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I’m not going to pretend that “Bad guy wants to be hero” is some new ground, but Sentai Daishikkaku is definitely one of the most fun attempts at it. At two episodes in, its shaping up to be a strong unique flavor in an already strong season.

Sentai Daishikkaku

It’s an anime with an interesting enough premise- the Dragon Keepers are your typical Super Sentai team, masked warriors who do weekly battles with an evil fortress that spews monsters into a stadium. But there’s a catch- the leaders of the monsters have been dead for years, and this is all just a big show put on with very real super powers.

Our protagonist is D, one of many alphabetized shapeshifting Dusters, your typical fodder enemy who abandons the fights for revenge.

Where The Magic Of Sentai Daishikkaku Happens

Now, you’d be forgiven if this is the part you rolled your eyes. Even if I can’t put a name to it, “I’m evil and I’m going to overcome the hero” feels like your typically cliche setup for a revenge power fantasy. Yes, the Dragon Keepers are kind of jerks. Yes, D’s human disguise looks like your generic loser otaku.

Sentai Daishikkaku

And that’s the catch. D is a loser. Not a charming loser, like Reigen. Not a funny loser, like Kazuma. He’s actually just a miserable pile of living sand. In the first episode he tries to make a heroic last charge to catch the Dragon Keepers unawares, and is so out of shape that Red Keeper ends up running to him to finish him off. In the second episode, he tries to infiltrate Red’s garrison and is so terrified of the normal grunts there that he almost gets his cover blown twice.

Heck, it’s not just him either. The Dusters are like the anime incarnation of the Monarch’s henchmen from The Venture Bros, just a bunch of slackers who see their staged conflict as a weekly assignment they have to phone in so they can get the other 6 days a week to not get beaten to a pulp.

Sentai Daishikkaku

It helps that this portrait of abject misery is presented in such a stylish way too. I’m reminded a lot of Kill La Kill, with its constant title card cut-ins and willingness to pull off some big acting shots. are an absolute delight. It’s not like we’ve gotten any particularly big action sequences yet- but the fact that the most expressive character is a faceless grunt should tell you the exact vibe of animation Sentai Daishikkaku is going for.

Hopes For The Future

Still, underneath it all, Sentai Daishikkaku has a good inkling of heart. D isn’t fighting to accomplish his mission, and the show has touched enough on things like feeling appreciated that it feels like we could be seeing a Wreck-It-Ralph style tone developing. Whether it sticks to “Kill all Dragon Keepers” or goes more introspective, it feels like Sentai Daishikkaku is on to something.

Considering we’ve yet to really see the other Dragon Keepers or much of the rest of the side characters (aside from one I fully expect to see dominating Pixiv), it’s safe to say I have an optimistic outlook for Sentai Daishikkaku. It’s a pretty sincere story that’s not just reliant on going “Don’t you recognize this from Toku?” and that’s already plenty enough to earn it a spot on my watch list. I’m not going to attempt to read the manga so I don’t know where it’s going to go next, but given what we have now I’m excited to see if this can Transform into something truly magical.

W. Amirul Adlan
Nmia Gaming – Editor W. Amirul Adlan