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Review: Nyaruko: Crawling With Love! Blu-ray Season 1 Set Premium Edition

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Crawling with Lovecraftian humor

Originally released in 2012, Nyaruko: Crawling With Love is a bizarre little romantic comedy which takes a typical harem anime set up and inserts tons of references to Lovecraft into the mix. The end result is a weird series that will make some people laugh and some people run for cover. 

The story is pretty simple; while out and about one day, the hero Mahiro is attacked by a monster only to be saved by a Nyarlathotep who goes by the name Nyaruko. After being saved, Mahiro learns that his life is in danger and Nyaruko moves in to protect him at all costs. Along the way he meets more aliens including a Cthugha named Kuko (who is in love with Nyaruko despite the fact that they're supposed to be enemies) and the wind deity Hastur. 

Nyaruko: Crawling With Love! Blu-ray Season 1 Set Premium Edition [Blu-ray]
Studio:
Xebec
Licensed by: NIS America
Release Date: 4/15/14
MSRP: $64.99

Despite having never read anything that Lovecraft has ever written, I enjoyed Nyaruko: Crawling With Love when I first saw it on Crunchyroll a couple of years ago. It was never a particularly deep series but it was fun, and so I was looking forward to re-watching it and seeing how it held up on a second viewing. What a difference a couple of years can make. 

That isn't to say that I was absolutely bored by this series; it's actually pretty hard to be completely bored by this one, as there is always something going on which makes for a sometimes entertaining viewing. There are certainly more than a few large flaws however which will make this tough to get through for some anime fans. 

The biggest of these flaws is that the characters are over-the-top to the point of being downright unlikable. When it comes to love and hate, every character dials it up to eleven. Nyaruko is literally throwing herself at Mahiro every chance she gets, Kuko is the worst type of yuri character (imagine Kuroko from Raildex only with far less subtlety or cleverness) and Mahiro shows his displeasure at Nyaruko by stabbing her with forks -- seriously. I kept a running tally of how many times he stabs her with a fork and was up to ten before I even reached the end of the first disc. It's really hard to get into what little story there is when you can't even enjoy the characters. 

There are good points along the way. If you're a fan of Lovecraft, you're going to enjoy all the little inserts and references that are thrown in. If you've never actually read any of his works though, you're going to be constantly going to Google in order to figure out what the characters are talking about. Luckily, most of the jokes are pretty blunt so a complete understanding of the world isn't particularly necessary, but if you actually want to understand everything in this series you'll want to keep a wiki page open at all times while watching. 

As with other NISA titles, the real extras are the pretty art box and collectible book that comes with the release, while the discs themselves are pretty empty. The only extras are trailers and clean animations, so if you're looking for special features to peruse, you'll be sorely disappointed in that regard. 

This can be a cute and, dare I say, funny series at times. However it's not something that I can fully recommend or endorse with all my heart. It has its moments, but overall this isn't a series that anyone absolutely has to have in their collection. Be sure to check out a couple of episodes first before you commit to buying this one. If you enjoy the first two or three episodes, you're highly likely to enjoy the rest of the series, as it's much more of the same with few added tricks up its sleeve. 

5.0 – Average. The definition of mediocre. It has many flaws, and just couldn’t follow through on its intentions or had ones that were simply too narrow to warrant consideration. Some will still enjoy it, but should temper their expectations, or perhaps just opt to pass. Watch more trailers and read more reviews before you decide.


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Nyaruko-san: Crawling with Love reviewed by LB Bryant

5

MEDIOCRE

An exercise in apathy, neither solid nor liquid. Not exactly bad, but not very good either. Just a bit "meh," really.
How we score:  The Japanator reviews guide

 
 
 

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LB Bryant
LB BryantAssociate Editor   gamer profile

I've been writing about anime and manga either professionally or semi-professionally since August 31st 2005 starting on before graduating up to ICv2 and other sites more + disclosures


 



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