You only get one shot. If the first episode of an anime doesn’t impress me, it’s getting dropped.
Did In Another Generic Otaku Harem Fantasy World impressed me on its first episode? Well, if I’m making fun of the title and its originality, then no. It did not impress me at all.
In Another World With My Smartphone is disappointing. I’m talking “shut-in, black sheep in the family who watches anime all day, cosplays at anime cons, and doesn’t play sports like your father wanted you to; thus he disowns you” disappointing (kinda like some of you weeaboos out there reading this).
I was optimistic that this’ll be a good show based on its premise: Our hero, Touya Mochizuki, is resurrected and sent to a new fantasy-like world of his choosing by God (who accidently killed him by throwing down lighting towards the Earth, striking him). In this new world, Touya can still use his smartphone as it’s powered by magic. In addition, his phone is still linked to his former world, allowing him to receive information and news from it.
It’s an interesting concept that I haven’t seen in any other form of media. Seeing modern day technology powered by magic as it technology itself adapts to the fantasy world. It’s such a great idea and you think the writers of the show can do some amazing ideas with that, right?
Nah. All they give us is yet another cookie cutter otaku fantasy anime with world harem undertones, with some decent and cool ideas to help keep it little original. Outside of the original ideas however, this anime failed to impress me in reasons which I will go over.
The anime opens with the recently decreased Touya chilling in heaven alongside God (who looks like a regular lookin’ grandfather; with his glasses, normal clothes, and all). God explains to Touya that his death was accidental to His own carelessness, and begs for Touya’s forgiveness. Touya’s rather chill about the whole mishap and forgives God, understanding that people make mistakes and you must forgive them for it. I mean, yeah, he did died at such a young age and he didn’t fully experienced life, but at least he doesn’t have to live on Earth with all its awful people and problems. And God’s seems like a very chill, mellow, and sincere dude.
You gotta think positive sometimes, ya know?
Impressed by Touya’s forgiving heart, God makes up for his (literally) fatal mistake by reviving him into any world of his choosing (a fantasy world as mentioned earlier), as well as making his smartphone operate in this new world and gives him His number.
Following that, the OP animation starts to play. It starts out normally – upbeat music plays, there’s panning of forest landscape, Touya’s face’s appearing in the foreground, and annoying singing by some J-Pop idol girls, and holy hell it’s so annoying. Many red flags are going off in my head like I’m a Commie.
Things went from “this show won’t be bad at all!” to “this is going to be yet another annoying, generic otaku harem fantasy world anime ain’t it?” To start with my disappointment towards this aniem, Touya transforms into Kirito Clone #314 with a white pallet swap of Kirito’s school shooter trench coat. That alone should had made me drop this anime as soon as saw that, but I decided to curb my anger just for this review.
(Seriously, I’m not anime racist but, what’s with these light/web novel characters looking alike?)
Alas, my anger would soon dominate my chill and zen mind as the weeaboo-like OP music increased its awfulness. Like forreal, the music makes me want to choke out its producer. I’m willing to stack up and piss away $3500+ for a trip to Japan, just so I can personally strangle the anime’s music producer in hopes he or she will never make awful trash like this ever again.
That, or just master the song on the violin and make money off tips at anime cons from fans of this show. Hustle off these weeb kids and adults because they pay good money to hear violin covers of their favorite weeb song but I digress.
As for the OP animation, it’s what you expect from a Generic Otaku Harem Fantasy World Anime: The first phase of the OP is character introductions. First, we have two girls roaming the countryside. We can assume that they’re twin sisters due to their similar hair and eyes color, facial structure, and clothing. Any clues of their personalities and how different they are aren’t presented as their introduction but if I can take a guess, one is an introverted shy twin and the other is more extroverted, open, and brash.
Next, we’re introduced to some samurai girl who looks like the love child of that girl with owl off Samurai Showdown and Reimu off Touhou. She appears to be just like any other average and plain samurai girl in anime of this type so let’s move forward.
Following, is the obvious upbeat Himedere princess. I’m basing this sterotype off the fact of her position in this shot, the color coding of her dress, facial expression, and how her arms are up and spread like she’s a decision maker in her country.
