I really wanted to dislike this show. What with the average artwork, the overdone Zero no Tsukaima-esque magical steampunk setting, and the harem by the numbers setup. But then about 5 minutes through, when Akuto learned of his future career as Demon Lord and the misunderstandings began, I was dekkai won over.
So really, there’s not much to the story. Akuto is a hard working, earnest guy who wants to become Pope, and enrolls in a magical academy, because everyone knows there’s no better place to build a harem. There’s something about "magic" that just gets the hearts a’ thumping and the skirts a’ flipping. On the way to the Academy, Akuto meets Hattori, who apparently comes from a lineage of samurais that have protected the Pope throughout history (no one ever said anime made sense). So they instantly become good friends and pledge a death oath to each other. Just your normal, every day magical academy life.
But then the shenanigans begin during the initial health inspection (which also serves to divine student’s futures), and instead of being told that he’d become a Pope, Akuto learns that instead he’s going to be a magical version of Hitler. Da derp de derp.
Cue misunderstandings. Including the brutal deflowering of Hattori (in the minds of all the other students, who learn that they "messed around" on a train). From Akuto’s "destroy the existing rules" speech, to him volunteering for yakuza cleanup crew, to the explanation of his relationship with Hattori, the misunderstandings were really funny, particularly because of the way the class kept imagining the worst possible scenario. It was a lot like how in Detroi Metal City, Krauser would try to explain something innocuous, but his fans would blow it up into epic proportions.
From there, the show just gets more and more ridiculous. And in that sense, it reminded me a lot of Baka Test, although the character designs and animation aren’t nearly as good. I’m not sure if Ichiban will be able to keep it going for the rest of the season, but if it can keep dipping into the well of Baka Test ridiculousness, and DMC-like misunderstandings, I think it could be a surprise hit.