Reviews: Highschool DXD
Fanservice: The series
Disclaimer: This is for the three anime seasons of Highschool Dx D already out at the writing of this review. I also haven't read the light novels (yet?), so I am looking at the anime on its own merits, for better or worse. I am not going to bore you with descriptions (you can read the main page yourself), so let's jump right into the middle: This series is entirely fueled by blatant and unashamed Fanservice... which is not a bad thing by itself. In fact the way the camera keeps casually focusing on the girls' naughty bits and the story taking every opportunity possible to have naked assets swinging around somehow warps the entire concept to the point where what should have been creepy and annoying instead becomes strangely endearing. However this only applies to the slice of life and comedy scenes. There, after a while, the naked girls and nipple-shots and various flavors of consensual groping becomes part of the scenery and the reader can easily enter a sort of Zen state about it. Using the same kind of fanservice logic in actual life-or-death situations on the other hand, such as the countless deadly shounen battles that erupt during the series, is just Mood Whiplash inducing to the point of nearly ruining most of the action climaxes of the series. That said, there is still a lot to recommend. The heroines are interesting and the lack of overt jealousy (or over-the-top violent tsunderes, if we are at that) is a welcome breath of fresh air in the onslaught of Harem Genre series produced in recent memory. The action is also really good (if sometimes undermined by the forced inclusion of some fanservice/comedy, which tends to kill the mood of the scenes), with the protagonist being a Hot-Blooded Determinator or par with Kurou Daijuuji, with a similar penchant for spontaneous powerups as well. Overall it is a series that gets better with each arc, has a lot of likable characters, over-the-top battles and some cute harem romance with a Harem Seeker male lead and girls who just don't mind it. The fanservice, as weirdly Zen as it can become after a while, is still prominent to the point of getting the the way of the actual storytelling, but if one can overlook that (or finds it fun even), this can be a very entertaining series.