By: Peggy Sue Wood | @pswediting
Reincarnation has been a popular premise in anime and manga (generally fiction as a whole) for some time, allowing characters to come back from death in a new form and allowing them/us to explore a different version of life in another world or the same one from a new perspective. That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime is one such series, and it is one of my favorites with its ridiculous plot progression that jumps from final boss-level worries in one episode to the internal drama of a tight-knit community in the next (not to mention the fantastic cast of characters). Therefore I was ecstatic to learn that the series was getting a movie, Scarlet Bond, and even more delighted to find that there would be an international release.
DUB vs. SUB
The movie was equally as entertaining as the show and manga. I ended up seeing the film twice. Once in Japanese with subtitles and once with English dubbing. There were some minor changes between the two texts, like Towa’s ending speech or how characters responded to some things, but I wouldn’t say that it changed the meaning of the scenes in any significant way. To be honest, I found the dubbed version to be more enjoyable. While I am used to subtitles and have a slight grasp of Japanese, I was able to really take in the art and the action scenes better when I wasn’t trying to switch between reading and watching on the big screen. Moreover, the voice actors for the new characters–specifically, Towa and Hiiro–were phenomenal.
Part of my favorite thing within the That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime anime is the over the top fight scenes and this movie was no different. There was some dramatic ones, there were some flashy ones, and there were ones that just looked epic. I felt like I got to enjoy these more when I was watching the dub version, because I could pay more attention to what was happening on screen. With the subtitled version, I was definitely reading a lot and there times when the subtitles disappeared too quickly for me to finish the sentence or second line of text. While I wasn’t sure I was missing too much because the context was pretty straightforward, it certainly made me feel a little frustrated.
[Spoilers] Should I see it if I haven’t watched the show?
No. I would not recommend seeing this movie if you haven’t seen the show. Firstly, the movie opens in the midst of troubles with the Demon Lord Clayman (the Orc Lord arc), and there are a lot of things that tie in with events from Season 1 and Season 2 of the anime. I could maybe see missing Season 2 and still understanding the set up for the movie, but you’d need the context of Season 1 to fill-in some of the larger blanks since there aren’t really character introductions. I think a lot of anime movies which continue a series tend to give brief characters introductions, and this one sort of does but it’s not so much that I think you could miss Season 1 and still get the gist of the dynamic (at least, that’s my opinion). Note: The movie picks up directly after Season 2, so there is not a big time gap between the events seen in the film and the show.
I loved the movie. I loved the new characters–particularly Hiiro. I loved the animations. I thought that the opening action scene was epic and emotionally impactful. I felt invested in the progression of events and loved seeing the characters work out what was happening.
I thought it was excellent and would rate it a 9/10. I give it a 9/10 only because I saw it in theaters but this would have received a 10/10 had I watched from home. It was worth the ticket prices to me, because I wanted to see it in theaters but this was probably one I could have enjoyed from home in a pay-to-watch sort of situation on Amazon Prime, YouTube, or–if they had the option–Crunchyroll/Funimation.
If you are a fan of the series, definitely add this to your watchlist!