Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? Season 3 Collector’s Edition Review

Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? (or DanMachi as its shortened) has just finished Part 1 of its fourth season in Japan. While we’ll have to wait for the Winter season for Part 2, fans of the series still have plenty to look forward to in the meantime. MVM brings Season 3 to home video this month in a fancy collector’s edition. Does it impress? Let’s find out! 

Our story begins like many in the world of DanMachi, with Bell and his party exploring the dungeon. During this trip, Bell encounters a young vouivre who instead of attacking him like most monsters, shies away from him and is clearly intelligent. Despite the reservations of his party members (Lilly, Welf, Mikoto and Haruhime), Bell wishes to protect the vouivre and decides to bring her aboveground so he can ask goddess Hestia for advice. He also gives the vouivre the name Wiene, to distinguish her from others of her species. 

Unfortunately for Bell, intelligent monsters are something that has never been discovered in the dungeon before, so Hestia can’t give him any useful advice. For now, the group must keep Wiene a secret while they work out the next steps in how to protect her from the dangers of both the dungeon and the adventurers. After all, if the members of a big familia like Loki Familia found out about Wiene’s existence, they’d certainly be out for blood. 

So this season of DanMachi is in uncharted territory for the series. Until now monsters in the dungeon have been nothing but a danger or something to defeat in order to grow stronger. The existence of these intelligent monsters (later called Xenos) sends Bell into a spiral where he struggles to fight any more. This only gets worse as he finds out that there are people who know of the Xenos and want to exploit them for their evil plans. Left to wonder if anywhere is safe for Wiene and how to go on as an adventurer himself, Bell has plenty to wrestle with. 

This season of the anime covers Volumes 9-12 of the original light novels. These make up the entire ‘Xenos’ arc and I think splitting these three books over the course of 12 episodes works out nicely in terms of the pacing. I confess that this is by far my least favourite arc in the series since I hate how wishy-washy Bell gets about his future and I’m not a huge fan of Wiene, but the anime does improve my opinion of it significantly, compared to the books. 

A lot of the problems I have with this arc are simply alleviated by not having big breaks in-between like we did when reading the books. Being able to watch the episodes back-to-back makes for excellent viewing, with plenty of twists and turns to keep you on the hook while the story moves along at a steady clip. Still, like me, some viewers may not be that interested in the Xenos in which case you’ll get more enjoyment out of the final handful of episodes where the focus has grown beyond them, and we get to see other familiar faces get involved in the fallout of the whole thing. 

And even if you don’t care about the Xenos or Bell’s struggles, we still get to see development for other members of his party. This franchise is always at its best when it remembers that Bell isn’t the only hero and it only works as well as it does thanks to being an ensemble cast. Just as Bell needs to make peace with continuing to fight other monsters, Lilly, Welf, Mikoto and Haruhime must come to terms with his decision to protect Wiene and grow stronger themselves to protect the people they love.

Animation for the series continues to be handled by studio J.C Staff and I’m pleased to report that compared to Season 2, the quality of the show has improved considerably (I’m sure this is due to not making a movie at the same time…). The end of this season contains what might be one of the best fights in the series so far; it’s a real spectacle and even if you aren’t a huge fan of this arc, in general, you will still undoubtedly love that battle. 

Music and voice actors remain the same as in previous seasons, although Wiene means a new addition to the cast. In Japanese, the character is played by Rina Hidaka (Silica in Sword Art Online, Milim Nava in That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime), while in English she’s handled by Cat Thomas (Momo in The Executioner and Her Way of Life, Yui Yuigahama in My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU). Both actors do a fine job in their roles, although it’s difficult for me to get attached to the dub when I have a fondness for the other members of the cast on the Japanese side of things. 

Like with the animation, it feels as if the soundtrack has improved since Season 2, with plenty of new tracks in the mix along with the usual returning compositions. The opening for this season is “Over and Over” by Yuka Iguchi, while the ending theme is “Evergreen” by Sajou no Hana. Both themes capture the series well, arguably better than any in the series so far and will be memorable in the long run. 

As previously mentioned, this release comes to the UK and is available on Blu-ray in a collector’s edition format. This release includes all 12 episodes of Season 3 with both the English dub and the Japanese audio, as well as an OVA episode (which is hilarious and well worth watching). On-disc extras include clean opening and ending videos, a “Sajou no Hana music video”, and the usual selection of trailers for DanMachi and other shows available from Sentai in the US. Physical extras include 5 art cards and a 56-page booklet. 

Overall, while this season of DanMachi may divide some fans as it goes in a different direction than you’d expect, this is still the series we know and love. At the very least it has some incredible animation to go along with what quickly becomes a highly emotional arc, so even if don’t enjoy it as much as what’s come before you’ll still want it in your collection. 

9 / 10


When she's not watching anime, reading manga or reviewing, Demelza can generally be found exploring some kind of fantasy world and chasing her dreams of being a hero.

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