Quick, what’s the first thing that you think of when somebody says “Agricultural Revolution”? The answer is obviously demon kings, maids, and demon maids serving demon kings in that order, right? That can’t be just me. No matter how well executed the episode is, and it is pulled off with a large measure of success, it tickles me pink that the complex web of social and economic issues surrounding the Agricultural Revolution is being explained by a demon queen with two sizable plots of land, an idealistic everyman hero who serves as her springboard for discussion, and a maid who’s to voluntary servitude as Hank Hill is to propane and propane accessories.
For a series that’s almost exclusively conversation-based lectures on the various issues surrounding medieval macroeconomics, the content goes by remarkably fast. One minute the characters are settling into their comfortable villa and discussing the four-field crop rotation system, as most people are wont to do, and the next the credits are rolling and I feel a profound appreciation for well-used autotune. It’s always a good sign when a show can cram in several agricultural lectures and still feel slick and entertaining, melding it into the plot without pummeling the audience over the head with information in clumsy asides. Suck it, Moyashimon Returns and Upotte.
Taking place in a time roughly analogous to the Late Middle Ages, the pieces are already in place to allow the alternate-universe version of the Agricultural Revolution to sprout and overtake the rest of the human world like a swarm of famine-killing locusts. Cross-continental trade is starting to boom, and the social gap between the aristocracy and peasantry is shrinking with the speed and ferocity of a narcoleptic glacier, paralleling Maou arriving at the village and teaching those around her how to increase their crop yield, supplemented by a very basic education. Coupled with two runaway serf children that are welcomed onto the serving staff, MMY manages to bring into the equation the most important aspect of every human advancement: agency. And I can’t enjoy it enough for that.
If there’s anywhere that the episode stumbles over itself, it’s with the stilted romance between Yuusha and Maou. In every scene where they’re alone, it’s like a cameraman offscreen holds up a cue card reading “Remember! Token romantic elements!” in big, bold font, leading the two to awkwardly make mooneyes at each other and stammer out lines that show uncomfortability, yet eagerness at progressing their relationship. While there’s definitely no lack of chemistry between the two, their romance isn’t exploited as much as it should be.
All in all though, the second episode of Maoyuu Maou Yuusha irons out most of the wrinkles from the first while delving a bit deeper. Boinging sound effects accompanying boob bouncing are gone, and there’s all of one noticeable jiggle from Maoyuu’s assets, down significantly from last episode’s quantities of “They’re doing it again! The fuck?” So yeah, well worth the watch.