Random Curiosity

Vatican Kiseki Chousakan – 02 »« Tsurezure Children – 02

Isekai wa Smartphone to Tomo ni. – 01

OP Sequence

OP: 「Another World」 by AOP

「目覚め、そして異世界。」 (Mezame, Soshite Isekai.)
“Awakening, and Another World.”

I’m writing about a lot of these “Boy mysteriously gets transported to a different world.”-type stories. This time with a smartphone though! And boy, does that smartphone ever make things super interesting… If you were given anything to take with you in the afterlife, what would it be? Memories of your past? A chance to talk to your family and friends one last time? Your cell phone? Well, the latter is what Mochizuki Touya (Fukuhara Katsumi) wants. After dying young, God (Tachiki Fumihiko) gives Touya one wish, and he chooses to take his smartphone with him into his next life. God sends Touya (with clothes and memories and all) to another world to be “reborn” and he arrives – true to God’s promise – with his phone. However, like all wishes, comes restrictions which puts limitations on the usage of Touya’s phone. For one, he can’t contact his old family and friends with phone but he is allowed to still keep up with what’s happening and making internet searches. For another, it also magically recharges! Woot! Who doesn’t want that? In this first episode, Touya is introduced to the new world which he calls home now. He meets a variety of different people; most of them very nice and helpful people. Two of first females he meets include Silhoueska Linze (Fukuo Yui) and Silhoueska Elze (Uchida Maaya). They show him how to make money by completing quests and they’re the first (of many) to join Touya’s harem this series.

Overall, the impression that Isekai wa Smartphone to Tomo ni. left was a fairly predictable one. It’s one of many anime stereotypes which we’ve seen before but more lighthearted and definitely more comedic and manga-like in nature. There’s a ton of exposition in this first episode that explains the situations which Touya may or may not use his cell phone in and even explains a bit of the rules of engagement in this new world – from how to make money, to the “strange” clothes that Touya was wearing. It’s definitely an introductory episode (to be expected), but it also doesn’t provide a point of differentiation that grips me and pulls me in. Similar to a lot of other harems and manga, there’s the one catch about Touya (which is his smartphone) that’s the focal point of this anime and everything else surrounding it is formulaic. We’re introduced to his harem, and Touya also has a lot of the typical MC-syndrome (which somehow gives Touya heightened abilities to survive plus all magical abilities!). I wouldn’t say anything about this so far is surprising, but it’s not boring by any means if these are the stories you’d like to see.

I was probably hoping for more beef to the overarching story but we haven’t gotten there yet (if there even is one). All we know is that Touya has passed in his existing life and now he’s living in this world which resembles the average RPG video game. You can wield a sword, learn some magic, pick an “occupation”, make some friends, do some quests, you name it. Since magic does exist in the world and Touya seems to be able to create portals, maybe he does have a way to find “home” eventually – but we haven’t gotten there. The clear basis for this story isn’t the plot though, but mainly the comedy and the character interactions. Being based off a manga, there’s a lot of clean scenes that look like they’ve been plucked straight from the manga panels. They’re cute, and some cuts breakup the scenes, but also seems like a lazy way to transition from scene to scene. For the most part it doesn’t bother me, but I am interested to see if the story gets any deeper or if it’ll continue down this line of female introductions for half the season. Judging by the intro though, it seems like there’s quite a few that we may be acquainted with. I just hope that there’s more to the plot than that.

 

ED Sequence

ED: 「純情エモーショナル」 (Junjou Emotional by Uchida Maaya (内田真礼) / Fukuo Yui (福緒唯) / Akasaki Chinatsu (赤﨑千夏) / Kouno Marika (山下七海) / Yamashita Nanami (高野麻里佳) / Uesaka Sumire (上坂すみれ)

July 14, 2017 at 2:03 pm
27 comments »
  • July 14, 2017 at 2:14 pmseltzermx

    Yeah, hoping for more substance out of this one. And to be fair, having a smartphone with full internet access and battery in a technology-less world would be pretty OP by itself.

    • July 14, 2017 at 2:20 pmWorldwidedepp

      and hope, this Handy never broke (Display) and are waterproof

  • July 14, 2017 at 2:33 pmMechamorph

    Well I do find the cutesy aesthetic nice; when you have a smaller budget, work it as best you can. However I will give them this. This particular work has the most plausible explanation for the ridiculous overpoweredness of the protagonist I have yet seen. It basically boils down to “god did it”. And He was basically apologetic over accidentally killing someone and gave that fellow powers to compensate him in his new life. Part of me suspects he can also see into people’s character so god gives these abilities to someone who will not abuse them.

    Also a damn sight more competent than Aqua. Grant that is not difficult….

    • July 15, 2017 at 2:49 amIncognito

      More competent and less of a jerk than Aqua, too. I guess he’s a “cool old guy” version of Eris (though Eris is way cuter).

  • July 14, 2017 at 2:51 pmbassgs435

    This io based on an LN, not a manga. Hell, the LNs are being translated officialy to english. Following the translator (for news and updates related to another work he was translating at the time) is how I came to know this series

    • July 14, 2017 at 3:50 pmAex

      There is a manga, though, and it just got a translator so I’m very happy!

