And we’re back to 2 unrelated stories again with previously introduced characters making a strong comeback for laughs. Satan visits to lecture about himself while his chief aide Beelzebub (Konishi Katsuyaki‘s got great comedic timing if you haven’t already witnessed it before) accompanies, along with his high-maintenance wife Lady Lilith (Honda Takako). Can Beelzebub finally go one-up against the Japanese demon who’s every being exudes the Japanese work culture (i.e. work 24/7)? Hakutaku also makes a pleasurable return in discussing how he’s the greatest sell-out on all monsters in China and how his feud with Hoozuki actually goes waaaay back to 4,000 years ago. Guess they were just meant to hate each other from the very beginning~
One can never have too much Hoozuki. This is the 3rd time I’m watching this series with the most recent being for the sake of reviewing. The first 2 were just cos after a long day at work, Hoozuki’s dry acerbic witty dialogue and in-jokes just made for the best soothing cool down to the day. And this episode just exemplifies what makes Hoozuki so quintessentially Japanese yet with a hilarious take on their work culture/ethics!
1. Never commit adultery with another man’s wife.
Sounds easy enough and common sense. But no, instead of outright turning down Lady Lilith which would be rude, Hoozuki offers to introduce her to someone else who’s willing to commit said adultery – Hakutaku. It takes a flirt to know another and without a word communicated between Lilith and Hakutaku, they exchange mobile phone numbers and hit it off immediately. Lilith’s strike zone (lol because I’ve never heard anyone describe a diverse taste as a large strike zone) is very wide going from innocent Nasubi to sadistic Hoozuki. She was rumoured to be the first wife of Adam and because they quarrelled over who would be top and bottom (this was so funny I stopped to think maybe I shouldn’t be laughing so hard actually haha but hey, Hoozuki’s politically incorrect with a straight face!), resulted in the western countries’ first divorce – wasn’t the snake’s fault! She and Daji (refer episode 10) are the top 2 members of the all women’s club where they plot as devils and demons would, to
corrupt and use love and be loved by all men. Alas for Daji, no one is as good as Emperor Shang though Lilith has settled for Chief Beelzebub and his “magical” credit card or as her butler said, a most realistic piece of plastic which sends all her shopping bills to Beelzebub to settle.
2. Never turn a guest down.
Lilith wants to spend an entire day with Hoozuki and he can’t say no to a guest right? So he brings her to the Lake of Blood where he conceives a tourist attraction idea for Romania’s vampires while out entertaining her. Oh Hoozuki, how you do so with a straight face never ceases to amuse me. Beelzebub is concerned that with the increasing diplomatic ties between European hell and Japanese hell, whether or not he can use Japan as a stepping stone for Satan to conquer the Orient lies on one demon in his way – Hoozuki. He challenges Enma’s right-hand man to a multitude of sports (torture was what came to Hoozuki’s mind – says a lot about his character) so as to finally feel one-up against Hoozuki. Hoozuki cannot refuse a guest no matter how silly the suggestion. That’s how they do things in Japan! In the end, Beelzebub doesn’t win, even when he thinks he has Lilith on his side against the ever so single and available Hoozuki. He loses when he finds a photograph of them together and blows like dust into the wind~
3. Drink up.
We all know the Japanese work culture is prone to drinking and therefore pouring each other sake. It’s a vicious and never ending cycle (refer episode 10) and it seems this was what happened 4,000 years ago when a young Hoozuki first met Hakutaku. Japan hell was in full World of Darkness mode back then (very RPG lol) and so Hoozuki took the opportunity like many others, to travel and learn from other realms. A chibi Hoozuki rides on a Panda in China and eats longevity peaches along the way, enjoying his youth as he backpacks through the mountains. Hakutaku was the one who first offered Hoozuki a drink. And that’s where it all went downhill, literally. Drinking day and night, pouring drinks for each other, Hoozuki managed to learn (extract) about the judicial system in China’s Netherworld whereas Hakutaku just got more and more drunk (refer again to ep. 10 – Hoozuki drinks like the demon he is), eventually falling into the mundane world where he proceeded to become the biggest sell-out in history by exchanging his life for the stories of 11,520 monsters in China, to the Emperor, who’s existence is unknown ha! So 4,000 years later, as Momotaro observes, for enemies, Hoozuki and Hakutaku sure spend a lot of time together (Hoozuki fondling Hakutaku’s white rabbits just shows how much the demon loves animals). They may both be versed in medicinal treatments but to play shiratori (word chain) and with Hoozuki uncharacteristically being childish to aim for Hakutaku’s 3rd eye to jab, they are clearly enemies meant for one another in a relationship that’s worth watching HnR for all on its own merits.