If you’re not watching Overlord, then what the Hell is wrong with you?

Although Overlord is in its third season, it doesn’t seem to be getting the hype like the third season of Attack on Titan or Sword Art Online. To be frank, that really pisses me off. This is an anime everyone should be watching.

It has relatable characters, a fantasy world we’d all want to jump into, formidable allies, and magical power beyond belief. Add to that a bevy of gorgeous vampires, succubus, and battle maids at your command, and you’ll realize it’s every nerds dream come true.

Overlord, in a nutshell, is about a gamer who stays logged into his favorite fantasy game while they shut the server down for the last time. Then he suddenly finds himself and all the NPCs (non-player characters for any noobs reading this) transported to a fantasy world with all their powers and abilities intact. He decides to set out and take over the world.

Anyone who has spent a weekend playing D&D nonstop, or pulled an all-nighter on Warcraft can relate to the main character, Ainz Ool Gown. Here is a guy who spent all his free time away from social angst by gaming, creating the most powerful undead sorcerer ever. Now he really is that sorcerer in a real fantasy world. Besides his constant monologing, it’s fun watching him read self-help books on being a good leader, learning how to interact socially with others, and ward off the affections of a certain succubus who lusts after his bones.

Other guardians who serve him are also creepy and fun. Demiurge is the coolest demon ever. You never know what he’s capable of. Shalltear is a vampire who will kill you without thinking and yet is the biggest where (when it comes to Lord Ainz that is). Albedo is, well, Albedo. She wants nothing more than to love Ainz, serve his every whim and wish, and have his baby too. These guardians are as ridiculously overpowered as they come, and yet, they have some very human flaws. It’s what makes them endearing.

That’s what I find so interesting about this anime. Here you have a collection of the most evil undead monsters ever assembled and yet you want to be with them. Their funny, cute, sexy, and even caring (at times). Even some of the people in this new world are more monstrous than they are.

Anime has its share of gamers going to worlds based on their in-game experiences, but Overlord is different. Because the main characters are not human, you see more of the humanity in them, and less in the other characters.




Mark Piggott is the author of the Forever Avalon book series. Forever Avalon is available for purchase as a book/ebook at Amazon. The Dark Tides is available for purchase as a book/ebook at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and iUniverse publishing. The Outlander War, Book Three of the Forever Avalon series is coming soon.

Where have all the good wizards gone?

785276646085089940It’s good to be bad, am I right? There seems to be a trend where anyone touched by or practicing magic is always seduced to darkness. The same goes for those who gain incredible powers or become something more than human. It begs the age-old question, “power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

Throughout fantasy storytelling, you get a glimpse of both sides of the coin. In The Lord of the Rings, Gandalf and Galadriel both resisted temptation from the One Ring but Saruman is seduced by Sauron and turned against the light. There are tons of names on both sides of the argument, from Harry Potter and Lord Voldemort to Merlin and Morgana le Fay. Lately though, the trend is leaning more towards evil, but to a point.

In fantasy, across multiple genres, there are a lot of examples that exude the philosophy that its good to be bad. The anti-hero is the “new Coke” as it were. From Deadpool, Venom, and Lobo in comics to characters like Anakin Skywalker, Willow Rosenburg and Walter White in movies and television. Writers love that little twist to make the story more interesting, and to many, being bad is good.

There is a vein of goodness in many of these anti-heroes, but its been twisted like a pretzel at Oktoberfest. The same can’t be said for wizards going dark. It’s like a touch of dark magic and there’s no turning back. I mean, think about it. Name one dark wizard who came back to the light. It’s hard, when you think about it … You really can’t do it.

Magic, like many things in the fantasy genre, has no clear line with good and evil powers. I mean, Necromancers have been portrayed as both good and evil (think the video game Diablo, for example, or Hellboy for that matter). Again, like everything in storytelling, its the character that counts.

Not to throw religion into the mix, but I like to believe that everyone is worth saving. I believe that we all have a chance to redeem ourselves in the eyes of God. You see that from a lot of writers, but at the same time, there is a trend of making evil as something seductive and enticing.

Look at vampires, and how over sexualized and charismatic they’ve become. They’ve gone from being the scary creatures in Stephen King’s Salem’s Lot and Christopher Lee’s Dracula in the Hammer horror films to glittering “boy toys” in the Twilight series. The only thing that is still scary, today and always, is clowns, am I right?

We need to get back to maintaining that line in the sand between good and evil. If we, as writers, continue to present stories with bad guys as the protagonist, what will our world become. Evil can be redeemed but it shouldn’t be glamorized.


51nd6H6sATL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_SKU-000941753Mark Piggott is the author of the Forever Avalon book series. Forever Avalon is available for purchase at Amazon and Barnes and Noble. The Dark Tides is available for purchase at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and iUniverseThe Outlander War can be previewed at Inkitt.