The Devil Is a Part-Timer! Volume Five includes the story that comprises the final arc in the second season of the anime adaptation.

The Devil Is a Part-Timer! Volume Five
Written by: Satoshi Wagahara
Publisher: Kadokawa Corporation
English Publisher: Yen On
Release Date: August 23, 2016

Volume Five opens with the residents of Villa Rosa Sasazuka moving back into their respective apartments. This was a great scene, and it’s too bad that it wasn’t included in the anime adaptation. I especially wish we’d gotten to see Urushihara discovering the HD hookup, because this would have worked well for animation. Instead, the anime gave us two filler episodes that take place at a farm owned by Chiho’s family, which is followed by the apartment residents already back in their apartments. Since such a big deal was made about these characters having to vacate the apartments, it just seems like removing the scene of them moving back in was yet another missed opportunity.

The majority of Volume Five focuses on Maou wanting to get a television, and the archangel Gabriel making a return (as well as introducing a new angel to the reader). Emi’s mother, Laila, plays an important role in this volume as well. When it comes to Maou wanting the television set, the light novel’s depiction feels more natural, since there was the scene of Urushihara discovering the new HD hookup in their apartment. In the anime adaptation, Maou’s desire for a television just kind of feels like it’s coming out of nowhere.

Chiho also becomes important in this volume, because she falls into a coma after coming in contact with a sonar pulse being sent out by the new angel in his pursuit of Laila. But Chiho is the only person who is affected in this way. For most people, they just see a strange white flash, and perhaps their television is damaged. But Chiho’s coma serves as the catalyst to get the story in motion.

In Volume Four, it was being hinted at that Rika, Emi’s co-worker, was developing an interest in Ashiya. Volume Five provides confirmation that Rika is falling for him, and it’s an important plot point during the shopping trip for a television set. Of course, Emi isn’t happy with the idea of Rika falling in love with one of the demons, since Rika doesn’t know the truth about Emi and the others.

There are several important revelations about Emi and Ente Isla that come out over the course of The Devil Is a Part-Timer! Volume Five. These revelations could have a major impact on the story as it moves forward. The revelations also provide important character development for Emi, especially when they lead her to start questioning her motivations for going after the Devil King and his subordinates.

It’s interesting to note that in the final episode of the second season of the anime adaptation, the final two scenes in the epilogue were omitted. It’s likely a combination of time constraints and that the first couple of scenes in the epilogue work as a much stronger cliffhanger to hook the audience into returning for the next anime adaptation that, as of this writing, will be forthcoming in 2023.

I read several complaints in reviews of the final couple of episodes of the second season that the story felt rushed. Unfortunately, nothing was omitted from the light novel adaptation at that point in the story that would have made a difference in the pacing. Of course, it didn’t help that there were those two filler episodes on the farm thrown in right before this arc that slowed the pacing of the season down, so that probably helped to make the remaining episodes feel a little more rushed than they would have otherwise. I know I’m harping on those episodes on the farm, but they really added nothing of value to the second season of the anime, and they only managed to make the pacing issues worse than they already were.

I had the sense from watching the anime adaptation of the material from Volumes Three, Four, and Five of the light novel that it felt more like a bridge section to get to the next major plot point in the story rather than being a strong story on its own. After reading these three volumes of the light novel, I still feel this way. The lack of a strong overarching story isn’t as noticeable in the written format, but it was glaringly obvious when this material was animated. I’ve had a theory that the anime studio that made the first season of The Devil Is a Part-Timer! anime passed on the opportunity to adapt the series further because they saw what was coming next and could tell that it would be hard to adapt to a visual medium. After reading these volumes, I feel just as strongly about this theory as I did when I finished watching the anime adaptation of this material.

I’m looking forward to reading the sixth volume of The Devil Is a Part-Timer! light novel series, because I’ll be getting to material that hasn’t been adapted for animation yet at the time I’m writing this review. Of course, that means that going forward, I’m going to have to put disclaimers in the opening of future reviews of the series in the hopes that it will help prevent anime-only fans of the series avoid getting spoilers for what’s coming in the future.

If you’ve seen the second season of the anime adaptation, then you pretty much already know what to expect if you read The Devil Is a Part-Timer! Volume Five. The main differences are the scene of the characters moving back into their apartments and two scenes from the epilogue were left out, and the light novel doesn’t include the farm story.

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