Heavenly Delusion Review

Heavenly Delusion Review

Heavenly Delusion anime series cover art
Heavenly Delusion

The Best Anime of Spring 2023

Heavenly Delusion (Tengoku Daimakyou / 天国大魔境) is the best anime from the spring 2023 season. I rated it higher than Vinland Saga, “Oshi no Ko”, and An Explosion on This Wonderful World! Those series all received 8/10 scores. But, Heavenly Delusion got a 9/10.

You may not have heard of this series, though. So, what is it? It’s a sci-fi, adventure, mystery series. And, importantly, its demographic is seinen. This isn’t another generic shounen series.

As for what it’s about, that’s where things get a bit complicated. There are really two stories going on at the same time. One follows two teenagers as they traverse Japan after some sort of apocalypse. And the other is about a group of children and teens who live in a facility sometimes known as “the nursery.”

A lot of the mystery comes from how these stories are connected.

Maru and Kiruko from the anime series Heavenly Delusion
Maru and Kiruko

But, what makes the series better than the others that came out at the same time? The characters are pretty good. Though, I wouldn’t say they’re better than those in Vinland Saga or “Oshi no Ko”. Instead, it’s the world, story, and mystery that make Heavenly Delusion stand out.

The world of Heavenly Delusion is an interesting one. Some sort of apocalypse happened. But, we don’t have much information about it. All we know to start is that civilization collapsed and man-eating monsters appeared.

It seems like these monsters are the main thing preventing humanity from rebuilding. But, there also might be something more going on.

Anyway, our two protagonists, Kiruko and Maru, are traveling in search of “Heaven.” Maru was told to head there and find someone who looks just like him. And Kiruko is serving as his bodyguard while also attempting to find someone from her past.

LGBTQ+ Baiting?

There’s one little thing I’m not much of a fan of in Heavenly Delusion. And to discuss that, I’m going to need to spoil parts of the series. I highly recommend you watch this anime, though. So, I’ll forgive you if you pause reading this review until after watching it.

So, Heavenly Delusion feels a little bit like LGBTQ+ bait. There do seem to be some confirmed LGBTQ+ characters. Though, the only ones I can think of are two random girls in the nursery who we see kissing. I don’t even think we ever learn their names.

But, the issue I have isn’t with a lack of representation. I don’t believe every series needs representation. However, this one baited me into thinking there was representation on multiple occasions. And the first of those occasions came when Kiruko said she’s a boy on the inside.

Kiruko looking in a mirror from the anime series Heavenly Delusion
Kiruko looking in a mirror

It was very clear. Maru makes some romantic advances on Kiruko. And Kiruko responds by saying that, despite her appearance, she identifies as a boy. I think she pointed at her head and said she’s a boy “up here,” or something.

But, not too long after that, we find out that Kiruko isn’t actually trans. Well, not in the way we were led to believe. It turns out that Kiruko is the victim of a forced brain transplant. While the body is Kiruko, the brain is Haruki. Haruki was Kiruko’s younger brother who awoke in her body.

There’s a second piece of LGBTQ+ bait, as well. Tokio, a teen in the nursery, appeared to be male. Tokio then got into a relationship with an older boy, Kona. And then, there was the shocking twist that Tokio became pregnant with Kona’s child. Why were we led to believe Tokio was male?

Past and Present

Now it’s time for the major spoilers. Remember how I said there were two storylines going on at the same time? Well, it’s heavily implied that they’re not simultaneous. What we see in the nursery happened around 15 years earlier than Maru & Kiruko’s adventure.

Initially, it was thought that the person who looks like Maru must be referring to Tokio. They look very similar. But, we later learn that Maru is Tokio’s child (or a clone of said child). He doesn’t know it, but he’s searching for his twin (or clone, or original, or something).

But, that’s not the biggest twist. You could see that coming for a bit. The biggest twist was when we learned what the man-eaters were. They’re the children, or at least some of them, from the nursery. You see, those children weren’t human children. Or, if they were, they aren’t anymore.

Children of the nursery from the anime series Heavenly Delusion
Children of the nursery

Mimihime actually has large, animal ears (and can see the future). It looks like Kona might have the ability to control the future with his drawings — man-eaters look like them. And, Ooma can cause people to have hallucinations of their greatest fears.

The children being man-eaters isn’t explicitly said, though. So, how can we be sure? Well, there’s a pretty good theory about Mimihime being the dying girl in the hospital Maru kills. And Usami, her caretaker, is Shiro. I won’t go into it here, but the idea is that this is why Mimihime had a phobia of sharp objects — she saw her own future.

The most depressing one, though, is Ooma. She was a young girl who couldn’t make friends because of her power. But, Mimihime befriended her anyway. And, Maru and Kiruko kill a man-eater with Ooma’s ability in the basement of the hospital where Mimihime is.

Conclusion

Heavenly Delusion is a great mystery series, which is why I gave it a 9/10. And, it’s not over. This season didn’t conclude the story. So, hopefully, that means we’ll get another season in the future. And if we do, I’m definitely going to be reviewing the episodes weekly.

Oh, and this series had one of my favorite OPs of the season. It has a good song and some pretty good visuals, too.

If you enjoyed this review, remember to share it with everyone you know. Also, follow me on your social media of choice so you don’t miss out on any future articles — links are in the footer.

Finally, I’d like to thank Roman and JasonHK for supporting DoubleSama.com at the Heika tier this month. To learn more about becoming a supporter of this blog, check out Patreon.com/DoubleSama.

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