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Category:    Home > Reviews > Anime > Animation > Comedy > Magic Girls > Japanese TV > Animals > Adventure > Drama > Korea > Demon Girl Next Door (2019/aka Machikado Mazoku*)/A Dog's Courage (2018/Well Go Blu-ray)/Z/X Code Reunion (2019/*both Sentai Complete Collection Blu-ray Sets)

Demon Girl Next Door (2019/aka Machikado Mazoku*)/A Dog's Courage (2018/Well Go Blu-ray)/Z/X Code Reunion (2019/*both Sentai Complete Collection Blu-ray Sets)

Picture: A-/B+/A- Sound: C+/B+/C+ Extras: C/D/C Main Programs: A-/A-/B+

Now for more Asian animation from our in-house expert...

Yuko, a.k.a. Shamiko, discovers she has grown horns and a tail and her family are actually demons, and they have been fighting magical girls since the dawn of time, but for the last several centuries they have been losing and powers sealed away and because they have been losing, they are cursed to be poor. Now, Yuko has to find and defeat Magical Girls to redeem their honor and improve their family budget and go to the all-you-can-eat pancake restaurant. And just so happens Yuko's classmate Momo turns out to be a magical girl, but she is so nice and she keeps on saving Shamiko and helping her out in all sorts of ways. Shamiko ends up feeling conflicted, the girl she is supposed to defeat keeps on saving and she rather be friends with her in The Demon Girl Next Door: Complete Collection (2019).

After discovering she is a demon girl and must fight magical girls, Shamiko's first encounter with Magical Girl Momo is that she is rescued by her and indebted to her. To make things worse, she not only blew her cover, but she is ridiculously weak compared to Momo, but Momo not only knows and doesn't mind, but decides to help train her and to become a respectable demon girl. As Shamiko learns more on how to be a demon girl, can she resist becoming friends with Momo who is nothing but nice and sweet to her? Damned if she does, damned if she doesn't Shamiko is like the cute little girl next door than a demon.

This anime was just pure comedy and cuteness, cute little demon girl and magical girl trying to get along even though they should be natural enemies. Extras include clean opening and closing animations and trailers.

Episodes include:

Yuko Awakens! For Family Reasons You're Now a Demon Girl - Yuko discovers she is a demon, Shamiko and the first thing is she gets saved by her arch nemesis Magical Girl Momo.

Just How Sporty Are You?! Everything is Fluctuating - Shamiko realizes how weak she is but she still challenges Momo, but is Momo here to train her or to put her through workout hell?

Nightmare of Forebear?! The Doorstep of Darkness Descends - Shamiko is contacted by the spirit of her ancestor Lilith and she needs to improve domestic home skills.

Sharpen Your Mind! The Newly Awakened Power of the Magical Girl - Lilith manages to possess Shamiko's body. In order to pay Momo back, Shamiko takes a part time job.

A Town Full of Traps? The Demon on the Brink Awakens a New Ability - Shamiko wants to buy her little sister a present, but going out shopping she asks Momo to pretend to be friends with her. Shamiko transforms for the first time.

Courage to Face the Future! The Heavy Roller Won't Stop - Momo and her Lilith sneak into Momo's dream. Momo get sick and Shamiko calls a truce to take care of her.

The Pink Method! The Wheel of Fate is a Round Tire - Momo continues Shamiko's training to help get her stronger. Shamiko takes a part time job as a mascot and meets another Magical Girl Mikan.

The Curse Fruit! Beware of the Sour Mikan! - Shamiko meets and befriends Magical Girl Mikan, however she has an odd side effect, whenever she gets excited those close to her gets bad luck.

Final Exams! Today I'm One of Those Brainy Demons - Momo and Shamiko compete in school to who can get better grades. Lilith says demons are allowed to cheat, but Shamiko wants to fight her fair and square. Shamiko and Mikan go the movie theater to help 'train' to control their fears.

The Ancestor Evolves! A Pair of Glasses Reflect Within a Dark Lab - Shamiko's classmate wants some questionable 'experiments' that she wants to try out with Shamiko and Lilith.

Diving into Dreams Once Again! Breaking Through the Pink Defense Line - Shamiko learns her father was sealed away when Momo's big sister disappeared.

and Feelings to Convey! A New Leap Forward for Demonkind! - Shamiko proposes a plan to work together with Momo to find her sister and free her father and create a city where Demons and Magical Girls can live together.

