Reincarnated as a Sword
by Christopher Farris,
How would you rate episode 7 of
Reincarnated as a Sword ?
Community score: 4.2
After two straight episodes of dungeons and demons, it makes sense that we'd follow Fran and Teacher onto some downtime and self-care. They were already discussing new stat and skill acquisition at the end of the previous episode, and if there's one thing we've learned about Reincarnated as a Sword, it's that it has no problem presenting the paperwork parts of an RPG campaign alongside all the action-packed dice-rolling bits. It's good news that even as it's flitting from one table-setting sketch to the other, Reincarnated as a Sword continues to be completely compelling in its own cute way this week.
It doesn't start all fun and games, of course, picking up from the dramatic appearance of August Allsand, Knights Brigade Lieutenant and just the World's Grossest Dude. Not everyone's attractiveness in this show is based on their inherent goodness—there have been at least a couple squat dwarf-dudes who are cool towards Fran, while that Greater Demon was actually pretty hot. So making Allsand just an utterly repulsive troll of a weirdo with the proportions of Ram-Man from Masters of the Universe works well enough as shorthand to make sure we hate this guy on sight. His mannerisms and attitude dial up the ham factor, even if I do appreciate what a blast his voice actor is clearly having delivering it all.
It's not really setting up a more dense storyline involving Allsand so much as getting someone in front of Fran and Teacher whom they can immediately use their new Skill Taker ability on. That means there isn't a whole lot of turnabout tension to Teacher figuring out how Allsand's "Essence of Falsehood" skill works, just a blunt scan of the (admittedly pretty clever) power's mechanics and a snap decision to yoink it away—along with his Royal Etiquette skill for good measure. How is having proper manners an ability that can be equipped or removed? Don't worry about it; we're just trying to fuel this plot about this guy getting rightly owned by our cat-and-sword duo, and getting to see Fran do a cute little curtsy afterward.
If an isekai series is going to adhere to the bog-standard RPG world-building approach for its setting, I'm not going to begrudge it for taking the "Don't worry about it" tack when it comes to the finer details. You, me, and all the kids playing along at home know how these kinds of things are supposed to work. That leaves more time for the important stuff, like seeing Fran buy a round of drinks for all her guild buddies, or most importantly, finally cooking that curry Teacher promised her.
This episode's focus on food provides an opportunity for a case study on the sort of thing I like to see from Reincarnated as a Sword's presentation. This extended sequence of fantasy meal prep is technically as relevant to the plot as all those scenes of Teacher reading through stat sheets, probably less so. But the production goes all-out on the adorable energy of the exercise. It's a riot of constant ping-ponging cuts, demonstrating Fran and Teacher's working dynamic outside of simple combat. It's like someone took the Beef Stroganoff Song from Symphogear, played it at 2x speed, and made it a key sequence in a sword and sorcery fantasy story. This scene is layered with segments of them completing otherwise more basic fetch quests, and every other step is loaded with some neat new visual flourish or sight gag.
Really, if Reincarnated as a Sword could devote half this energy to its statistical segments, I'd have even more patience for them than I'm affording it already. It all succeeds in showing how Everything's Coming Up Fran following her big clean-up in the dungeon, and setting the stage for Allsand to come back after all by this episode's end. If you thought they were drawing him as a grungy weirdo before, just wait until you see what he looks like after falling off the nobility train. He also makes clear here that he's a racist, just to really hammer home how much we'd like to see him get it. But he's also here to provide Fran with a new, menacing Blue Cat of an opponent to fight for the next episode already, indicating the downtime dalliances of this one weren't going to take up too much space in the show. Plus, we catch a glimpse of some cool whip-wielding lady we'll also presumably be following up with soon?
See, even in a lighter episode like this one, Reincarnated as a Sword shows it can get plenty going on when it wants to!
Reincarnated as a Sword is currently streaming on HIDIVE.
Chris is a freewheeling Fresno-based freelancer with a love for anime and a shelf full of too many Transformers. He can be found spending way too much time on his Twitter, and irregularly updating his blog.
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