anime. Oh, and there’s a short CM for the music video of the OP.

The cover is once again reversible, this time with a super sweet picture of Flonne on the back. I switched it ASAP. The case includes a color insert with a pinup of Etna… This almost makes paying for the DVD worth it. If I had paid for it.

Conclusion:
As much as it pains me to realize this (I’m a total Nippon Ichi fanboy), Disgaea just isn’t that good. It’s downright bad. But it’s Disgaea! I shouldn’t forgive this anime, but how can I badmouth Flonne and Etna!? The special features do add some value to the DVD, but overall, unless you’re a Nippon Ichi completest, I’d say to stay away from this anime. Volume 3 might not be good either, but at least it’ll bring me some closure, dood.

Many thanks to Geneon for sending me a review copy of Disgaea Volume 2!

67 thoughts on “Disgaea Vol. 2: A Netherworld Story – Anime DVD Review”

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