      • July 14, 2017 at 4:01 pmbassgs435

        The anime adapts the LNs, not the manga. So there being a manga is irrelevant. The source is the light novels

      • July 14, 2017 at 5:01 pmLyfe

        It actually started life as an extremely popular web novel series, similar to Re:Zero. The show was probably made to sell the Light novels though, similar again to Re:Zero.

  • July 14, 2017 at 3:22 pmPancakes

    This show makes for a great drinking game: every time you see a screen transition you have a shot. Note to self though, don’t actually play this game, I did and wound up smashed at 2 in the afternoon.

  • July 14, 2017 at 5:13 pmzztop

    Smartphone’s themes and plot structure is archetypal of isekai webnovels (written by most novice writers) you find on Shousetsuka ni Narou, which are (usually) updated on a near-weekly basis. These are the kinds of stories Konosuba was making fun of.

    Note most of these stories are amateur-written labours of love allowing the reader (and writer) to self-insert themselves into a fantastic world as leisurely escapism.

    Smartphone started as a webnovel too, and is the 83rd most read title on Shousetsuka.

  • July 14, 2017 at 5:49 pmzztop

    Plotwise, the 1st 3-4 volumes are lighthearted SOL fantasy. (MC and friends go around solving various problems at a relaxed pacing.) The official translator hears the anime will only cover that much.

    After that, the plot genre-shifts into more action/scifi territory with darker tones.This is where the overarching story kicks in.

    • July 14, 2017 at 7:31 pmJeffers

      How dark bro? Dark as ReZero or not that much?

      • July 14, 2017 at 7:44 pmAex

        Nothing like that. Just goes from typical adventuring and being ridiculous to a real threat and wars and such. No crazy-murder maids or traumatized heroes here.

      • July 14, 2017 at 8:45 pmmaou

        dark? really? as far as i read it’s like a walk in the park..rather the villains that gets bullied.

      • July 15, 2017 at 7:19 amJeffers

        wew… thanks for that clear up pal. ever since REZERO, whenever i hear “dark” in an anime plot, i am kinda expecting immediately that it will go REZERO “dark” levels. anyway now that i thought of it, i realized that the MC is a fcking jesus, so anything that is dark would be just an easy trip for him.

  • July 14, 2017 at 7:30 pmJeffers

    Basically, this is how konosuba will look like if Kazuma accepted Aqua`s offer of overpowered items to bring to another world, plus stat and ability boost. Definitely interesting and to think this is made by a small studio on a small budget, Im in…

    • July 14, 2017 at 8:39 pmkiryuu

      I actually find it appealing because of that. Watched Konosuba even though it was on the edge of my tolerance since I don’t find the stupid/slapstick stuff too amusing.

      Actually looking forward to seeing how this one goes.

  • July 14, 2017 at 10:15 pmGinobi47

    As a reader of the Light Novel, I give this warning to all people who has any intention to watch this:

    THIS IS A WISH FULFILLMENT ANIME!

    Do not expect comedy that will kill you from laughing like Konosuba.
    Do not expect an engaging plot like Moshuko Tensei
    Do not expect fast pace action like pretty much any decent action anime.
    Do expect a quick moving plot with not a lot of substance (that’s how it is in the LN)
    Do expect overpowered jesus-kun protagonist that has no spine and no personality.
    Do expect Jesus-kun to steamroll over any opposition.
    Do expect a harem (coz WHY THE F*CK NOT!)
    Do expect the haremites falling for Jesus-Kun and break neck speed.

    Now, despite all the negatives, this show is more of a popcorn anime. It will keep you mildly entertained as you wait for the anime that you really want to watch.

    Just go into this show with the mindset of reading those Chinesse Wuxia Novels (keep your expectations at the lowest possible level and dont nitpick on the massive asspulls) and you’ll find a half decent show in this one.

  • July 14, 2017 at 10:29 pmIncognito

    http://randomc.net/image/Isekai%20wa%20Smartphone%20to%20Tomo%20ni./Isekai%20wa%20Smartphone%20to%20Tomo%20ni.%20-%20OP%20-%20Large%2006.jpg
    Was Touya originally attired in black in the light novel illustrations? (Before being changed in the anime so he won’t be confused with a certain “not-so-edgy” Black Swordsman.)

    http://randomc.net/image/Isekai%20wa%20Smartphone%20to%20Tomo%20ni./Isekai%20wa%20Smartphone%20to%20Tomo%20ni.%20-%2001%20-%20Large%2025.jpg
    Ah, polar opposite twin sisters… (CLANNAD‘s Kyou and Ryou Fujibayashi, as well as Lucky Star‘s Kagami and Tsukasa Hiiragi immediately come to mind.) Glad to see Elze and Linze continuing the tradition.

    • July 15, 2017 at 11:18 amTrippwire

      That same thought crossed my mind. “These girls are just a knock off of the Clannad twins.”

      Tropes. Tropes everywhere.

