Remember DanMachi? That show that everyone loved because of the boob strings? Well its back this time without much Hestia and Bell slotting them out for overpopular kuudere Ais and a new character Lefiya. The story follows the same timeline as the original show just from Ais point of view rather than Bells hence the shows status as a spinoff of the core series. The question that everyone is looking for the answer to: is a lack of Hestia and yuri undertones enough to save such a intellectually bankrupt and boring concept? Well its definitely not but its thankfully somehow more palatable than its parent. For all intents and purposes Lefiya is equally the main character of the series with Ais herself. Most of the plot of the show centers on Lefiyas seemingly sexual interest in Ais and becoming stronger in order to support both her and her familia which take the place of all of the original DanMachis cringeinducing Hestia fanservice moments. This the largest and Id really argue ONLY reason why this spinoff is better than the original as our slottedout cast is simply more compelling. The Loki familia in general is more interesting than Hestias as it actually has members and relationships even if those relationships are incredibly canned and trite. Lefiya despite having the same drive as Bell I love Ais is more interesting simply because of the fact that she doesnt wholly break the rules like he does and is a supportbased class rather than a daggertouting everyman. The actual plot is the same sort of the monsters were smart and had a plan all along bullshit but has more actual information than the original telling of the story so its far more interesting to follow and I could totally see someone who is really bought in to this world really enjoying it. To the rest of us its a pretty stereotypical anime plot. Aesthetically this series is pretty much identical to the original. Good but not great and carried by character design like every other harem fantasy series. We do get some good animation when Ais is fighting but also a lot of straight reused animation from the original when Bells and Ais pointsofview cross. Music is incredibly forgettable to downright bad as is most of the VA. Fans of DanMachi are really only here for one thing though so if you were worried about the girls not looking cute fret not. With that in mind I guess Sword Oratoria fulfills its aesthetic expectations. For the life of me I just cant get why they didnt just move forward with the original story. Its not like Hestia and Bell werent a popular duo because they were despite Hestia being one of the worst harem characters in recent memory. Going back to do a spinoff an entire year after your successful series seems to be either an admission of moneygrabbing requiring minimal actual writing or just a lack of confidence in the actual material that comes later which is also very likely given the objective quality of DanMachi as an IP. Fans of DanMachi are going to have plenty to like here but its really only a minor patch to an otherwise forgettable softisekai crankout. For more from this season and others check out my blog
50 /100
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