Isekai is an anime genre where a normal citizen of Earth is injected into an alternate fictional world. In common storylines, the protagonist dies in their original world to be reincarnated in a new one.
In “So I’m a Spider, So What?,” the reincarnated characters were placed there deliberately by beings known as “administrators.” Additionally, the reincarnations possess much greater natural strength and power than even the best of adventurers. “So I’m a Spider, So What?” differentiates itself in the genre by bringing an entire school class to a new world, a total of two dozen reincarnations.
Schlain Zagan Analeit is one of the reincarnations. He was born as the younger brother to Julius, the Hero who holds the power to defeat the Demon Lord. He is joined initially by fellow reincarnations as current academy students:
– Karnatia Seri Anabald, the daughter of the duke of Analeit who was a boy in her past life
– Filimos Harrifenas, an elf who was their teacher back on Earth
– Feirune, Schlain’s dragon familiar, who was the classroom bully in her previous life
Filimos tried her best to gather her class and guide them in the world with lessons on not abusing the powers they held. However, Hugo Baint Renxandt, another of the reincarnations, thought limiting their power was the weak way out. He did not trust Filimos nor did he want to listen to her. His hotheadedness led him to become a weapon of the Demon Army, obsessively pursuing power. He and his new company went so far as to burn down the Analeit mansion and pin the blame on Schlain. On the run, Schlain and company must build plans to confront and defeat the Demon Army, a quest beginning in Elven territory.
However, none of this matters.
The star of this story is Kumoko, who was reincarnated as a spider after living a shut-in lifestyle. Voiced by the incredible Aoi Yuuki, her lone thoughts at the start are of survival and counteracting the natural weaknesses of a spider by using her retained cleverness. Kumoko builds her power slowly, eventually reaching levels that cause people to view her as a beast of legend. Myths spread around the world, even going so far as to reach and distract Schlain and his team.
That’s the charm in “So I’m a Spider, So What?” The overarching story of a large-scale conflict across the world pales in comparison to watching Kumoko carve out a legacy in her world. All of the reincarnations are born at the same time, meaning Kumoko reached biological maturity long before her human counterparts did. That time allowed her to grow tremendously strong, becoming feared and revered everywhere. Meanwhile, from her perspective, she’s lounging around wherever she pleases in an attempt to relax. However, she gets forced into the main plot, encountering the Demon Lord and multiple of the reincarnations by accident, without knowledge that all of her classmates also exist in the world.
The isekai genre has been saturated in recent years with the same repetitive stories, but “So I’m a Spider, So What?” stands out as truly unique. It’s admittedly slow to get into, but Aoi Yuuki is the best voice actor in the business and does a fantastic job of giving people a reason to watch her character when the story has yet to begin. Watching her impact the world and uncover the truth behind reincarnation makes for an exhilarating story that can only be found on Crunchyroll.