She is followed by who I can assume to be another princess, perhaps a rival princess from another country. I can take a wild guess that she somebody close to her is either dead or missing based how she’s staring outside her window and the depressing look on her face. That, or her weedman whom she called two hours ago is on drug dealer time and is wondering why it’s taking him so long to come through.
We move forward with a below average gothic lolita reading in her dark and gloomy room filled with creepy stuffed animals. Then, we have some random minor character introductions. After that, is a quick ascending shot focusing on a floating island which is followed up by shot of a MILF and her daughter, maybe? Her student? Some kid she kidnapped? I dunno the connection between the two other than they have the same weird purple and white hair clips. Speaking of connections, is there a connection to the floating island and these two, given they had their introducing shots back-to-back with the same quick ascending panning.
Next, the OP focus back on that Himdere Princesss and she just look annoying with her overly happy childish Genki anime girl expression and animal mascot sidekick. She looks annoying and I hope her animal sidekick bites into her neck and drags her across the ground violently like Mantecore the White Tiger did Roy Horn. Just snatch all her shit up and maul her to death.
Then, we’re introduced to a secondary male character. He’s totally gonna be Touya’s rival or something with how he is position in the middle, there’s that speed lines pointing directing at him, and there’s a close up of his smug face. He has white hair, so he probably has a tragic past or something that will make the fangirls feel bad for him or something. Or “he” might be a cross-dressing girl with masculine features thus making everyone question their sexuality because it’s a harem show and we need to carter to every type of niche of animu girl archtype here – even reverse traps.
The OP transition to battle showcases and boy, are they boring. Every battle that is shown here lack any sense of direction towards urgency, excitement, or high stakes in terms of life or death. The brawler twin just curb stomps some dragon as she slams her fists into its body while her mage sister cast magic against….invisible enemies? Oh and we don’t know what kinda spell she just cast. I guess an explosion spell maybe? I dunno.
Reimu and Owl Girl’s love child fighting style example is one of the worse of this phase and here’s why: So Samurai Girl runs up on one lizard man) and lizard man puts up his shield to protect himself, right? But it looks like either Samurai Girl slice the shield or stomach of the lizard man but it’s hard to tell based off the camera angle and the awkwardness of the animation. Then she charges into two other lizardmen.
We can tell she’s charging into them based off the animation speed lines, but that animation just fades as she slices the first Lizardman’s shield, runs (with the speedlines re-appearing), the camera moving awkwardly behind her as the speedlines disappear and she attacks two more lizardmen. Just like with the first lizardman, we can’t tell if she hit them or not due to how weird the animation appears.
(Refer to the OP video link above as my GIF creation program wouldn’t work at the time of posting this review)
The scene quickly transition to the second princess firing a magic bow towards a group of some damn dirty apes who were just minding their own business. Not much to go on here, so let’s tear apart Touya’s battle.
Touya fights against some old dude in an empty arena for no reason. The fight choreography is lazy as there is no effort and direction with the sword fighting. The sword swings has no force or power behind them as they side step to the right. There’s small sparks at each clash of their blades but it’s not anything grand. In short, this is the worse battle of this phase due to the animator not caring or pressed for time and completion.
The OP finally ends with Generic Otaku Harem Fantasy MC (I’m not calling him by his real name anymore) and the girls standing in front of an unknown mansion. Will this be his personal penthouse for him and his harem where they all live in harmony? Are they going to do some The Great Gatsby type partying here? Is it some random dude’s house they just rented out the front lawn for this shot alone? Oh well, it doesn’t really matter.
At this point, my gut was telling me “Hey Benjamin, drop this now! It’s not worth your blood pressure rising due to your anger.” I ignored my gut’s warning.
“Nah, let’s see how laughably terrible this anime will get!” I rebuttal as I aggressively tapped my left index finger against the side of my laptop while punching the wall with my right hand in anger from witnessing such a generic show of a OP. I mean, this anime isn’t that utterly horrible. I can see why some folks may like it, but its’ not my cup of tea. And yet, I swear if I kept watching this entry level moe’ harem filth, I’d commit mass murder against all lonely otaku who love to project their harem otaku fantanties on main characters like this Touya..
