Devil Hunter Yohko
Also known as: Mamono Hunter Yohko
Yohko 1 - Yohko Mano is a girl with little on her mind other than finding romance (with whatever boy she has a crush on today). As is the case with most girls with ninja grandmothers, Yohko's family is fairly traditional. Yohko is destined to become the 108th generation Devil Hunter; the last thing a modern girl looking for a boyfriend wants. With her current crush about to be offered as a demon sacrifice, and her grandmother taking a mortal wound, she may have no choice. Teenage years are so complicated.
Yohko 2 - Although only recently becoming a devil hunter, Yohko already has a knack for the business. Then a girl named Asuza shows up asking to be her apprentice. When Asuza stumbles on a shrine awaking a demon king, Asuza is in over her head. Then again, Yohko may defeat him by herself either.
Yohko 3 - Yohko has visions of a handsome prince sealed sealed away for a forbidden love. That same day, she's transported to a dimension, only to meet that same prince. This time the hot guy won't get away!
Yohko 4 - Music video collection
Yohko 5 - Each devil hunter has a right of passage fighting the most powerful demon: Tokima. But which is the bigger problem? The demon lord on the loose with all his seals broken bringing about the destruction of the world, or Yohko's annoying grandmother returning to her youthful self after a time warp accident?
Yohko 6 - Yohko's toughest opponent yet is a rival... who looks just like her. The Mano family split generations ago, in a rift over who had the right to succeed as the true devil hunters. Now they've returned, intending to take that right by force.
Devil Hunter Yohko isn't noteworthy aside from being the first title released by ADV, thus given special treatment by that company. The premise of a girl with superpowers fighting demons isn't a new one, and has been done to death since, but when on release Devil Hunter Yohko this was a pretty exotic theme for American audiences. A bit of fan service, action and kind of silly; Devil Hunter Yohko is one of the first action comedy titles released in American markets.
Each OVA is self contained, and released over years with different art styles and budgets. Grouping them together isn't exactly fair, but they're similar enough, and usually packaged together these days.
Yohko 1 is standard for a title released in 1990. It's a supernatural action horror anime, with action and nudity. It takes itself a little too seriously for the comedy to work, but isn't exactly bad. In the OVA 2-3 the franchise dropped the "horror" stuff, becoming an action comedy which works much better. These lack depth and they feel feel a bit generic, with unremarkable stories as well. In Yohko 5 everything comes together in just the right way, and I would say is my favorite. By Yohko 6 things get tired, and the plot drops to an "evil twin" story.
What prevented DHY from being a speed bump in anime history is a matter of timing. While not bad, it's only a decent fluff piece. When taken in context of the overwhelming options for fluff anime these days, there's no compelling reason to pick this one up. Still it holds a place dear to my heart as one of my favorites. As the first ADV release, the dub is typical for the poor quality of the day. An odd thing about the dub is how the music becomes very understated. Better to go with subtitles for this one.
I will say one thing though, Devil Hunter Yohko has more bad ass posing than any other anime. (For it's time constraints anyway).
Yohko: I hold no enmity against those coerced into evil, but to those vile beings who toy with the hearts and souls of men. Since the time of ancient gods we have been your destroyers. Now, the 108th generation Devil Hunter Yohko is here!
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