It took four – well, technically five – episodes to get there, but we're finally getting an explanation for Evil Iruma. It's one that makes a surprising amount of sense and is much less alarming than I initially assumed it would be; about all that's as expected is that Ali-san is behind it. Basically he's forcing Iruma to go through the evil cycle that demons experience, which makes perfect sense because it would be weirder to the people around him if he didn't have one…Unless evil cycles are like menstrual cycles and start at a different time during adolescence for everyone? Whatever the case, the person who stands to be the most freaked out by the whole thing is Grandpa, because he knows that Iruma's a human sans evil cycle, so unless Ali-san decides to reveal himself, the poor man's unlikely to know what's going on. On the other hand, I expect Opera is fully aware of any and everything that happens under his roof, and possibly in the entire world.
That's all in the last couple of minutes of the episode, though, leaving us a lot of time for goofy filler action. It's a lot of fun, really, but it pales a bit in comparison to the plot-centric episodes that came before it, mostly because it feels like the series is backtracking to a degree. I'm pretty sure Azz-Azz and Clara have been to Iruma's house before back in the first season, so either I'm remembering incorrectly (it's the end of the semester, so that's incredibly possible) or this season has just decided to ignore that fact. Whatever the case, the main thrust of the story here is that Sullivan and Opera have been throwing Iruma welcome home parties every night and now it's time for the welcome home afterparty, and Sullivan tells Iruma to invite his friends. And while there are more than just Asmodeus and Clara who could fit that description, they truly are his absolute best buddies, so off goes the text message and over come the friends.
Probably the best part of this whole thing is just seeing the three of them together again after four episodes where they were forced into different battlers. We know it was hard on Azz-Azz (and Clara was hard on other people), but this is a nice confirmation that they all missed each other, even if Iruma can't quite believe that he's managed to get such good friends. His panic at inviting them in the first place is adorable, and the alacrity with which Asmodeus responds is both impressive and sweet, although it does make me wonder if he just has his phone in hand at all times just in case Iruma messages him. Grandpa's a little jealous of how cool Iruma's friends (and Opera) are, but that just fuels the sillier plot points, and overall watching him try to outdo them makes for some good comedy for everyone except his poor horse monster.
Also fun is the way that Ali-san coaches Iruma into making his room clean and perfect because Clara is coming over only for Asmodeus to be the one to act like the stereotypical girlfriend the entire time. He goes over Iruma's bedroom with a fine-toothed comb, and his nerves at being at Iruma's house are definitely worse than Clara's and much more in line with how Ameri's been acting lately. Not that anyone really notices, but it says a lot about Azz-Azz and his intense attachment to all things Iruma.
This isn't quite as good an episode as the ones that came before it, but it definitely gets us where we need to be for the next major storyline. And if nothing else, it drives home how astoundingly perfect at all things Opera is (and makes me feel worse about my abysmal DDR track record). If there's anyone Asmodeus has to worry about impressing in order to be Iruma's best friend for life, I don't think it's Sullivan – because I don't know about you, but I wouldn't want to go against the world's most perfect being, no matter what the reason.