So I’m a Spider, So What? (Kumo Desu Ga, Nani Ka?) – Episode 1: Recap and Review

Episode 1 – “Reincarnation, in Another World”

So I’m a Spider, So What? opens at a highschool. As the students prepare for class, a bright light appears from what seems like a meteor. One student awakens as an unnamed (I’ll call her Kumo) white spider speckled with purple spots. Her siblings and mother result to cannibalism. So I’m a Spider, So What? lets the audience know that despite the cartoony animation, the tone is going to be more brutal. Aware of light novels and the isekai genre, she quickly adapts to her new existence. She learns that she has a AI that informs her of the gaming mechanics. She has 100 points to spend of a skill. Kumo buys the Appraisal skill. However, she quickly learns that it was useless, at least for now. They play the whole thing for laughs. So I’m a Spider, So What? is funny.

I think, therefore I am

She eats her dead “brother” proving that despite her memories she’s not completely different from the other spiders. Her stats pop-up, her name is unknown, Skills: Appraisal LV.1, Poison Fangs LV1, Spider Thread LV3, and Night Vision LV9. Her other attributes HP, MP, and SP are all at 26. After eating her brother, she’s full. Suddenly, the computer AI tells her she’s gained the title of “kin eater.” With the new title comes the skills Taboo (level 1) and Heretic Magic (Level 1). She still trying to figure out the world. Is her title bad? How does she even use heretic magic, use an incantation? However, her past life as a gamer seems to give her a leg up. She tries to gain the title of a dancer by dancing, but falls when something gets caught in her web.

Ow . . . Is my body melting?

She returns to find that she caught a blue frog in her web. It attacks her with poison burning her eye. After she flees to avoid more poison attacks, she told that she gained the skill: Acid Resistance (Level 1). She attacks the frog, avoiding its poison spit. However, when she reaches it, the frog spit poison on her back. Her poison resistance increases to level 2. Using her speed, she gets behind the frog, and starts biting it. It a brutal scene. Spider is excited to defeat her first prey and to learn that her fangs are poisonous. Suddenly, we see what appears to be a graduation. Schlain Zagan Analeit, the prince of the country, is in attendance. We’re told that he’s a prodigy, but not of what. On Schlain’s solder is a dragon-like creature called Fei-chan. Standing next to him is Karnatia Seri Anabald, the daughter of the duke and another prodigy.

It’s like getting to relive my youth! I’m excited!

Filimos-san congratulates them for being “accepted.” She’s an elf, and their teacher, but also a student. It took me a second watch to realise that Filimos is probably the students’ teacher that was also reincarnated in a younger body. She introduces them to her other students, Natsume and Hasebe, the crown prince of the Renxandt Empire and a VIP from the Holy Kingdom of Alleius. Natsume asks, “who are they on the inside?” Schlain responds that he’s Shunsuke Yamada, and Karnatia reveals that she’s Kanata Ooshima. Fei-chan begins speaking, revealing that she was Mirei Shinohara in her past life. Most of the class has been reincarnated into the bodies of humans. Those reincarnated as monsters can communicate with humans. Elsewhere, Spider tries eating the frog. Her Acid Resistance rises to level 2. She still can’t enjoy eating as everything tasting bitter. Determined to survive, Spider pushes through.

I loved the first episode of So I’m a Spider, So What?. I’m excited to go on this journey with Kumo. This series isn’t action heavy, but it balances humor with action well. The series subverts the typical “chosen one” narrative by making the principal character a weak spider. I’m curious how much subversion this series does. I usually focused on animation first, but I think that So I’m a Spider, So What? has solid animation but nothing that stands out. It remains to be seen if that changes. I love the mechanics of the series. Everything that Kumo does results in some stat increase. Considering the fact that Kumo was a loner in school, I don’t think she will have a preexistent relationship with any classmate. So I’m a Spider, So What? reminds me of Made in Abyss with an adorable character trapped in a dangerous environment. That’s a good thing.

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