I need to listen to my gut more often.
Once the awful OP ends, we see Generic Otaku Harem Fantasy MC lying in a field unconscious. He awakens, sees that he’s okay, and heads to town. As he questions how he’ll survive in this new world, Generic MC receives a call from God. After confirming that Generic MC is okay he informs him that he upgraded his phone to help him get through the new town with ease such as installing a map program detailing the area.
Once receiving the map updates, Generic MC heads to town, but is stopped by some weird, overly excited, possibly gay tailor; He begs the MC to sell his “bizarre” school clothes to him in exchange for some gold pieces and clothing to help blend in. The scene cuts away to an eye-catch of a recycled image of the MC checking his phone and annoying MMORPG-like music jingle.
“They’re gonna use this often, aren’t they? I hope not this is annoying.” I asked myself. “Eh, probably not, it’s just a one-time thing, right?”
Oh Ben, you’re so full of hope.
After receiving his new clothes (and being creped out by the tailor sniffing his old outfit), Generic Otaku Harem Fantasy World MC wanders around town, seeking the Silver Moon Inn as mentioned to him by the tailor. He needs a place to lounge in and settle in the new world. While searching for the inn, he encounters the set of twins from the OP being harassed by some thugs in an alley. The girls sold the thugs a damaged glass antler piece and believe they should not pay full price for it. They demand the girls to lower the price, which they refuse.
Touya decides to step in and help the girls. And once again, a red flag pops up in my head.
“Let me guess: Dude’s gonna play hero, somehow overpower the two thugs who’re in better shape than he is, and the two girls will sworn over him and befriend him, despite being ignorant of his origins.”
My theory will be soon proven right.
The thugs try to attack the kid but he takes them out with ease. During the strife, we’re treated to a sample of his powers bestow upon him by God. As the smaller thug charges towards the MC with a knife, he dodges the blade. He notices that he is moving so fast that the world feels like it’s in slow motion. Taking advantage of this, he smashed his elbow into the spine of the attacker, knocking him out cold. The anime doesn’t show what happens to the other thug.
Guess he saw his homeboy getting that ass whoop and was like “Nah bruh, I’m good. I didn’t even want that glass piece anyways.” and dipped off screen.
So Touya, or Generic Otaku Harem Fantasy MC. This kid’s a Gary Sue – blessed by God who enhanced his natural abilities. He managed to whoop one thug’s ass so badly that his homeboy ran off on him like he just ripped off the plug. In under ten minutes we’ve encounter awful OP music, a harem set up, a generic fantasy otaku dream world, and now a Gary Sue MC who’ve just impressed a set of twin girls with his powers.
The cynical me was yearning for the kid to act all cool and cocky against the thugs, only to have his skull caved in by them. Kinda like Subaru (Re:Zero) was put in his place for playing hero by the two thugs harassing Emila. Granted, In Another World With My Smartphone is a campy “stuck-in-a-fantasy-world”anime compared to Re:Zero, and the kid did died at such a young age. He earned the right to live out this fantasy life of being overly powered and have girls fall of him day one. But still, this lazy writing and train wreck anime makes wanna drink. I need to get drunk tolerant this trash.
Touya and the twins (Elze; a headstrong brawler and Linze; the quiet mage) are quickly acquainted. After revealing some information about his background, he tells the girls that he’s searching for the Silver Moon Inn. To the surprise of nobody who understand lazy writing and are knowledgeable in classic RPG troopes/clichés, the twins are staying in that exact inn and agree to let him join their adventure.
There’s another cut away shot with some awful guitar music playing while the voice actresses of the twins are humming along to the melody (off beat mind you). They sound bored; as if they just wanna get their paycheck and forget the fact that they worked on this show. I don’t blame them.
[Skipping several unimportant scenes ahead]
Later that night, we see Touya lying in bed checking his cell phone. The phone is still connected to his old world, so he still receives news updates from it as we see him reading an entertainment article on a popular band from his world breaking up. I personally like this, as it shows that life in his old world has move on after his death. This makes me wish that I wasn’t dropping this anime, because I want to see the writers play with the idea of Touya checking his phone for news updates in his old world.
