Image copyright: © Patora Fuyuhara, HOBBY JAPAN/Principality of Buryunhild

Fantasy series take viewers and reader on grand tales in mystical lands that hold the fate of the world in the hands of the heroes. In Another World With My Smartphone disregards all of this and it’s better for it.

After accidentally being killed by God, Touya Mochizuki is given a new life in a fantastical world. However, instead of going on wondrous adventures, slaying dragons, and saving princesses he explores small ruins, takes jobs from a local adventuring guild, and enjoys life with his new friends.

Very often in fantasy anime series we’re treated to the daily lives of the characters in the first few episodes before entering the meat of the story. This allows us to quickly spot the different character arcs as well as entreat us to a gripping story. There are rare occasions, though, where we want to see the characters daily lives more than anything else. In Another World With My Smartphone does exactly this by giving us smaller adventures all while showing us the day-to-day activities of the protagonist. And by doing this it allows us to appreciate the every moment of each episode.

Image copyright: © Patora Fuyuhara, HOBBY JAPAN/Principality of Buryunhild

One of the ways the anime lets us do this is by splitting each episode into two very distinct parts: an action-adventure oriented section and slice-of-life section. It may seem like these two don’t mix well at first, but they do in fact complement each other quite well. For instance, in the third episode the story opens with our hero Touya talking about Shogi (Japanese chess). Because this isn’t a game that exists in this world, we see a handful of people become enamored with the game. Yet, when the episode shifts to action we see Touya and the female characters Elze Silhoueska, Linze Silhoueska, and Yae Kokonoe exploring an ancient castle. These two sections seem as though the have no bearing on each other at first, but without slow section in the first half of the episode the second half becomes less engaging. In other words, we want the action, but it’s made better when we wait just bit for it.

Yet, the action portions of the series tend to fall into smaller expeditions for Touya and company. Because of this the series feels as though it’s not building up to a larger and more important plot. That’s actually the genius of the series, though. Like the split between the action and day-to-day scenes, keeping the large world changing events to a minimum keeps us enticed to see what the next big change is.

This is what happened in the fourth episode. The episode introduces us to a short plot involving an assassination attempt on the King of Balfast. It’s a fairly contained adventure in and of itself, but it’s truly a world-changing event because the ramifications are vast when it comes to political power. So, by having Touya thwart this plot we actually see him engage in the larger goings on in the world. But, since his involvement is limited it doesn’t disrupt the core idea of the series: the balance of action and daily lives.

In Another World With My Smartphone is streaming on Crunchyroll.

Comments (1)
  1. This anime shows that fans are learning. I’m yet to see a fan of this.

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