Jacob was an ordinary dog until one day, his owners just abandoned him in the middle of nowhere. Lonely and afraid, Jacob joins a group of strays, but even then, life is not easy and Jacob has a lot to learn if he wants to survive. After meeting another group of strays outside of town they decide to journey together and find paradise, a place where they can live in peace and without fear in Chun-Baek Lee's A Dog's Courage (2018).

Jacob was considered merely a common household pet until he grew too big and his owners had to get rid of him. He was abandoned and then picked up by a group of strays like him. As they live in an abandoned house, they must scrounge for scraps and food. Jacob then meets another group of dogs who live in the mountains outside of town and instead of eating scraps and trash they hunt for food, but all their lives become threaten when a merciless dog hunter starts hunting all of them for his dog mill. Forced to run for their lives the two packs work to find a safe home beyond the town and mountains, with only their noses and instinct as their guide.

Watching this film will make you want to call Animal Cruelty and support stronger laws against cruelty to animals, not all the dogs make it in the end. It shows a bit of insight to what animal cruelty is like in other countries like Korea, animals that grow too big, too old or too expensive to care for are thrown away like garbage or even worser fates. Extras include trailers.

Finally, when the inter-dimensional gate opened years ago, it united the 5 realms on Earth, bring the Z/X and their inter dimensional war with them. Now, the only way for humans to survive is to form pacts with the Z/X. Azumi dying of an incurable disease unites with the powerful Z/X known as Rigel to prolong her life. But now, she has to train with the other girls and teams at the Fujimisaki Academy. Will they ever become strong enough to become heroes to save the world?

In Z/X Code Reunion Complete Collection (2019), Azumi is a dying girl, forms a pack with Z/X Rigel to help prolong her life, in turn she is Rigel's source of energy. They fight an unknown enemy known only as Inerma, which threatens to destroy all the dimension. Unfortunately, Azumi and Rigel are with the lowest ranking team at the Academy, can they prove to their Senpai/upperclassmen(women) that they aren't a bunch of flukes and hopeless?

This series is less about the plot and battles and more about cute magical girls and their relationships with each other. The characters train with each other and they become friends, and in the end it's that 'friendship' (their source of their power) that saves the world. Extras include clean opening and closing animation and trailers

Episodes include:

Blossom Adorned Campus - Azumi and Rigel arrive at the Academy, but no sooner than they arrive they school is under attack.

Drive Shaft Ignition! - Azumi and Rigel meet their teammates while in combat and manage to defeat the enemy.

Branded E - Azumi and her friends are listed as the lowest rank and powered girls at the academy and get 'special' training.

The Guardian and the Guarded - Azumi trains with Rigel, can she prove to her and the team she is not just dead weight?

Overboost - Matoi manages her overboost mode, but can she overcome her fears and control her powers?

Slacker Z/X - Yuni tired of all the training and runs away, but ends up finding her overdrive after being chased by a bear.

Vow to the Blue Skies - E team fights A team in a mock battle, but suddenly the enemy attacks. Azumi and Rigel combine to form their overboost to defeat the enemy.

Summer Vacation! - It's summer break, and the girls go to Yuni's summer house, but is Ena secretly a spy for the Inerma?

Never Say Goodbye? - The girls prepare a party for the graduating student council members.

Inerma and Dunamis - The girls learn of how Inerma is being controlled by a Goddess of destruction Dunamis and Ena is her avatar of destruction and defeats all the teams but Team E.  

Fabricated Life - Azumi and Team E decides to save their friend Ena and free her from the mind control of Dunamis.

and Code Reunion - Only Team E is left to fight the Doomsday device heading toward Earth, can love and friendship truly save the world?

Now for playback quality. The 1080p 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image transfers for the episodes of both shows look great and are both 4K disc candidates for their color and detail. They are recent productions and it shows. Both also offer Japanese DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 2.0 Stereo lossless mixes that are passable, but are not as rich, warm or strong as one would have liked. Demon also adds an English dub in DTS-MA 2.0, but it is even a little poorer.

The 1080p 1.85 X 1 digital High Definition image transfer on Courage is also fine, if not as vivid as the Sentais, but looks fine and a 4K version should also be considered here. As for sound, you get both Korean and (again lesser dub) English DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mixes that are much more like it sonically. There is definitely a larger audience for this one.

- Ricky Chiang


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