Review of KonoSuba (Season One)

konosubaseason1

Hurrah! I am now a Crunchyroll subscriber. Many moons ago I visited the site and was told that the service was unavailable in my country. That restriction appears to have been lifted now, allowing me to take advantage of a their fourteen day trial. Just as well because watching stuff over there for free is nigh on impossible, unless you have the patience of a saint, due to the constant barrage of adverts. The anime that took my Crunchyroll virginity is KonoSuba – a funny fantasy show about a Japanese shut-in, who is resurrected in a mystical land, after perishing in rather embarrassing circumstances.

OVERVIEW

In the first episode, of this light novel adaptation, teenager Kazuma Sato is given a second lease on life and transported to a magical kingdom. He hopes that his knowledge of MMORPGs will serve him well in this new land, but due to his puny stats he is only able to make a minimum wage via construction jobs. Although a career in adventuring is more lucrative, Kazuma is unable to complete any of the quests posted at the local guild. The one time he attempted to vanquish five giant toads it didn’t go well and culminated in his travelling companion Aqua getting slimed worse than Peter Venkman of Ghostbusters fame.

Aqua, by the way, is the rude goddess who gave the departed Kazuma the option of ascending into heaven or reviving in a world that is presently being hounded by the nefarious Devil King. Due to an afterlife legal loophole, Kazuma was able to drag Aqua with him into a nation where sorcery and medieval weapons are the norm. If Aqua ever hopes to return home she’ll have to aid Kazuma in accomplishing his ultimate goal of defeating the aforementioned demon monarch. Despite being blessed with divine healing magic, Aqua isn’t much help. She is cowardly, useless in a fight and extremely selfish.

CHARACTERS

Thankfully for Kazuma’s sake he is able to band together with more friendly, albeit unusual, allies as the series progresses. Megumin is the first person to answer Kazuma’s call for party members. She is a young caster who commands destructive Explosion magic. The ability to fire off a nuclear blast may sound handy, but the problem is that Explosion is the only spell Megumin knows. Even worse, whenever Megumin activates her signature move she collapses in an exhausted stupor and is unable to do anything else for the rest of the day. What a useless witch. Getting tired after one explosion is “bang” out of order.

Darkness is the next and final person to join Kazuma’s four-man group. Clad in armour, she is a blonde crusader – although the sword she wields is just for show. Due to terrible accuracy, which rivals the aim of a Rambo baddie, Darkness is incapable of striking any assailant… or even stationary targets for that matter. On the plus side Darkness is a courageous protector who willingly soaks up all damage directed at her teammates. The role of tank suits Darkness to a T, as she is a masochist who loves nothing more than being on the receiving end of physical pain and verbal abuse.

VERDICT

My rating for KonoSuba is four stars. As someone who enjoyed Slayers, I really dug the show’s mix of comedy and fantasy. It was fun to see whom Kazuma would face next, in his adventures, as the villains come in all shapes and sizes. The lineup of antagonists includes a slighted Dullahan, a runaway arachnid fortress and even flying cabbages. Natsume Akatsuki, who penned the source material, has created an interesting universe that borrows ideas from MMOs. Just like in a video game, KonoSuba’s characters acquire skills by levelling up. The first talent that Kazuma learns is the steal ability, which he promptly uses to pilfer panties. I’ll have to try that next time I roll a rogue in DnD.

KonoSuba isn’t perfect though. The early episodes could be better and the series doesn’t really click until Kazuma’s team has been fully assembled. I also thought that the artwork was inconsistent. At times the visuals are okay and on other occasions they look rough. Studio Deen continue to live up to their reputation of delivering erratic illustrations. I’ll forgive the scenes where characters go off model though, as no one expects masterpiece drawings from a comedy. Overall I had a grand time with KonoSuba. The first season only spans for ten episodes, but thankfully a new series is already out and available to watch on Crunchyroll (the website… as far as I know bread does not stream cartoons.)

24 thoughts on “Review of KonoSuba (Season One)

  1. Cool that you can finally watch on Crunchyroll. The amount of anime on offer is absolutely staggering (and quite frankly more than a little daunting at times). Still, there is enough to see on it to last more than a lifetime I guess 😀 I had not yet heard of this series (or I might have scrolled past it I guess). It does sound like a pretty fun watch. I haven’t watched many fantasy anime shows, so maybe I will check this one out at some point. Well, hope you won’t have too many sleepless nights now because of your subscription lol 😂

    • Yes, it’s nice to have access to the service. Before I had to watch anime online via “other means” because legal providers didn’t want to take my money! Sleepless nights may happen, as I expect to watch more stuff now. When one subscribes to something it’s human nature to make sure you get your money’s worth.

  2. As Crunchyroll faces more competition in the U.S., I’m glad they’re reaching out overseas.

    KonoSuba does seem to be a well-liked isekai series. There are so many that it’s hard to keep up, but this may be one I should check out.

    • Maybe isekai is on the rise because people are fed up with how things are going in our world. KonoSuba was fun because it doesn’t treat itself seriously. I usually like it when a comedy show takes place in a fantasy setting and this anime was no exception.

  3. Not heard of this one but the trapped in an MMO theme is becoming a tired and lazy one and as a non-game player I have little interest in them. :/

    • Technically the anime is set in an actual fantasy world, but there are some MMO mechanics in play (akin to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon.)

      Anime may be getting over saturated with MMOs, but it’s not all bad. You for example enjoy MMO Junkie on Saturdays.

  4. Crunchyroll alway makes me hungry for soup and a baguettes hehe 🙂
    This anime sounds so much fun 🙂 But, unfortunately Crunchyroll doesn’t work too well here, because internet speeds are glob awful. 😦

    • Hehe. All of a sudden I am hungry for some French onion soup. Sorry to hear about your connection speed woes. My internet isn’t the fastest either, but with a bit of patience I am able to get by when it comes to streaming or downloading the occasional game.

  5. Good to see you on Crunchyroll! It definitely does make you wonder why it took them so long to get out there. Like you said, if the legit companies won’t take your money, then naturally alternatives must be picked. I’ve never seen this show but the color scheme and background always made it look like SAO to me. I could see myself watching this one at some point although probably not too soon. It’ll be cool to see how many shows you check out now that you’re on Crunchy!

    • With the Crunchyroll account you can expect me to watch more anime, which will mean more reviews. It will also help me to cover more stuff that hasn’t gotten a physical release in the UK. Even if you aren’t a Sword Art fan I would still recommend KonoSuba. Despite the fantasy setting they are very different shows. KonoSuba is pure comedy.

  6. Yeah, KonoSuba’s visuals are pretty inconsistent, sometimes even bad. But it’s one of those rare shows where it’s able to get away with it thanks to it’s trashy nature. The show definitely has some problems here and there but I enjoyed it a lot, one of the most pure fun I have had with a series for awhile.

    • Comedies can get away with sub par visuals because in a way they add to the experience. Even the ones with good production values will go off model because exaggerated expressions can be funny. Right now I am watching season two and I am enjoying it even more than the first series of KonoSuba.

  7. Crunchyroll’s worked well for me, although I am cheap, and yeah, those ads do get to be a bit much.

    This does sound like a pretty fun show! It’s a good setup, a team of adventurers who are all bad at their jobs, and I could see some good things coming out of it.

    • I wouldn’t mind the occasional advert, but they hit you with multiple commercials every ten minutes or so. Can’t imagine using the site without an account.

      This series is funny thanks to the party’s banter and how they go about trying to overcome their weaknesses. I wouldn’t describe them as bad at their jobs, just too specialized in one role. The tank can only soak up damage, the DPS can destroy anything but at the price of one spell a day etc.

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