  • July 14, 2017 at 11:46 pmqwert

    For a series where the entire premise supposedly revolves around this kids phone he doesn’t exactly seem to do much with it that seems very… important.

    He checked a map, kept up on a band he liked, and looked up a recipe. True… those are things you do with a smartphone… but come on, fantasy world.

    Does the thing actually end up being important or something or is it a gag? I was expecting God to give the phone powers or something instead of just maxing out the kids stats so he’s a super genius of magic and combat who also happens to have this phone he checks now and then for normal phone stuff.

    • July 15, 2017 at 11:12 ambrajt

      If it was a super magical item, it wouldn’t be a smartphone anymore.

      • July 15, 2017 at 12:54 pmqwert

        Sure it could still be a smartphone and be magic at the same time. The damn thing already gets charged by magic and has a direct line to god.

        Having a cell phone with an app for casting magic would be infinitely more enjoyable than just making the kid a magic prodigy that can instantly learn and cast every spell. Hell it would even open up plot and character developments when the phone gets lost or stolen or has to be charged and suddenly the wish fulfillment wonder kid is back to just being some kid.

  • July 15, 2017 at 12:12 amNishizawa Mihashi

    Oh man… Not this level of quality again. I don’t know about guys but in a way it’s kinda uplifting, seeing that I personally could make a better story featuring a smartphone in quasi-medieval fantasy world with magic. Either way, I hope people are satisfied enough with it

  • July 15, 2017 at 3:06 pmdaikama

    I read/watch some fantasy-harem series (isekai or not, I do think this falls under the broader heading) – including some with hax/op and/or “Gary/Mary Stu” types (two different things IMO). Like any genre, some stories (and adaptations) work out better than others. Point is that it’s not so much the template with this, but rather the general story-telling including an amazing combination of potential hax/op & Gary Stu ML plus unreal levels of plot convenience and a protagonist who has so very little agency. He’s a leaf in the wind (or stick floating on a river if you prefer) carried by the story.

    Because of that last part, I can’t even say that “everything is on demand” here. ML picks his smartphone before he even knows or thinks to ask the kind of world he’s being “reincarnated” into! Yeah, we know it’s Fantasy RPG world, but he doesn’t. Compare to a straight up comedy like KonoSuba where Kazuma puts a lot of thought into his one item (before he ends up getting pulled into Aqua’s pace). What if the ML here was being sent to sci-fi world (e.g. Star Trek/Star Wars). That smartphone is only good for a drink coaster or maybe sold as an utterly obsolete antique. I’ll give a point about considering battery life, but that’s the only thing he considers. Then the convenience train starts to roll.

    Super helpful god (“SHG”) is just that. Not just magic, but to no one’s surprise all types at hax levels. OK, fine, but then SHG throws in super-human/mutant physical abilities and some degree of instant martial arts training as well… all without the ML asking for any of it. When the ML realizes he has no Fantasy RPG world money, like literally 2 seconds later, rich clothes merchant just happens by and MUST have ML’s clothes for a large sum of money! How convenient. Hell, this way ML doesn’t even need to walk to the city. It… just… never… ends. By the end of the episode, it would not have surprised me if upon taking the horned wolf quest, said horned wolves just trotted their merry way to the front of the guild hall and killed themselves to save the ML a modicum of effort.

    I haven’t even gotten to the smartphone yet. Direct line to SHG? With all of the above, why is that even necessary? Maps and magic GPS (again without the ML thinking about such things)? Sure, here you go kid. Freaking RL internet connection as well (and again not considered by the ML)? Of course! All part of the SHG VIP package. Where’s the invincible force-field phone app? Might as well as this point. It seems like the only thing his smartphone can’t do in Fantasy RPG world compared to RL is can’t call his family (I suppose no texting either?). *sigh* Plot convenience is nothing new with stories, but this IMO takes things to an entirely different level so far.

    To be fair, it is only Ep. 01. Definitely a lot can change and time for possible improvements. From comments above, it seems there’s a significant shift in tone in the LN, though perhaps not enough time to be covered by the anime. Also, if the anime is working for fans of the series – great. Seriously, nice to have a good adaptation of a story you like (and frustrating when you don’t. Been there done that. :<).

    For me, this is a likely drop. Issues per above and the ML, while a nice guy type (which is fine), does nothing for me. The two introduced haremettes are cute I guess. Better than the ML IMO (as usual in these types of stories). Still, no real affinity for either at this point. As for the smartphone, the fact that it's pretty much same as in RL minus can't call home is more detrimental IMO than beneficial because it just makes things all the easier for the ML on top of everything else the ML has handed to him. Make it totally off line (as one would expect), no magic GPS, no direct line to SHG, and now ML has to think a bit to make it useful.

Leave a Reply to zztop

Please DO NOT ask or give links to raws, subs, or PVs. Instead, please check the Community section on the sidebar for useful links.
Gravatars are supported, so please sign up for a free account if you would like your own globally recognized avatar.

HTML tags are enabled for comments: <a href="" title=""> <b> <blockquote> <em> <i> <s> <spoiler> <strike> <strong>
** Please use <spoiler></spoiler> around any major spoilers. **