This article is on the show In Another World With My Smartphone or Isekai Wa Smartphone To Tomo Ni, which can best be described as Konosuba Lite, Konosuba PG-Edit, Watered Down Konosuba, or as the tittle suggest Like Konosuba, But…Boring. People of course also draw comparisons to this and Overlord and Re-Zero but beyond the fantasy setting with a modern individual, Smartphone just falls short and lacks the “oomph” or “pzazz” that these shows carry. However, if you’ve never seen either of these then these comparisons mean absolutely nothing and I’ll dive into the basic premise of this show.
What we start off with is a generic Japanese kid not wearing a track suit, Touya Mochizuki’s, wearing who died too early and God decided to give him a do-over. Although unlike Aqua this god is neither funny nor outrageously dressed/inclined to dumb gag jokes. He does instead deliver the functionality of Touya’s cell phone that can be powered by magic and operate as it does now in our world, albeit with no ability to directly communicate/interact with people in our world. Plus we are given a minor insight into his “basic” skills being buffed “above average” and the ability to use magic. This premise alone while by no means original anymore is not that bad.
The execution however is funny at times but not that killer instinct of funny and/or drama that Overlord, Re:Zero, or Konosuba deliver. Our main character turns out into being a boring Marty Stu character with little to no plot bearing in the first three episodes. He turns out to be the only person in the world who can use ANY magic, whether this be elemental magic like fire or water, or custom “Null” magic like the ability to heal any wound/disease, travel great distances instantly via teleportation, and even has considerable martial arts skills and physical attribute boosts. Let me give a bit of explanation as to what the concept of a Marty Stu/Mary Sue character is and why it pisses me off so much. While Overlord is designed to be this guy who has overpowered God-Like power, this show is about a generic dude with “above average” skills who has a cell phone. His magic and physical skills outshine the entire premise of the cell phone which he basically only uses as GPS, a camera, and how to cook ice cream. The premise itself gets shelved and during one episode he uses it for a photo and that’s it. When you have someone who is supposed to be “average” or even “above average” and they surpass the power and skill of specialized individuals such as Overlord then while most creators think this makes for good plot development, it in turn makes a less realistic and frankly boring character. Diving into my tangent of 40k, there is a codex writer INFAMOUS for this named Matt Ward who would take the bog-standard el generico marine chapter of the Space Marines and make them better and everyone at everything for no real reason. This leaves the audience with a sour taste in their mouth about what they have in front of them when your characters can not be harmed and simply walk over any issue with their insane OP powers.
That aside the show is just boring on the cast and plot points to be perfectly frank. We have a number of cliched components including but not limited to knock off Rem/Ram who are far inferior to the originals, a samurai girl who talks in old school style Japanese to emphasize she’s a samurai, a spoiled princess who’s not quite that bad but even God is portrayed as a generic old dude. The plot is again a very boring and bland rehashing of a common enough theme now, without even a “go defeat the Daemon King” goal. The art is bland and boring and I’m left disappointing as when you decide to do Magic Circles in this day and age, they damn well better be entertaining and detailed. Musically and sound FX wise, the show falls flat some more (no pun intended, but very appropriate) and I just find myself wondering why I would continue watching. Other things that bothered me was how we had the cast fighting a Dullahan, using steal to grab garments, and finally and most of all this bitch Linze thought to try to use Explosion mage. I ranted and raged about how there is but one explosion mage, SHE IS WHO SHE IS, Crimson Daemon Archwizard Megumin and any and all who say otherwise are Heretics.
The show has its funny moments don’t get me wrong. Tiny things like God being casually on speed dial or how they at least poke fun at the thought of slime attacks are overridden by terrible oversights and events like randomly just bumping into a creepy clothes merchant who offers our lackluster protagonist money and transit to town in exchange for his clothes. Even the things he brings into this world are boring by comparison where the best he can do is introduce the populace to Shogi and Ice Cream. I’ll end my rant here and sadly title this as my garbage of the season that I’m all to glad to drop. Let me know if you agree/disagree/dgaf in a comment and feel free to like and/or share the article if you thought it was worth a damn. Lest your soul be found wanting and attacked by slimes.