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Something of a disappointment...
on 7 April 2005
Urotsukidoji centres around Nagumo, a high-school kid with the power to transform into the Overfiend, also known as the 'Chojin'. (This is fair enough, as the Overfiend's destiny is to unite the worlds of the Ninjinkai - humans, the Jyujinkai - manbeasts, and the evil demons, the Makai...) His girlfriend, Akemi, is the one who suffers most from this, as Nagumo cannot control his transformations throughout the first movie.
However, the most striking character has to be the powerful Amano Jakou, whose task is to seek out the Chojin, along with his sister Megumi, and his faithful servant, who provides the main comic relief.
This great setup leads to an engaging first movie (Legend of the Overfiend), which doesn't really have an ending; it leaves the story completely open-ended, and quite terrifying, as Nagumo is trapped inside the form of the Chojin and rampaging around Tokyo.
However, Urotsukidoji's main problem is the large plot hole in between the first and second movies. Both work fine as stand-alone pieces of Japanese animé (and QUALITY ones at that), but where continuity is taken into consideration, Urotsukidoji slips somewhat.
The second movie (Legend of the Demon Womb) works fine in prospect, introducing Takeaki, Nagumo's cousin. After inheriting some blood from Nagumo, Takeaki is manipulated into becoming the evil king, who has the power to destroy the Chojin (and yes, the movie does end with both boys transforming and doing battle). All the familiar characters are here...
...but why is Tokyo suddenly repaired? How can Nagumo suddenly change into the Overfiend, and back, at will? And why is Amano suddenly not concerned? It doesn't make much sense.
Yes, I would recommend the first movie, but as far as the second one goes, the series is a bit of a let-down. Personally I would have liked to see Nagumo harnessing his own powers and controlling the Chojin inside him - which presumably he can do, but we don't see much of that - rather than introducing a totally new tragic hero. It's also disappointing that the first movie isn't resolved in the second.
See Urotsukidoji if you must, but it's best to take it with a pinch of salt - it seems to be in existence to deliver gore and sex scenes, which kind of spoil a rather interesting plot.
A bit of a shame, really.