The next morning, Touya, Elze, and Linze scan a bulletin board searching for quests to earn money. After the twins get Touya hip on how the guild system work, the three apply to hunt down and kill five horned wolves, collecting their horns as proof of killing the beasts. Before heading out, Touya arms himself with a sword – furthering the point home that he’s a generic action-fantasy web/light novel hero
Toyua tears through and flawlessly kill two wolves as expected (because you know, can’t have the Gary Sue MC get torn apart and slaughtered by wild beasts ass in mere seconds), one of the wolves being an extra kill just because. After the battle, he mentions that he wants to learn how to read and write in the language of the world he’s living in, given he lacks the knowledge of knowing how to. Furthermore, he wants to learn magic as he was inspired by Linze’s spell casting.
Let’s break this down: he gets to live in a world that he’s happy in (fair enough due to reasons mentioned earlier), he takes down thugs flawlessly, links up with twins, kills two monsters with ease (one which was an extra kill), and now he wants to learn magic. As a Gary Sue kid with an unprecedented natural learning rate and talent, he’ll master magic with ease of course.
As they’re chilling back at the Inn, the twins tell Touya that in order to learn and master magic, he must have been born with strong aptitudes. Linze (born with strong aptitude) showcases her magic spells to Touya through elemental stones. Linze shows Touya a weak water magic spell, filling a small tea cup up with water. She passes the stone to Touya, who on his first try almost floods the table. The twins are shocked and even impress by this and suggest that they go outside to have him practice with the othert stones before he destories the inn.
Of course, Touya shows impressive display of skills of each stone’s magic. He has no hassle in using their powers a few steps above the average. It’s like he’s of the Master Knight class from the stagery RPG Fire Emblem 4: Genealogy of the Holy War – he can use all magic and weaponry. Expert unlike say Lachesis of Leaf (two Master Knights) who had to work their asses off to get that class, this kid would start off as a Master Knight right from the gate.
After seeing the kid showcasing how much of a Gary Stu he is, I decided to drop the episode right there and then. I had enough of it.
In Another World With My Smartphone isn’t too terrible, but it’s not great either. For what it’s worth, this show works well for its target audience and demographic. It’s a campy, fun show that doesn’t take itself or clichés seriously. I can see it as a show for somebody who just wants to relax on an easy day with a beer (or juice for the younger folks) and chill out after a long day of work or school. As for people like me outside it’s demographic, I can’t recommend it.
I was really hopeful that this anime would have been different with using modern technology in a fantasy world that still work due ot magic. That is an amazing concept that I wanan see more in anime, because it’s something I’ve never seen before. While I did drop the episode, I did manage to peep at the scene where Touya is explaining how to create ice cream with magic thanks in part with his cell phone. I thought that was cool him showing the resident of his new world how the technology of his former world works.
I must also appreciate the RPG like aesthetics of this show. It made me felt like I was watching a campy RPG come to life and I personally wouldn’t mind playing a RPG game like this. The music itself has that classic smartphone RPG vibe with it light orchestral soundtrack playing the scenes. Granted, I will say it got annoying at certain points.
Sadly, the predictable overpowerness of Touya and him learning magic and weaponery with ease is a huge turn off. I get that he was blessed by God to have his natural abiblities increased ten folds, but it comes off as cheap and lazy. However, it seems like Touya will struggle with reading and writing overtime so I guess that’s a fair trade off.
In short, just skip In Another World With MY Smartphone if you dislike OP’d Gary Stu characters and overly capmy RPG troopes. It’s not worth wsting your time watching. If you don’t mind it and just want a warm, upbeat show to watch then I say watch it.
I would give this show a 4.5/10, but it’s that modern day technology in a fantasy world idea is great and I think if done right, it could be sometime exciting to see in future anime series. Plus
I’m tempted to give this show a second chance just based off how relaxing of a show this is. Also I just saw how the other thug was defeated after writing this. Dude was knock out by the brawler twin but I’m too lazy to edit that in lol.