Akuma Kun just blasted onto Netflix, adding to its impressive anime catalog. Based on the highly successful manga of Shigeru Mizuki, the anime series chronicles the story of Ichiro Matsushita, an Akuma Kun (a child prodigy who’s born every 10,000 years) who runs a detective agency, or, as he would like to call it, Millenarianism Research Agency, with his partner-in-crime, Mephisto III, a quirky demon with an unending love for ramen. The anime series is jam-packed with eccentric characters that would make you chuckle and think about the dangers of the world where demons co-exist with humans.
Ichiro Matsushita, known more commonly as Akuma Kun, was a child prodigy who was born every 10,000 years. He was the successor of Shingo Yamada, the last Akuma Kun, who was also his adopted father. Ichiro was friends with a half-human, half-demon named Mephisto III and was often called to fix the leak in his roof or unclog his toilet. Rather than hanging out with people his age, Ichiro runs a detective agency with Mephisto. To endure the boredom around him, Ichiro always kept gathering whatever knowledge he could get his hands on, whether it was about the demon or the human world, which is why he often kept refusing to take any cases, falling behind on rent as a result.
Ichiro was a socially awkward man and didn’t have any personal skills, maybe because he was raised by demons. He was blunt and spoke whatever came to his mind rather than polishing it to make people feel better. During his first encounter with Hina’s mother, he called her a monkey when she didn’t understand why he wanted pancakes with his coffee. Ichiro was ill-mannered, callous, and hardly cared about anyone; at least, that’s how it appeared. Ichiro also had a dream: to create a paradise where demons and humans could live in peace.
Mr. Tobayama was a wealthy man who had tasted every source of sustenance in the world, from those only the king and queen could afford to those even peasants would refuse. However, he got bored soon after and wanted to eat something no other man had ever eaten. He called Akuma Kun and Mephisto III and offered to pay them ten times their usual fee if they summoned Satan, the chief commander of Hell, for him. Why?
Mr. Tobayama wanted to strike a deal with the devil and wanted to taste his flesh. In return, he would give Satan any amount of human sacrifice or souls he required. Before Akuma, he had hired a handful of sorcerors, but instead of dragging Satan, they’d brought a hellish creature from hell. Akuma agreed to do the job and drew the sigil. Unfortunately, he made a tiny mistake that would have claimed his life. Satan appeared, burned Yokama in hellish fire, and threatened he would soon be back for Akuma Kun. Why? In reality, Akuma Kun shared Tobayama’s crime of gluttony and was too sinful, but he was ravenous for knowledge rather than food.
Gremory was one of the demons who made an appearance throughout the season. She was a hellish demon that signified lust and greed. Remember Hina, the young woman who asked for Akuma’s help to find out what killed her friends? Gremory was posing as Hina after her parents summoned her. In reality, Hina was dead, and since her parents couldn’t bear being separated from their daughter, they made a deal with the devil. However, Hina’s good-natured personality started suppressing the demon to the extent that she forgot her prior form. Akuma had no choice but to sever Hina from the protector symbol so she could not hurt anyone. Gremory went back to hell but returned soon after with a new aim: to eat Akuma’s heart. He agreed in return for finding a missing film but tricked her by never specifying when he would honor their deal. It could be tomorrow or just the day before he died. Throughout the episode, we see Gremory helping Ichiro in his investigation and his fight against another demon. This was maybe because she wanted to keep him alive so she could eat his heart.
Mephisto III was Akuma’s business partner and best friend. However, Akuma never agreed on the last part. He operated a detective agency, or, as they would like to call it, the Millenarianism Research Agency, to crack cases. However, unlike Akuma, Mephisto was keen on hopping on every case that came his way to afford rent and pay utility bills. Mephisto III is half-demon, was raised by both a human and a demon, and loved savoring ramen more than anything in the world. Unlike Akuma, Mephisto had social skills and was empathic toward others. We saw him often berating Akuma for being too blunt and cold-hearted, not feeling any emotion for the people around him. Mephisto was also a bit greedy, and nothing excited him more than the idea of getting rich by cracking cases so he could afford all the ramen in the world. As much as he loved ramen, the only thing that could set his teeth on edge was an unexpected invitation or summons by Akuma Kun.
Sanae and Mio
Sanae was an innocent woman who took whatever life threw at her with a smile. She had a daughter named Mio and was married to Hiroki Kazama. Kazama was a failed writer who was drowning in debt. He was often beaten and thrashed by loan sharks for failing to pay what he owed.
Unfortunately, while Mio was young, Kazama disappeared without a reason. Sanae tried to find him but to no avail. In reality, Kazama struck a devil with the devil and offered his soul.
In exchange, he asked for an ability so he could write a masterpiece that would make his name go down in history. However, like always, Mephisto III and Ichiro defeated the demon and rescued Kazama. Sanae also owned the place where Ichiro lived but never once bothered him for rent, even though he was months behind. Mio, his daughter, on the other hand, was less kind and often pressed on Ichiro and Mephisto’s nerves for rent.
Shingo Yamada was the predecessor of Ichirō Matsushita, and the demon who took Ichiro under his wing after he was abandoned was also the demon who raised him. Shingo was one of the most powerful demons and created a group of 12 apostles. Shingo Yamada had one dream: to achieve the Millennium Kingdom, a place where humans and demons can co-exist in harmony and where one kind isn’t a threat to the other. However, Ichiro, his son, strongly believed that it was a pipe dream, as demons are evil and always looking for ways to exploit or harm humans. Shingo often asked Ichiro to aid him in creating the Millennium Kingdom, but he was brushed off often. Even though Shingo and Ichiro didn’t talk much, he was always ready to aid his son, investigating and solving his paranormal adventures. In one instance, he saved Ichiro and Mephisto III from the demons who were controlling Hina’s parents.
Strophaia was a scarlet demon who was holding the cards for the many demons that Mephisto III and Ichiro faced during their many investigations. Strophaia also trapped Shingo inside a magic barrier to make sure he didn’t hamper his plan. Throughout the season, we saw him trying to meddle with Ichiro’s investigations. Shingo defeated him using Solomon’s flute back when he was Akuma Kun. This was where he found Ichiro, who at that time was called Aeshama. Shingo took Aeshama under his belt and raised him as his own. Strophaia was born eons before humanity and wished to eradicate the human world. He also wanted to kill all the twelve apostles. Stopping his plans was so important that Ichiro even agreed to offer Gremory his heart. Strophaia was under the impression that he existed beyond the rules and could do anything he wanted, regardless of the consequences. However, his plans had a loophole, and Shingo and Ichiro capitalized on it and defeated him.