「暗殺教師の矜持」 (Ansatsu no Kyoushi Kyouji)
“Pride of an Assassin-Instructor”
padoru Christmas shenanigans (and the alcohol, oh god the alcohol) now done and dusted for another year, it’s time for one last fall hurrah courtesy of Assassins Pride, and it certainly didn’t disappoint. As expected Melida beat her way through the latest attempt at besting her, Mule indeed proved more than face value indicated, and Kufa did the usual—albeit with some surprise assistance from our supposed damsel in distress. I admit I wasn’t expecting much from Assassins Pride’s finale, but it’s still nice knowing the show isn’t leaving any irking cliffhangers or meddlesome teases only answerable in the source material.
It may not have been the best it could’ve been, but sometimes cute and happy is all you need to wrap things up.
In hindsight Assassins Pride was likely a show which did not need coverage. It was superficial at best, treated its source material as speed bumps to be quickly worked over, and was hard pressed to show the depth and imagination which made its fans so interested in the first place. Yet for the all the noticeable issues I don’t consider my time that badly spent in the end. It may have been problematic—but it was also fun, and sometimes that’s all which matters.
Arguably Assassins Pride’s largest positive is limited to anime only viewers. While pacing problems were readily apparent from the start, these faults are mitigated (somewhat) by coming into this series blind. The main characters were showcased, the central premise quickly identified, and little time was wasted on fleshing out the central details. There may have been difficulties in elucidating the role or purpose of minor characters (particularly the various antagonists up to and including the lancanthrope monsters), but Assassins Pride was skillful enough (at least for me) to suggest the full history of those characters would be revealed later so to encourage further viewing. May not have worked very well, but at least some thought went into the manner of source material butchery.
Not everything was golden about Assassin Pride’s choices however; a good deal of useful information was also left at the wayside. Although we received relatively coherent arcs with sensible progression, a lot of the meat on tap was infodump-esque: random titles and names with no apparent grounding; unclear magic systems; wholly unknown backgrounds never once discussed (e.g. the world of lancanthropes outside the light). This is a structural problem which plagues almost every light novel adaptation of late, and while somewhat unfair to demand every little detail from Assassins Pride, it still would’ve been nice to receive some explanation for certain things, particularly the various tests and duels Melida found herself involved in. As any light novel series fan can say this isn’t enough to immediately ruin an adaptation, but it definitely helps differentiate the good ones from their lesser brethren.
In the end I don’t imagine Assassins Pride will be uniquely standing out from the adaptation crowd in the years to come, but it’s certainly not one of the worst we’ve seen to date. It did everything it had to, it promoted its source material, offered (if only partially) a good idea of what to expect from its story, and provided a sufficiently enjoyable ride through the fall season. I may have been expecting more when I committed to covering it, but Assassins Pride shows there’s still fun to be had in the even the most conventional of adaptations.